Friday, April 24, 2009

Pakistan by the Numbers (Brodi style)

Home from Pakistan status: Home.

I've been sitting at my computer for a long time, trying to figure out how in the heck to blog about my trip. Where to start? Where to stop? What should I have for breakfast? (OK, I'm also hungry).

So, I figured I'd follow the old adage, and eat the country, one bite at a time.

Today will be an overview, and next week I will delve into the specifics.


Number of hours travel time to and from Pakistan: 72

Number of security checks just to get into our hotel: 3

Number of bodyguards for me: 1
(The Major. For the first few days, I thought his actual name was "Major" only spelled something more Urdu-ish, like "Mehyjooh". And I kept wondering, "Why is this guy following me around everywhere, looking extremely forbidding?" I grew to absolutely love him. More about the Major next week.)

Number of times I got sick from the food: 1
Yay! I consider this a feat, since everyone usually gets sick a lot more their first time. It's a spice thing. Lesson learned: when they ask if you like spice, say, "a little." Don't say, "Heck yeah. Load it up!"

Number of times the driver Olfat had to rush me home because I was sick: 1

Number of cars Olfat butted in front of to get me through the security line at the hotel: 20

Number on the thermometer: 104

Number of times I got heat stroke: 1

Number of times I told people (during bout with heat stroke) "It's snowing where I come from": 28
(But it's okay, because it sounded slurred when I said it)

Number of times the power went out at the hotel on a daily basis: 10

Number of times the crappy internet connection prevented me from blogging: 382
(So, sorry for the blogless Wednesday.)

Number of little children I scared the mush out of, just by smiling at them: 5
(I figured somethig out: little babies were okay with the way I looked, children 5 years and older were fascinated, everyone in between was scared spitless). Who'd have thunk it? I look scary.

Number of times I asked to ride in a rickshaw: 40

Number of times the Major wouldn't allow it: 39

Number of times I rode in a rickshaw: 1
(There's something to be said for persistance)

Number of times Seru and I laughed in the rickshaw: Constantly
Number of times the rickshaw driver looked at us like we were nuts: 7

Number of cars following five feet behind, making sure nothing happened to us: 1

Number of trees I planted: 2

Number of trees I planted and then subsequently drowned: Just 1

Number of banners announcing my arrival: 10 (that I counted)

Number of bouquets with which I was presented: 2

Number of times I was asked for an autograph: 1
Number of times my ego exploded because of aforementioned banners, bouquets and autographs: 382

Number of banners I brought home to hang above my garage: 1

Number of times I was offered tea: 1,873,450

Number of times I felt threatened: 0

Number of people witnessed riding one tiny moped scooter: 5

Number of plaques presented to me: 1
(Etching: "Presented to Ms. Brodi Ashton on her first visit to Pakistan". Again, contributing to said ego trip).

Number of new friends made: countless
Number of kindred spirits: countless
Number of times I cried when saying goodbye to new friends: None.
Preposterous to even think it. I never cry. Not only because my medication prevents that sort of thing, but because I just don't cry.

Okay, I cried like a little girl.

Number of Pakistani's I invited to come live with me: Every single one I talked to.

Comments are back on! At least, I'm trying to put them back... hang tight. Please know my friends in Pakistan are now reading this, so you can say hi to them as well!


  1. I've enjoyed seeing the pictures and glad you had a wonderful (and safe) time! Can't wait to see the rest of your trip-wrap-up-blog!

  2. welcome home brodi!
    sounds like an awesome trip~
    i want to drive by and see your banner above your garage! LOL

  3. Sounds like an amazing trip! I'm very excited to hear about the rest. We must dine and dish soon.

  4. Thanks, y'all. I think I'll have enough Pakistani blogs to last a year!

  5. Brodi! I'm so glad you made it back safe and sound. Can't wait to hear all the stories....which will hopefully be next Thurs., April 30th at Bree's house.

  6. Hee, DO look scary :) Glad you had a good trip - I would never have survived the food!

  7. You are a Model, Dairy Princess!

    Booyah, and welcome home!

    Love to all your new friends!

  8. What a trip! How fun to finally get to see everything Sam does over there. How often does Sam go? It seems this is the 2nd or 3rd time I've seen. Love the 'by numbers'.

  9. Valynne- I'm so there!

    Cam- I almost didn't survive the food. Luckily, my hotel had french toast.

    Emily- yes, compared to the cows, I was beautiful.

    Debbie- this is his third trip. In the future, he'll go 3 or 4 times a year.

  10. All I can say is WOW!!!Please tell me everything!!!

  11. So glad that you are home! I really miss coming over to visit. Glad you had a wonderful time, look forward to seeing more pictures and hearing all about it. Hope you were sitting down when you read this I wouldn't want you to fall, because I actually commented! WOW!

  12. Alyssa- I'm going to try. It may take all year.

    Anne- I did black out. Wow!

  13. What a great experience!! You looked like you were a movie star over there.... I mean who gets a banner welcoming them:) How great to be able to experience what Sam does when he goes over there. I can't wait to hear more!!!:) P.S How do you know Bree? I grew up with her

  14. Janae- Bree and I are sister authors. Meaning, we have the same agent. (Her book sold in January, and it's set to come out in December 09!) We're also in a writing group together. And she's nice enough to put up with my manic swings during the whole publishing process.

    What a small world!

  15. Don't worry. I'm British Pakistani and even I can't stomach the food. You're lucky you only got ill once. I once went for two weeks and came back home about 8 lbs lighter.

    When I go, I live off Italian food and Diet Coke. Pakistan has a lot of Italian restaurants.