Sunday, March 21, 2010

Corporal Dave Morrison, Information Co-ordinator, Royal Air Force Police

I am asked from time to time to attend local events in villages around Camp Bastion to help out with security and find out what concerns the locals may have. We have got a large event on, with a good crowd gathered to visit a medical clinic. I have to get to work straight away because some of the locals have arrived early.

It’s a really good sign that so many people have showed up even before the security forces from the Afghan National Army and ISAF have pitched up; guess the radio works for local Afghan stations as well as BFBS does for us. Anyway it’s a case of setting up our cam netting and making a shady area to chat to locals in. Who wants to be talking outside in 33 degree if it can be helped?

Since my Pashtun is pretty poor to say the least, I have Mohammad Ali the interpreter to help translate my conversations. Well he says his name is Mohammad Ali….. I enjoy the challenge of adapting my rapport as some people just want to be business like when we talk, whilst others like to sit down and chat and just a few like to jump up and down!

I meet with a variety of local Afghan men with ages ranging from 16 to 60, probably seeing nearly forty. Most are local farmers who by and large are tending wheat crops. They nearly all are saying that the wheat price is pretty good at the moment and seem upbeat on prices they are getting. But like most farmers, they could probably do with a bit more.

There are couple of people whose jobs are more to do with looking after farm machinery and general maintenance. I asked these guys how they are finding using the solar powered water purifier that was installed about a month ago. They said that it was a bit strange at first and people were quite suspicious of it. But, now they have got used to it and it helps a lot. Most of the local villagers are still a little unsure exactly how it runs but at least there are a couple of people now who are getting confident with the day to day running of the kit.

1 comment:

  1. olive A. SaddingtonMarch 30, 2010 at 2:12 PM

    Hi David
    Thank you very much for your interesting account on Facebook about life in Afghanistan. I really appreciate the work that all the boys do out there. My thoughts are with you all
    Love Auntie Olive