Thursday, August 09, 2007

I Went To Najaf

Yesterday I was planning to go back to Baghdad because I had run out of food. But the government pulled off a last minute traffic ban meaning I'm stuck in the farm till Saturday or Sunday I think. So instead of going to Baghdad yesterday Nahida, Fozzy and I went to check out Najaf which isn't very far at all. The last time I went there must've been over ten years ago and visiting my grandfather's crypt in the basement of a house too creeped out to take a good look. Someday I'm expected to be burried there too. I really ought to check it out again sometime before I'm dead. Was hoping to find some food in Najaf and we wound up heading to one of the poshest neighbourhoods to find a grocery shop but they didn't have much of anything good either aside from some beans in a tin and Nescafe gold blend.

We also went to the big market they've got over there. On the way there we passed by a fire station wondering whether they should move out because there was lots of smoke rising from behind a wall across the street. The market was very lively. The whole city appeared a significant degree cleaner than Baghdad. The number of shops in the market was incredible considering they're all selling pretty much the same stuff mostly textiles, basic foods and speciality sweets, and gold jewelery. There was one little shop with a guy making 'head turds'. It looked like a lot of work went into one of those, but I imagine most of them are machine made now. It wasn't difficult to spot Iranian tourists either even though they appeared to make an effort to blend in. Some of the shop keepers were even speaking Farsi. There were private security soldiers there too, they were the only ones that appeared to be taking maintaining security seriously. They'd stand firmly in one place whilst Iraqi security forces would mop around, play around with their mobile phones or congregate over some tea.

I really want to get back to Baghdad. I think there might be some hypocrisy when the government imposes a traffic ban so that people can do their "walk" to Kadhimiya. The government is very big on the idea of the majority yet I don't think the majority of people are going on this walk in the first place.

1 comment:

Don Cox said...

"I really ought to check it out again sometime before I'm dead."___Why bother? You'll have plenty of time to check it out after you're dead.____What on Earth is a "head turd"?____Thanks for doing this blog, it is funny and interesting.