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Our Man in Pakistan: The Trip Home


by Stephen Becker 23 Jul 2009

Guest blogger Bart Weiss is director of the Video Association of Dallas. This is his last post from Pakistan, where he participated in the American Documentary Showcase. The flight from Lahore to Dubai was pretty much uneventful. Either that or I was too tired to remember. When traveling with the State Department, you have people […]

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A women in a full burka at McDonalds at the Dubai Airport. Here, they are not hamburgers, they are beefburgers. Also, in Lahore, McDonalds delivers!

A women in a full burka at McDonalds at the Dubai Airport. Here, they are not hamburgers, they are beefburgers. Also, in Lahore, McDonalds delivers!

Guest blogger Bart Weiss is director of the Video Association of Dallas. This is his last post from Pakistan, where he participated in the American Documentary Showcase.

The flight from Lahore to Dubai was pretty much uneventful. Either that or I was too tired to remember. When traveling with the State Department, you have people taking you through the airport. Nice.

The Dubai airport is kind of a halfway home spot, clearly a Muslim city but very modern and very full of money and commerce. It’s kind of a Vegas/Disneyland. The big thing in the airport is the duty free shops. I think we were the only people who did not buy something there. What I heard was that they have a bigger selection of goods than many people have in the countries they are coming from or going to.

Then, it was on to London, where I had to stay over. To get to the hotel, I had a driver who was Pakistani. We of course talked the whole way. He told me he went to the university where we had been. He said while there groups would pressure students to go protest the U.S. constantly. He also told me when he was young people came to his school asking for people to go fight in Afghanistan. They paid really good and would give them an AK-47. Lots of people went.

By the time we got to the hotel (that was across the street from Windsor Castle) I was thoroughly exhausted, but we talked for at least 40 minutes. In the car on the way to the airport the next morning, another Pakistani driver told me the driving is so bad in Pakistan that he, a professional driver, will not drive in Lahore.

The flight back to Dallas seemed to last forever, but I am home now.

Soon, some more reflections from the trip.

Bart

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