Telephone calls while in Kabul?
You may need to ask an Afghan for a favour to secure a SIM card for you. They do not cost much. There are 3 famous telephone companies at the moment: AWCC, Areeba and Roshan. Believe me, you will not hear the same answer when you ask people which one is the best (cost, connection/reception). You won't have any problem in topping up your credit. Phone cards are sold almost in every corner at AFA 250, AFA 500, etc.
The changing face of kabul
Among the most noticable changes in Kabul- visually at least- is the new buildings and construction projects mushrooming around the city. Some rather swanky buildings, including the Kabul Serena, the fancy 5 star hotel. That apart, i was at a shopping mall, that had just gotten ready, complete with escalators and elevators, and also modern looking phone booths, installed across the city.
This was something new and quite a contrast to either of my earlier trips.
That being said, its something that dosent represent the large chunk of its poorer majority, and there are real problems and issues- like power supply. Kabul and the rest of the country, face severe power shortages and diesel gensets are a way of life...
The Government does plan to buy power from the neighbouring countries soon and eventually generate power on its own.
Work in Afghanistan
Any tradesmen looking for work in Afghanistan contact me. We are looking for experienced Electricians, Carpenters, Plumbers and anyone in construction who can use their skills and supervise the afghan workers. You get a good salary and get sent around the country. The security at the moment is good so there are no worries about safety and if there’s the slightest doubt you get guards. I came in overland from Pakistan by myself and lapped the whole country 3 months ago then got a job and now intend to stay for at least a year. If you want to carry plasterboard in London or pick fruit in Australia then go for it, but if you want to use your trade and travel a bit more adventurously then send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Afghanistan is crying out for Westerners with experience who can show them how its done properly and know that unreliable electricity, mountain passes at 3000m, ridiculously long friendly Afghan greetings, mad traffic and French ISAF soldiers pushing shopping trolleys with there rifles poking out of the basket through the local supermarket picking up their imported wine is all a part of the experience.
[no, this isn't my favorite thing about Tajikistan]
I got a 7 day transit visa (inside a 9 day window) at the Tajik embassy in Kabul.
It is located at:
Wazir Akbar Khan
(right across the street from Lili's Chinese restaurant -- tell the taxi driver this and they should know it).
Look for the guards about 50 meters in from the main road.
The visa cost $60.
Ahmed Shah Massoud,the famous Guerilla leader of the Mujahadeen.An educated man,he took up arms to fight the Soviets,Warlords,and Taliban for control of Afghanistan. Although Kabul was re-taken and lost several times by Massoud,his ability as a local politician less than equalled his abilities as a Guerilla leader. Massoud was assasinated in 2001 (2 months before 9/11) by assasins posing as a camera crew. It is claimed the assasins were from Al Qaeda,although many find the event suspicious considering that Massoud had become more anti-american in his stance. Some may of feared he'd be the new ruler if Afghanistan was liberated from the Taliban,on the possibility of any invasion. Massoud met his end when the device inside the camera detonated,killing the assasins and Massoud. In Kabul, a cult of "Massoud" has been born,and he has been elevated to deity like status amongst many Afghans as the leader of Afghanistan "who never was".