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100 People 100 Places

To celebrate the release of my first book, Dispatches from the Kabul Café, I’ll be releasing a series of shorter dispatches introducing some of the people and places I encountered during my times in Afghanistan. 100 People, 100 Places are short, personal insights into Afghanistan (and sometimes beyond), revealing the people and the parts of the world that have mattered to me, and perhaps in some way, show who I am.

100 People, 100 Places: Fragile Future, Fragile Gains

November 25th was the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. In Afghanistan, it is estimated that almost 90 per cent of women suffer some form of domestic abuse.  As ActionAid’s Rachel Noble, Women’s Rights Policy Advisor & Research Officer, pointed out, “these women are not victims of violence, but survivors. They are…
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100 People, 100 Places: #Homeland: Feed the Addiction

We are now deep into Series 4 in the UK and I mainlined six episodes last week in preparation for Sunday’sepisode 7. Bliss. It transported me back to my time in Afghanistan during 2007- 2011. Redux took us to the heart of the conflict dealing with the ever present themes of the Taliban, the Haqqani…
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100 People, 100 Places:

horripilation \haw-rip-uh-LEY-shuhn, ho-\ noun 1. a bristling of the hair on the skin from cold, fear, etc.; goose flesh. This is a word everyone should be familiar with!

100 People, 100 Places: Angelina Jolie

Until now I have shunned the spotlight.  The idea of public speaking has long seemed to me quite possibly the worst thing that could happen to a person, a fear shared by so many of us. Hiding behind the printed word has been my cover.   So I had to channel my inner Angelina Jolie(…
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100 People, 100 Places: Barf

Sometimes you just don’t grow up.  It might be apparent, and not happen very often, but on occasion you are catapulted back into being a child and laughing uproariously and uncontrollably at stuff you haven’t laughed at since you were maybe four or five. You discover that your puerile sense of humour you were sure…
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100 People, 100 Places: The Rugweiler

Rahim Walizada designed Afghan carpets with a modern twist and serious artistic flare, and I was completely captivated from the first moment I wondered into his effortlessly cool and sophisticated shop called Nomad in Kabul. While Rahim had low-key charm and charisma, his cousin, who ran the shop on the Kolola Pushta Road, was surly…
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