Sunday, 9 February 2014
The Blue Mosque at Mazar-i-Sharif
It is very pretty and very blue. We traveled to Mazar-i-Sharif to recce the airport for a security contract. The Afghan Ministry of Transport were tendering a security contract for the regional hub airports of Kabul, Kandahar, Herat and Mazar. I joined the trips to Herat and Mazar-i-Sharif simply to see something more of Afghanistan than Kabul and Helmand.
Both were good trips. Mazar was the first (and at the time of writing last) place that I have seen a Leper, sitting outside the mosque in the street, missing fingers, nose, lips. Quite grotesque. Leprosy is alive in the mountains and towns of Northern Afghanistan, a medieval disease in a country that is still medieval in parts.
Afghans come to feed the doves in the grounds of the Blue Mosque. Catching wild birds is something of a national pass time and it is interesting to see how tenderly they treat them.