Summer 2009

As mad as it may seem I am very pleased my wife Karyn and I have reached within one foot of India at the Waga border with Pakistan having driven from London on board a 1970 MG, 6000 km.

It was a great delight to travel across such a vast distance and be able to enjoy, even try and appreciate the changing face of this world – West into East – Europe into Asia. What a wonderful picture it is to be able to look over people’s back walls into the towns and villages that make up their lives on this changing 12,000 km overland journey.

And not just from the landscape, but the different cultures with the changing variety of people this brings.  But the people do not change across this highway. The culture may, their religions certainly, but the people are hospitable and outgoing all across the vast expanse we travelled.

Iran is so different to the political and journalist news stories. Other than being very warm and friendly towards us, the Iranians were determined to show they are not a nation of terrorists determined to destroy Israel. On the contrary, they were very keen to dislocate themselves from a Government keen on strong anti western rhetoric. A number of Iranians even called Jews their brothers! A Government out of tune with it people?

The great highlight was Baluchistan. And it was hot. The sands blew. The road disintegrated. Helman province 20 miles to the north. We had armed security guards in Iran and in Pakistan the army dug us out of sands of the desert.

Karyn did comment that crossing this vast desert in an open top, 1970 MG, was not the car of choice for such adventures. (I remember dear Klaus also making such a point!) And for a short time I did think Karyn and Klaus might have been right. But we survived with the MG giving us the feeling of hot sun on our necks and sand of the desert in our hair… ….

Balushistan is a vast untouched land I will explore at a latter date. I accept Baluchistan is 4×4 territory, with its vast mountain ranges between endless deserts and as the Baluch people told us they have one of the world’s most stunning coastlines. For another Time.