Saturday, January 30, 2010

In Kabul - First Day, Part 3.

When I think about the shopping day, I am confronted again by my first struggle with poverty. As soon as I exited the blue van (I was out first), a burka clad woman asked me for money. I said, 'ney', no. She then touched my arm, pleading with me. I said, ney, ney and walked into the store where I proceeded to spend $27 USD.

How will I deal with this? My only consolation is that her grip on my arm was strong and she moved fast and no one hurt her in that moment. I am rich. I need wisdom in this area. I will be working with the rich of Afghanistan, not the poor. I do not understand what, "the poor, you will always have with you" means.

When we got back to the guest house, I started in on my room. My bags had basically remained zipped up. After a little bit of work, I knew that I needed a short nap. I lay myself down on my newly made up bed, enjoying the comforts of flannel sheets, a wool blanket and two afghan covers (so heavy you can NOT lift them in the air and toss them to make the bed; you rather roll them over the bed until they lay where you need them to be).

I was immediately called for by my neighbor Bruce who wanted to order a pizza and then by Mike on the phone who was checking in on me. I agreed to the pizza order and told Mike I was a-ok. The pizza arrived at 6:30, but I was too tired by then to enjoy it, so off to the freezer it went. [I finally got to it on Saturday, several days later.]

I slept then until about midnight and then checked online. They had finally fixed that for me in the afternoon, assigning my netbook's MAC address to the network. I tried to call my sister on Skype. She could hear me, but I could not hear her. I further tested the network and concluded that my internet access here is poor. I am way too far away from the wireless router.

I emailed my sister and told her I tried, but worried that she would think something was wrong. She could hear me, though, so knew that I just could not hear her.

Then I Live Messenger'd the family house and reached both mom and dad. We chatted a while successfully and included a video chat. Again, I could not hear them, but they could hear me just fine.

I went back to sleep about 2 a.m. Sometime during then and 7 a.m., the electricity to my room and bathroom went out. I now had no lights or power for my computer, etc. I still had hot water and power for my heat source. I just took a shower in the mostly dark bathroom. I was glad that I had already set it up and knew how everything worked.

That was my first day/night in Kabul.

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