The Venice of Pakistan

Mansoor, my immediate reporting head, and I were supposed to leave for Karachi by yesterday’s 6:30pm flight from Islamabad. We were a little late, but that didn’t matter since the flight was supposedly delayed by two hours due to excessive rains in Karachi. We had already checked in so there wasn’t any option but to wait.

The delay was extended till 10pm, but at least we were finally on our way. The good part was that we were bumped up to Business Class and the flight was quite comfortable though the sounds coming from the engines were new to me and could have been cause for alarm. The landing also felt like we had landed on the moon and all this reminded me of a number of funny movie scenes.

After landing in Karachi, the first hurdle was finding a cab. There weren’t enough available and people were already waiting in long queues for them. It must have taken us an hour to get one and we soon found out the reason for this. The whole of Karachi is submerged due to heavy rains and the water shows no signs of receding. Even the main roads were more than a foot under in most places and I heard it is much worse elsewhere. At one place, a whole truck had to be abandoned because it was half submerged.

I guess we’ll find out exactly how bad it is tomorrow, but my shopping plans (including a camera to take photos of these scenes) seem to be dashed. Updates later.