So the end of the trip has come and we have seen a great deal of hope and joy along the way. Much needed hope in a country of bad news headlines and fragile peace. Fond farewells to the drivers and to Gul Noor, who have all cared for me as their own.
News that SCA has formed 2 cricket teams from the Afghans in the Kabul and Jalalabad offices…and cricket seems to be the flavour of the moment…the guard at the Compound asks all about the cricket camp, my driver asks me if I can help supply his village with cricket equipment, the soldier searching my car at the airport asks me for a cricket bat ….the beginnings of this sport now firmly planted in Afghanistan.
28 hours and 2 flights later I arrive home. I receive the photos of the last two days of the cricket camp…..and they encapsulate the joy of the event and reinforce determination that we can arrange more in the future. I also receive photos from Elstree school… some of the cricket fixtures this week celebrated cricket in Afghanistan, with all home and away teams wearing caps emblazoned with Afghan Connection Cricket Club ….in solidarity with those boys 3500 miles away in the fields of Jalalabad.