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    • Day 216–217

      quetta police station

      April 18 in Pakistan ⋅ ☁️ 11 °C

      the second day of the escort was the most adventurous one. we saw multiple accidents on the roadside, dozens of flooded road sections and ran into a huge traffic jam collumn consisting purely of those typical pakistani pimped out trucks. the police got us through by skipping the line. one of the bikers also fell in a curve because of the slippery surface and the rain, but he was okay.

      the checkpoints got denser and denser and the escort size increased with time. as we were passing a mountain pass just before quetta, we were even accompanied by the anti terrorist squad for a while. all of them were super chill though. normally, i'd have a bunch of pictures with guns, but i had to transfer all of them into a cloud because some countries really don't like to find them in a phone search.

      late at night, we finally made it quetta. right from the go, it was a different world. everywhere you look, there's something crazy going on, chaos everywhere. but i actually liked it and got really excited for the rest of pakistan. that exitement seized rather quickly as we were brought to our hotel, though.

      if they don't allow you to stay at the police station, the bloom star hotel is the end point for everyone that makes the crossing, as you can clearly tell by looking at the sticker-filled glass front. the problem is, since the police force you to stay there, the hotel can pump up the prices at will. they charged us a comical amount, and we flat out refused to pay and told them we'd just sleep right in front of the reception. i was already half asleep in the lobby chair, when elias finally managed to haggle them down to an expensive, but somewhat acceptable price and we finally got a couple hours of sleep in.

      the next day, we waited 3 hours until our escort finally came to drive us to some office to get our paperwork done. basically, we needed a document that stated how and when we would leave belochistan and that we'd be responsible for ourselves from there on out. elias, matthieu, anna and dimitri were all planning on going to islamabad to get the lengthy indian visa process started, so i decided to join them.

      because the people from the office told us that we could take a train to the capital later that day, we agreed on going as a group. back at the police station in quetta, we were now told that trains only run in the morning and because our document said "by train", we weren't allowed to take a bus either. so, one more day of waiting it is. this time, after a lot of arguing, we were allowed to put our tents on the roof of the police station instead of going back to that godforsaken hotel.

      this time, everything finally worked out and we were brought first to a breakfast place (btw, my stomach was already killing me from the pakistani food i had had so far, little did i know that feeling would last more than a month) and then to the train station. after a lot of stress and confusion with the authorities, we got a tiny 6-bed bunk compartment in the very back of the train and finally said goodbye to quetta, the city that had kept us for way too long.
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    • Day 74


      November 15, 2016 in Pakistan ⋅ 🌙 6 °C

      Wir sind total fremdbestimmt. Die Eskorten rüsten nochmals auf. Von nun an sind die Wagen vollgepanzert. Ist hier die Wiege des Bösen? Wir können es nicht einschätzen. Zumal der Panzer auf Rädern auch nur Schrittgeschwindigkeit vor uns fährt. Ist das nun sicherer? Die Stadt wirkt wie ein riesiger Moloch. Elektrizität gibt es kaum als wir gegen 21:00 Uhr in Quetta ankommen. Dafür umso mehr Smog. Die Mischung aus beidem plus das Chaos aus Menschen, Märkten, Tieren und Müll...aufeinander, übereinander, ineinander...erinnert mich stark an eine Mad Max Dystopie.

      Das Hotel ist ein Gefängnis. Zu unserem Schutz wir dürfen nirgendwo hin. Die Pässe werden uns, wie immer, abgenommen. Überraschung, wir müssen zwei Tage hier bleiben. Wir brauchen ja das NOC Eskortierungsdokument. Okay. Am nächsten Tag in dem Office ist unsere Hauptbeschäftigung warten. Wir hören, dass sie Informationen über 9 Selbstmordattentäter haben, die es auf Touristen abgesehen haben - soft targets. Bestimmt nur eine Räubergeschichte - hoffentlich.

      Am Abend treffen wir noch einen Motorradreisenden. Bernhard, hat sich in Kathmandu eine Royal Enfield gekauft und fährt sie nach Hause. Wo kommt er her? Aus Mühldorf! (Zentrale der Südostbayernbahn). Wir verstehen uns auf Anhieb und verabreden uns auf ein Bier im Deutschland. Er ist auf seine Reise gestartet mit 5 kg Würsten aus Süd Tirol. Man soll ja nur das Wichtigste mitnehmen 😄
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    You might also know this place by the following names:

    Quetta, كويته, Kvetta, Горад Квета, Куета, কোয়েটা, Kvéta, Kveta, کویته, क्वेटा, UET, クエッタ, კვეტა, 퀘타, ക്വെറ്റ, क्वेट्टा, ਕੋਇਟਾ, Kweta, کوئٹہ, کوټه, Кветта, ක්වේටා‍, Квета, குவெட்டா, เควตตา, Ketta, 奎達

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