Gulping back the tears, my throat is thick, I know if I open my mouth as I will not be able to control the sobbing any longer. I sit silent in the back of the Red Crescent pickup truck, my bike is securely tied down on the back with our entire luggage surrounding it. My friends stand back and wave goodbye as we drive down my street for the last time. I still don’t trust myself to speak, I remain silent and reflect on all the people who have touched my heart in this little city.
This wasn’t how I thought I would leave Gilgit. Up and until yesterday I thought I was going to ride down the Karakorum Highway for the last time on my motorcycle. However, my adopted Gilgit family had other ideas and feel responsible for me until I leave Pakistan or maybe forever.
I had been waiting for six weeks for my Iran Authorisation Code to be allowed to apply for my Iran visa in Islamabad, I had been waiting so long I was worried my Pakistan visa would expire and I would have to make a visit to China to obtain a new visa on arrival at the Pak-China border. However at the 11th hour I received my code and had just enough time to make quick dash to the Iran border, with a quick stop off in Islamabad to receive my Iran visa. Boy, this was going to be super tight and extremely scheduled something that really didn’t fit in with me anymore as I like to let things flow in its own time. I had been in Pakistan for nearly six months and still didn’t have enough time for everything.
I didn’t even have enough time to say all the goodbyes I wanted. So many people became a part of my life, it was no wonder my throat stayed thick. But eventually I am conned back into talking as we make our way down the Karakorum Highway. Peering through the window of the pickup truck, I silently say goodbye to everyone and everything I see and think of.
Note: Sorry for the lack of photos, my eyes kept steaming up the lens.