Torn

I’m busy trying to tie of as many loose ends as possible. I do hope they won’t unravel without me, and I am trying not to think of hanging around a bit longer to hold them together.

It goes without saying that I am indispensable. My department, the whole organisation, and quite possibly the whole country are in danger of going to the dogs when I leave.

It would help if I had a replacement but as yet I do not. There are projects and plans that I’ve hatched that are only now coming into fruition. I want to see them ripen. I have a team I deeply care about and I want to do right by them. There are parts of this country I still haven’t seen, adventures still to be had.

There are indescribable frustrations and grievances that I’ve carefully nurtured. There are days when I want to be on the first plane out of here, and failing that, have come close to stealing a donkey to ride off on. I want to go home. I want to see what this ‘work-life balance’ people hark on about is like.

I love this country, and this is the best job I could possibly imagine. Challenging but so full. I hate this country and want nothing more to do with it. The work sucks and I want a life outside shitty, dangerous places.

So um, yeah. A bit of a mixed bag then. Swings and roundabouts doesn’t come close. The highs are high and the lows are low, and I can go from one t’other in the time it takes to make a cup of tea.

Still, variety being the spice of life an’ all, I feel alive in a way that almost makes me fear the absence of it.

Still, to sleep perchance to relax, have a good meal, walk down the pub for a pint, then dream.

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9 Responses to “Torn”

  1. Zartosht Ariana Says:

    Hary rud,

    It sounds like you are a creative person but that you could use a little vacation for now.It will refresh you and may even make you more creative .Then you will be ready to bring fresh ideas to a land where new ideas are badly needed as in a pond where no fresh water flows and the water stagnates and become sickening to its inhabitants.This is the reality of Afghanistan;it needs fresh ideas real bad and only individuals like you are most effective in renewing the water of life in the pond of Afghanistan as Afghans are most receptive to persons like you to initiate this critical process.See if you can remember this while away in your comfortable surroundings.

  2. Johan Hoffman Says:

    Hello from Holland.
    Why no pictures on your blog?

  3. Roberta Says:

    We want you back!

  4. Captain Cat Says:

    Ah yes – the great Natalie Imbruglia. Harry, you’ll be back faster than you can make that second cup of tea. I really hope you will be, anyway – if anything so you can buy me dinner next time we’re both in Kabul. In the meantime, enjoy that pint, get some walking in and we’ll take care of things here whilst you’re gone. See you very soon, ensh’allah!

    • harryrud Says:

      I swear on my kaka’s beard that that song wasn’t in my head at the time of writing. ok, so maybe it was but that doesn’t mean i like it.

      there’s a new spanish restaurant in kabul apparently, which i want to try, so maybe i’ll pop back to buy you dinner there…

  5. Marianne Says:

    Maybe Captain Cat is right – I know she’s been back several times and always to do more good work. Or maybe something else will come up – although maybe try not to do what I did and fall in love with someone who wouldn’t dream of moving to Afghanistan. In either case I found that leaving is hard, and kept on being hard for a good while for me. Those mixed feelings still haven’t settled entirely – but if you are tired and frustrated then a rest and a break is wise and although the country probably will go to the dogs without you and I know your team will miss you, there is nothing I admired less that a burned out, jaded, cynical aid worker who had stayed when s/he should have left and I just can’t imagine you like that.

    • harryrud Says:

      Sage advice as ever, though the falling in love bit with someone with enough sense not to want to live in Afghanistan doesn’t seem such a bad idea.

      Is that how you spell sage or is that for the herb? anyways.

  6. Damian Says:

    It goes without saying that I am indispensable. My department, the whole organisation, and quite possibly the whole country are in danger of going to the dogs when I leave.

    That gave me a good laugh. At least you’ve not lost your sense of humour while zooming around on those high roundabouts and low swings.

    Good luck finding work-life balance. And that pint.

  7. North Pacific Observer Says:

    Harry – I have had the same experience with feelings about Afghanistan…. in some ways I feel so much more ‘alive’ there than anywhere else. Maybe because we live closer to our feelings there? not sure what all the factors are.

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