Mary Smith with another fabulous post about her time working in Afghanistan in 1989… so many things we take for granted and in some cases lack respect for.. such as going to school. And Mary tells her first joke in Dari.. which went down very well…please head over to read in full..
Lal-sar-Jangal November 1989
The headmaster had asked Qurban to bring me to see the village school. Although our organisation did not provide financial support directly to schools, we acted as couriers for donor organisations in Germany, delivering funds and sending back reports and funding requests. In this way we had quite strong links with several schools. The school in Lal had been open for several years and, although it was only for boys plans were in place to open classes for girls the following year, when new school premises had been built.
Ibrahim was to accompany us, for which I was glad. He, more than any of the other staff, had the ability to understand what I was trying to say, even when it was coming out all wrong. When I had difficulties understanding something, it was Ibrahim who could usually find a different way to phrase things until the meaning was clear. When we were ready to leave Qurban said, ‘You go on ahead. I’ll catch you up when I finish some work here.’
I followed Ibrahim out of the compound to where our horses awaited and Rahimy joined us, just before we reached the school, riding up sporting a magnificent turban.
The headmaster, standing at the doorway of the school was clearly upset by Qurban’s non-appearance – having two lowly field assistants as guests, instead of the big “doctor” was an insult. On behalf of Qurban, Rahimy apologised, delivering the message about him having ‘too much work’. Ibrahim spoke to him in a placatory way. Finally, he shrugged and led us into the two-roomed school.
Please head over to read this informative and thought provoking post…