Thursday, September 3, 2009


This is what I have in mind right now....

After the car bombing near the NATO facility and US Embassy few days before the national election here in Kabul, again I hit the street this morning to shop around for some personal necessities...syempre kasi nga nakakuha ako ng in-country payment e... the rest po ng sweldo ko goes to my hu hu hu!

Although it is an ordinary sight here in Afghanistan seeing Afghan street vendors waving Afghani bills to get attention of their customers on the roads of Kabul, this morning I realized, it is actually an amazing view to see. Holding hundreds of thousands Afhgani bills without somebody watching your back? Afghan's currency is almost equal to our Philippine Peso in terms of US dollar exchange rate.

I could not help but to think and compare how we Filipinos usually negotiate our city street on a daily basis. Absolutely no one can do this trading in our streets in metropolitan areas, without someone or some organized small group snatch your money right from your very hands. As I understand, we even made cellphone snatching has as a specific crime now.

Aside from full-bearded majority, AK-47s, military vehicles, sandbags, soldiers and policemen, one thing that caught my attention the first time I travelled by road outside military base few months back was this scene. I remember seeing those guys doing street trading and holding bundles of papers as they ran back and forth across the highway looking for possible customers amongst motorists. You can see them selling cellphone cards, doing foreign currency exchange, selling fruits, selling clothes and other street tradings. I didn't realize that those were indeed real money amounting to tens of thousand to more than hundreds of thousand. One guy has even more than US$50,000 in his hand...hmmm nice objective for Salisi Gang!

As soon as I got back in the office, I asked my local colleagues, most of them are Pashtu, if this trading practice does not really pose danger to the vendors as they are really vulnerable to robbery, swindling, and other modus operandi of organized street criminals. Our project manager said he never heard of any incident of any street crime against these traders even during times when law enforcers were not around. He said this could be traced back during the Taliban regime where the extremists were so unforgiving to all forms of crimes and probably people had carried over the fear inculcated in them through the years, thus it has become a standing culture in all street business dealings, and of course this is largely part of the teachings in Holy Koran.

Afghan culture, as far as morality is concerned, is really influenced deeply by the strict implementation of Koran's law by the Taliban, where a woman could be killed by her own brothers, father or other relative by suspicion of cohabiting illicitly right on the street where they might meet her at anytime of the day, without persecution on the part of the her slayers. Afghanistan democratic law, however, does not recognize this kind of honor killing any more although still in practice in most provinces out side the cities.

After seeing this in Kabul, I wonder which place is safer? Philippines or Afghanistan...

Money trades in Kabul.
Afghans are trading with bundles of bills right on the street.

Currency Exchange?
You can find it here, sitting duck!
You will never be too afraid to get out from money exchange booth,
as there is no booth at all!

Old Bills Exchange
As the government printed new currency bills,
this Afghan is exchanging old bills with new ones..whew!

Bizjoker with street FOREX local


Bhing said...


pwd bng humingi ng money nila?

nacurious ako bigla, wla bng fake bills jn?

looking forwrd in ur nxt entry...

bizjoker-of-the-philippines said...

Palagay ko meron ding fake bills...
pero itong mga traders na ito mga sanay na kumilatis ng pera...

susubukan ko ngang mangutang e

Salamat sa pagdaan, Bhing...

poging (ilo)CANO said...

daming pera!

pag sa pinas yan...ninakaw na pera mo..katawan mo tignan mo na lang sa diaryo..

headline "ninakawan na,pinatay pa!"

bizjoker-of-the-philippines said...

OO nga e.

may pinapatay nga dahil sa ayaw ipa-snatch ang Noki1 3210 e..
may kaunting pera ka sa bulsa, nagiging paranoid ka na e..pag napunta ka sa mga matao at siksikan..samantala dito bibihira ang nagwa-wallet hehehee!

veronica said...

dili man ko ka-comment sa imong chatbox oe ari nalang ko ha hehehe. daghana baya ana nila'g kwarta oe pwede mangayo lol :)
tulog sa ko ha. good night!

bizjoker-of-the-philippines said...


nganong dili man? ka-comment bitaw ka before..
Anyway, salamat kaayo sa pag anhi ha..
hapit lang ko sa imuha blog...

take care lang 'day.

Pablo (yo) said...

Great blog!!
if you like, come back and visit mine:

Pablo from Argentina

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