Robert Galbraith in Kandahar – Update

From: Robert J. Galbraith []
Sent: November 19, 2007 12:24 PM
To: David Nicholson; Diana Nicholson
Subject: Insight into the mind of this freelance journalist/Rob in Kandahar

Hello David and Diana, you may think it kind of strange that I send you these personal e-mails for you and all our friends to read, but i think it important for all to see the other side of the journalist, for better or for worse. I am a street or desert journalist, and doing this job, and I love it, has a great effect on ones character and psychological balance (and spelling and grammar as you can easily see). I don’t just write and shoot a feature then head back to comforts of Club Med, at the Kandahar Airfield as many of my so-called colleagues do. I live in Kandahar, Kabul or Spin Boldak, amongst the Afghan people, and that is what it is all about, the missing voice. These mails also let you all realize that I am a human being also, and not just a pen and camera. I have such a huge respect for both of you, and knowing that you both there together, with Tinker and the Black Beast of Westmount, brings happiness to this sometimes dreary and dangerous life I occasionally live. Special thanks to those friends who have written to me from Wednesday-Night. Love! Rob

A message to Phyllis and family;
It is still hot as hell in the day and chilly at night. In fact, I just went to the desk to get another blankie. I was tossing and turning last night from the bomb blast and gun fight, then had to get up at 3:30 am to do a live hit talking about it on Beryl’s radio show. then I was up at 6:30am to track down the damage from the bomb, which is long story but the cops aren’t talking about it as it gives the Taliban publicity, even though they did strike the main police office. They believe it is better to keep the press blind than glorify victories by the Taliban, which I kind of agree with, as long as they don’t hide too much. But they did say they wounded one of the Taliban attackers and have him in custody. I don’t know why they don’t attack my place, there are journalists here and if they take any of us out or wound us they would get good press coverage worldwide. I hope they aren’t reading this, as long as they don’t strike room 33 or 34. A slight flesh wound would have me touring the high paying lecture circuit. … We pick up our tickets for Kabul tomorrow morn. But besides that, there isn’t much you can do here in Kandahar but drink tea and get frustrated that you can’t get right on the front line, but getting there would be sure suicide if you don’t have contacts with the local tribal leaders or war chiefs. But Kandahar is the eye of the hurricane. The Taliban hung some mugger in public today, just down the road in Hellman Province. They are all over the place, including here, but they blend right in with the locals. Most of them are from Pakistan and other bent nations. It’s not fair to the people who live here as they are literally at the ransom of these ignorant fanatical foreigners. With the recent boredom we are starting to go out into the city with a hotel driver at the greatest risk, but we are learning how to do it, such as always looking out the back of the vehicle to make sure we are not being tailed , then taking shots or video. Guido got a little panicked this morning when we walked out on an errand for four blocks and were followed by a small party of Black Turbans, or possible Taliban. Guido was quite nervous but I had my switchblade in my hands ready to stick in one of their throats had they made some sort of move. Well, I guess I had better stop talking like this or you might get the idea that it is dangerous here. I guess I’ll be playing shinny with Brian soon from what you are saying. After afternoons of searching I finally found a Chrysalis of one of the swallowtail butterfly caterpillars I have found in the orange trees here. i will photograph it tomorrow. Got to go lay down and hopefully get some real sleep tonight. had a good supper and tea and will eat my Cadbury fruit and nut chocolate bar in bed. that’s my sedative. Love and miss you so much.

One Comment on "Robert Galbraith in Kandahar – Update"

  1. Terry Ryan December 7, 2007 at 12:03 pm ·

    WOW !!
    So “far” from suburban Toronto, Canada.

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