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Published: November 10th 2017
Geo: 31.5497, 74.3436
The drive from Islamabad to Lahore was relatively uneventful, almost missed not having the Police escort.
Upon entering Lahore we promptly were stopped at a Military check point….. evidently a Cantt, which is short for Cantonment which is basically a Military Zone which means…… no foreigners can enter. So we were asked to pull over for passport check, then we were informed the Major was coming down (gee I thought we are not that important… however if he wants to meet us all well and good)….then when he arrived our passports were sent his way and I started to think things were astray.
The Major was a nice chap and basically said we had entered a restricted zone and our passport Pakistan Visa had a stamp next to it forbidding us entering any Military Zone….. WTF…. Both Lisa and I looked at each other and thought oh bugger. He then informed us the Pakistan Intelligence service was on their way to ask us some questions.
I put on the dumbest face I could and said…. Sir I am extremely sorry…. We are just silly tourists following the Blue arrow on our GPS….. he smiled and said no problem once the intelligence people
check us out we should be on our way…… really (apparently its complicated!!!).
Anyway…. They arrived and did not look too menacing. I stated our case again and there was a lot of chatting in the local lingo. One and a half hours later we came to a compromise…. I found the opportune time to offer we go to a different hotel in the opposite direction and this idea seemed to strike home… I am sure they said to each to each other something like… lets let the silly foreigners go…. Surly they are too dumb to be spies, if we keep them then we will have to lock them up and feed them, look at the man (me) look at his hair good grief the is ugly and the girl dam she has an attitude, lets let them go for our sake…… well that is my take on it anyway.
Oh and the general opinion with them was our car look dangerous…. Be buggered it's the millions of crazy Pakistanis on the road that are dangerous…. And besides it meets all ADR's… that more than we can say of your vehicles… haha.
Oh and another thing there was no sign indicating we
were entering a Cantt…. So bugger off.
That evening we had been in contact with the Germans who were keen to catch up with us and travel together again. So after much internet surfing Thomas found a possible place, Saint Hilda's right next to an Anglican Church.
So off we went in the morning found the place and low and behold get stopped by a Police Man…. Yep… he asked in fine English why did you just come down a one way street…. I said what…. He then stated he was going to fine us…. Lisa piped up and got the scary eye's going and let fly…. He let us go.
We walked to the entrance gate of the church and was ushered in to a gentleman called John Joseph. Sat down and he just simply asked how he could be of service… unbelievable we asked if we could camp in the church grounds because we had heard of other doing the same. Of course he said.. we have done it before.
So here we sit in St. Hilda grounds safe secure and away from the noise outside the gate. Oh and by the way there is heavy security at the gate….. something about
a Christian church in the middle of Muslim Pakistan…. Lisa seemed to be worried…. I recon it's a fantastic opportunity.
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