3000 Words And No Pictures About A Visa Run Between Iraq And Turkey…

Eventually we arrive at a room, on the door of which is written: Residency Office and in which sit two men, smoking – they take my little piece of paper and give it a jolly good stamping. Then they ask me how I am, in English. I delightedly reply that I am fantastic, but wondering whether this is in fact anything to do with the Turkish border or have I just applied for some sort of Iraqi residency? Unable or unwilling to shed any light on this matter, which they make clear is of no interest whatsoever to them, they peruse my (British) passport and offer me an almond.

Driving across the Nineveh Plain on the first sunny day in weeks. Emerald green everywhere, like drinking a colour. There’s still snow on the mountain tops fringing this huge expanse of low flat. Signs of conflict are everywhere. The road is broken sporadically by haphazardly strewn concrete crash barriers, pushed apart to let vehicles use the road now that this is no longer close to the fighting. Many are pockmarked, split and crumbling in parts. Now a handy perch for the smiling children sitting atop them, swinging their legs and hawking sodas and bottled water, their usage has morphed into something more benign. Continue reading “3000 Words And No Pictures About A Visa Run Between Iraq And Turkey…”