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No Really, is Small Family May 1, 2006

Posted by KG in Pakistan.

For every one transformative or at least powerful experience here, there's ten mundane.  The only difference being that there's a category shift in what is mundane and what is not.  As an example, yesterday.

Afghan applicants are par for the course here, as I've previously mentioned.  They are no more difficult or easy than Pakistani applicants, except that they can be trying on our resources as only three of our staff speak Persian/Farsi/Dari (and only one in my specific section).  That and the fact that Afghan naming traditions are even more fluid and confusing than traditional Pakistani and thus completely and utterly baffling.  But these are things you get used to after three or four times through the old Afghan ringer. 

Yesterday, on the later interview shift, three Afghan applicants walked in, older women dressed extremely well.  They didn't move like other Afghan women I'd seen (usually, three steps behind their husbands) — they had an "oomph" in their step I can't really describe, though on interviewing them I realized what it was.  They were three members of the Afghan Parliament.  Which was met by a basic mental shrug and the thought "oh, that makes sense then."

One sticks out in my mind, because she was four years older than I am and was already at a pretty high level in her society (it's important to note that I've met 50 year old Afghans that look about 100, so the closeness in age isn't that startling, considering…).  In going through the routine issuance process, I asked her how many children she had.  She replied: "12."

To review: not much older than me married, 12 kids,  and a member of the Afghan Parliament.  A clear example, friends, of just how behind I am.   



1. Bob - May 2, 2006

Ah, but “behind” is so culturally relative. Can you imagine what you’d be doing if you had 12 kids? That said, the FS is definitely the place to have 12 kids…

Just be glad she wasn’t an AmCit and bringing in all 12 of those kids at the same time to get CRBAs. 10 minutes before the section closes.

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