The men were talking about the usual border security and the outgoing Afghan government–American’s puppets they called them. Ahmad was deaf to such talk, instead, his mind wandered cross-border into Pakistan.
His daydreaming, unlike him, was free to roam into Pakistan and drive the off-roader he saw there on his last visit to the Afghan-Pakistan border. He pictured himself behind the wheel zipping past everyone on the road and sending plumes of dust in the air behind him.
A heavy tap to his forehead snapped him back into reality.
“What father,” Ahmad asked befuddled.
“Rahim was kind enough to get you..,” Bahadur looked to his left and motioned towards Rahim.
Rahim handed the kid the envelope and asked him to open it. Ahmad emptied the content on his lap.
Bahadur shrieked, “Alaka careful, you might catapult them into the tea. You don’t know the trouble Rahim went through for this.”
Harbored in the creases of his kameez were two cards! The first one was an Identity card that made his 2 years older and the stretched picture seconded it. The next card he picked up was the Border Permit with his name written in bold.
A wide-eyed Ahmad now held the cards in his hands and looked back and forth towards his father and Kala Kala Saday whose seemed to say ” At last! It dawned upon him at last! ”
“Alaka, you can cross over to Chaman on your own now,” Rahim told him.