The heat is on

Trip Start Apr 25, 2010
Trip End Nov 10, 2010

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Where I stayed
Silver Sands Hotel

Flag of Pakistan  ,
Monday, May 24, 2010

So far changes in the course of our journey have been gradual, but our short flight from Tehran to Karachi seems to have brought us to another world. Aside from the seering heat, more about which later, there is an extraordinary colour, chaos and buzz about this place, made more potent by the presence of armed men almost everywhere you look. We are expecting police bodyguards for each member of the group. Things don't turn out that way, but on the second day we do get an armed escort, sometimes with sirens, which changes every few miles. At one point we are guarded by elite forces, hard men in "No Fear" T-shirts. Despite the precautions, everyone we meet is unfailingly polite, helpful and considerate, and none more so than our guide, who smooths over every possible problem. In a way I feel like a cheat here - in so many ways we are treated like children, being driven from hotel to hotel and taking snapshots from the bus window. But on balance it's probably for the best - this is a hard country with a lot of problems.

And then there's the heat. By the third day in Pakistan, it was almost too much to walk outside the bus. We stopped for lunch at Moenjodaro, the ruins of an ancient Buddhist civilisation on the river Indus. A spectacular site, one of the best-preserved of its kind, it was completely exposed to the sun and the temperature was by now 50 degrees. At this point the air conditioning on our bus broke down, and we struggled on with windows fully open, blasted by hot air, to the next city. This heat, or bad food resulting from it, has so far struck down all but two of us. That evening I was violently sick and slept queasily through the next day on the bus, while our worst sufferer was doused by a huge water pipe, thanks to the local knowledge of our police friends. We struggle on - who knows what joys India will bring?
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Jan on

Hello Robert, Hope you and your fellow companions are now feeling better! What an awful time for you all. Thanks also for showing the photo of my daughter being doused! Looking forward to reading the next instalment!

bettybros on

Hi Robert,

Good to hear from you. I can feel the heat from here! I don't imagine it will have cooled down much by the time I join you all. Although, Nepal should be a bit cooler - I hope! Get all the sickness out of the way before I arrive. Only a week and a half of hectic work left, then I'm off. Can't wait!


Revelyne on

Hi Mr.Intrepid... glad to be keeping up with your travels and that you are keeping positive despite some "challenging" times! Big hugs from me. stay safe. x Rev

Max Tookey on

Hey Bob
Your adventures through Pakistan sound amazing and I'm glad that things are going ok - it sounds a fascinating experience! Looking forward to reading your next blog of your time in India! Cheers Max

Ann on

Wonderful picture of Moenjodaro - pre-Indus, rather than Buddhist, though. But I don't envy you the heat!

robertasiapac on

The picture is of a Buddhist Stupa, but I guess that doesn't mean the civilisation was originally Buddhist.

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