Problog

Hello and welcome to my blog. It is a blog about an Air Force Physician that was reluctantly deployed to Kabul, Afghanistan for 6 months.

I have to admit, I did not exactly volunteer for the deployment, and I was a little anxious about how it would all turn out. I ended up making the best of it, and surprisingly, I actually had a pleasant, life changing, experience.

I decided to keep the blog up and running because I kept on hearing, "Why is it that you only hear the bad news coming from Iraq and Afghanistan." I figured that I was helping spread a positive message about what we are doing over. Even more important, I wanted to continue to spread the word about the plight of the Afghan people, 99.9% of which are the most incredibly friendly people that you will ever meet. The title picture is a great example of that. I have never encountered such genuinely warm and friendly people. It was so strange to see so many people with so little material objects, yet at the same time, filled with so much of the joy that comes with close family ties, abundant friends, and a close knit community. We could definetly learn a lot from them.

You may notice, as you read the blog in its entirety, my arc. I shift from focusing on myself and my personal comforts, to shifting my focus on the Afghan cause. It is very easy to get distracted by the hustle of daily life and the comforts that the U.S. provides. It is really a challenge to awake from that coma and to start to care and think about the welfare of other people unrelated to you. I think it really took me about 4 or 5 months before I really opened my eyes and became personally affected by what I was experiencing. I hope I was able to recreate it.

I have tried to keep the blog squeaky clean so as to not offend anyone (or get me in trouble-I am still in the military). Even though I am a political junky with very strong personal opinions I have been steadfast in keeping this site free of any politics. I was called to do a job and I tried to do it to the best of my ability regardless of my political stance.

I recreated the blog to read more like a book, or should I say blook (get used to the corniness it only gets worse from here) just to make it an easier read. I have removed some names and pictures just to keep it more anonymous. I hope that it helps in making it less about me and more about the cause.

Lastly, in the spirit of the blog, I decided to include the Chipin Widget that I used to raise money for Nazia. If I get any additional money I will send the funds to The Women of Hope Project and someone over in Kabul will discretely give it to her (unless I hear otherwise). You can also contribute directly to the Women of Hope Project website. They are a wonderful cause. If you enjoy this blog then feel free to contribute. I am sure that once you read her story you will be very moved.

So kick back. Get ready to hopefully laugh and definitely cry.
If you like what you read then post a comment. I will be continuously editing this site in an attempt to improve it. Who knows maybe one day it will become a book!

Enjoy. Thanks for reading.

-Shazdoc

Today Show Clip

Chipin Widget

Friday, May 9, 2008

Pure Ghee

“Don’t rush to act on great ideas. Great ideas are like colds; it takes a few days before you realize you have a bad one.”

-Shazdoc, physician, Afghan mentor, amateur blogger

I have to apologize in advance for the quality of my blog. My writing staff is currently on strike. Regarding my quote, the Afghan Community Service Idol idea no longer sounds like a very good idea anymore. I am just going to rename it Shazdoc Spotlight on U.S. /Afghan Community Service Projects and continue to feature projects every so often . I have had other stinker ideas recently as well. I had a "great idea" to sponsor an Afghan family during Christmas realizing shortly after that they do not celebrate it of course. I asked the interpreter today if they celebrate anything similar in December and he said that there is a “Big Eid” that takes place during the first week. So if I find the right family I may set up a Big Eid Drive for an Afghan family.

Yesterday I added a few new features to my site. One is a depot for all of my Afghan videos since I now know how to load them. Today I included a short clip of the orphanage visit. I will try and get more footage. It will be a multimedia Kabul blogsperience. Just be happy that I lack the ability to upload smell because I would not hesitate to upload the scent of burning tires just to make it more realistic. I also added a Shazdoc news article site. So far nothing has been published but I have a few things in the works so standby.

I saw a billboard today that made me laugh. Here it is:


Apparently Ghee is a vegetable substitute for animal lard. It is used in place of animal lard which is essentially pig fat and Muslims are prevented from consuming any pork. The words, perfect taste and perfect flavor, just seem ironic when you consider that they are describing vegetable lard. To me Ghee almost sounds like a bad word. I picture someone saying, “I think we are in some deep ghee!”

Today we met at the old clinic and had a very productive meeting. We were treated to Kabobs at lunch. It was a very special occasion for them. They mainly eat rice for lunch so eating Kabobs is a really big deal. Here is a picture:

We each had our own big plate. Of course, it came with naan. We also learned how to correctly say, “How are you,” which is, “Chetor asti.” Not to be mistaken for, “Shetor asti” which means, “You are a big camel.”

Coming home we had to take a big time detour because they were flying in some of the dead and injured from yesterday's bombing. It is all very sad to think about. I hear a lot of children were killed and injured. The violence just does not make any sense to me. I hear that Hamid Karzi has declared 3 days of national morning. I am not sure how this will effect our travel. We will have to see.

Check out the orphanage and the bread house video if you have not already see them. I should be adding more in the coming days. Thanks for reading.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi there

Just wanted to let you know that ghee is clarified butter not vegetable lard.

manminder said...

International food regulations do define pure ghee as 99.99% milkfat/butterfat and 0.01% moisture being anhydrous milkfat. However, there are many cases of manufacturers packing products which are technically ghee substitutes but labelled as ghee/pure ghee and constitute of either vegetable oils (technically vanaspathi) or animal fats such as tallow, lard or fish oil or a blend of both vegetable and animal fats. Question is whether the brand of so-called ghee shown in your blog is indeed a pure ghee or a misrepresentation. Need feedback from someone of knowledge or authority.

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