Stories about PIA

Surviving flight 304 with cake-boy

Karachi-wallay like to stereotype. We spin whole life stories around accessories and behaviour. Pants above ankle length? Member of an Islamist party. Pink iPhone case with matching nails? Definitely out of town, maybe a Lahori. So it was only fitting that when I boarded the PK304 to Lahore I was assigned the seat right out of a bad airplane movie: the one directly behind the bathroom, next to the mother with the howling baby. By that I don’t mean I’m going to start bashing PIA. Personally I like PIA, I like the spicy food and I think the schedule runs ...

Read Full Post

Reminiscing about Faiz

I had left for Karachi eager to watch the literary festival sponsored by the British Council and the Oxford University Press. But when I wished to return there was just no way to do that. PIA’s flights were suspended. I thought of leaving the city on board the old whistle-blowing train. But the trains today are worse than a bullock cart. The latter is slow but reliable the former is not to be trusted at all. There is no telling where and when it may be stopped and for how long. Several trains have been abolished. The remaining may be ...

Read Full Post

Say no to change!

A common question heard across Pakistan is why are we still in the same place economically as we were 20 years ago? Well, it’s a very valid question that not only raises a great point but also shows the overall frustration people feel about the state of our economy, where everything somehow takes a full turn and ends up being worse than before. A simple example of this would be the interest rates. Back in 1994, interest was hovering close to 18 percent. Now, 16 years later, it is close to the same level. This is not because Pakistan is stuck ...

Read Full Post

Adventures in Oslo: Part 1

I’m in the land of the midnight sun – Oslo. I’m here for 6 days to attend the ‘Pakistani Mela Music Festival’ and explore the depths of Norwegian-Pakistani relations. With me on this reise (Norwegian for journey) is Mudassir, the talented  producer of Epress 24/7 programme’s The Other Line and Platform. The journey to the sun We left Islamabad amidst great excitement. We were to arrive in Oslo at 9pm via Istanbul and Stockholm. The PIA flight was thrilling. The pilot and crew discussed everything from the floods, the ED 202 plane crash (quite unnerving), President Zardari’s visit to the UK to the futility of the war in Afghanistan. For further insight, ...

Read Full Post