Yes dear readers, I am finally here. After weeks of preparation, stress, planning and a long flight, the family and I have finally begun our month long vacation in the colorful and unpredictable country that is Pakistan.
So while I attempt to regain my bearings (and maybe sleep off this awful jet lag), here’s a little something to give you an idea of what life is like in the country of my birth.
You know you’re in Pakistan when:
1) You visit someone’s house and are not allowed to leave till you’ve consumed at least 2 platefuls of sumptuous food and a cup of pipping hot tea.
2) You pick up the hair dryer only to realize there is no electricity because it’s 8:01am and scheduled power outages are nothing if not prompt on when the power goes out (but not so prompt on when it comes back on).
3) You fall back into old routines of filling a bucket of water before taking a bath just in case the water runs out while you’re standing there with soap in your eye.
4) Getting warning texts from family and friends to avoid a certain area of the city because there has been a blast (or the threat of a blast) becomes ‘normal’ again.
5) You get looked at funny when you insist your toddler sit in a car seat instead of your lap when in the car (yes, car seat, even for newborns, are not a thing in Pakistan).
(Image courtesy of Huffington Post)
6) You get used to the concept of a small army of domestic help in and around your house at all times, including (but not limited to) a cook, a driver, a cleaning lady, a maid-of-all-works, a security guard and a gardener. (No I’m not super rich, having domestic help is the norm in Pakistan)
7) There is dust everywhere, all the time.
8) Seeing a horse drawn cart pull up next to you at a red light in the poshest area of town is nothing out of the ordinary.
9) You have to get reacquainted with the idea that getting new clothes isn’t as simple as going out and buying some, no sir. You have to go out and buy fabric, maybe get some fancy buttons or ribbons or get another piece of cloth dyed for the matching pants, than go to your tailor and get clothes stitched (although ‘ready-to-wear’ stuff has become more common now than before). I hear my old tailor is still in business. I wonder if he’s still as good at pants as he used to be…