Out and About at KAF

I’ve often whinged about KAF being kind of boring. But that is not to say that things don’t change around here…they just change from one kind of boring to another. In our wanderings around this delightful shithole over the last week, I’ve noted some some new stuff and some odd stuff. This post will be about these various sights rather than DFAC cuisine.

The Field of Dreams

If you build it they will come...

We’d been hearing rumours that an Astroturf football field was going to be built for quite some time. In typical KAF fashion, there was a sign saying something to the effect of “Football Field coming soon, Estimated Completion:        “, Yeah, the estimated completion date was blank. At least that’s honest. Anyway, it is finally done. It looks really incongruous on the otherwise beige canvas of the boardwalk but the splash of green is welcome.

They came!

I think, however, they may have made some sort of mistake. I had seen the field one day
and it looked nice and green and complete. It was that bright, unnatural NFL green. A couple of days later I saw them spreading bags of black, seemingly rubberized pellets all over the top of the field and tamping it down with a machine. I asked a couple of Americans who were also watching the process if they knew what the work crew was doing. They figured that “the supervisor is probably on lunch break. He’s gonna come back and say ‘What the hell have you done?” Anyway, the NFL green is now kinda blackish and clouds of these pellets fly up as people run on the pitch. It seems to me that stuff probably provides some sort of cushion but shouldn’t it be under the turf? Mr. Google doesn’t say shit about little rubber pellets and I certainly don’t see it on NFL fields. Anyone know if this is a screw up or not?

Oh man, do those Americans take their football seriously. I watched 8 guys playing 4 on 4 and the quarterback had one of those flip charts with all the plays on them strapped to his arm. He consulted it between each play. I mean, shit guys, there’s only 4 people on your team; how complicated can the plays get? Hell, there were more people watching these 8 guys mess around than usually show up for a CFL game back home. Then again, KAF is even more boring than Regina…and that’s saying something.

If Only…

"I'd like 3 kilos of hygiene and a gross of civility, please"

As the Canadians get ready to complete their pull out from KAF, the amenities put in place for them are closing down. Tim Horton’s has had no donuts for several weeks as they sell off their remaining stock and the CANEX shops are having big sales. I kinda went crazy and bought two chocolate bars at 50% off. I was sorely tempted to pick up some hygiene for some of my cohorts in our quarters but I was doubtful that they’d know how to use it.

I Guess MS Windows Ain’t So Bad

T and I have both been trying to use our corporate bank card to get some cash from the ATMs on the boardwalk. There are two machines but the number working at any given moment averages somewhere between zero and one. Even when they’re working they are finicky and unreliable at the best. For example, sometimes, the screen will just go black in the middle of a transaction and the machine will beep loudly for a minute or two (which is a really long time when you’re standing in front of a bank machine with a line up of 30 impatient people behind you) and then, inexplicably, come back on line asking you to insert your card as if you were never there.

What awesome software design! A great anti-fraud (and anti-legitimate withdrawal) idea.

Recently, though, it’s just been telling us “Transaction Cancelled” and spitting out a receipt of $0 withdrawn. Some clever person, however, somehow decoded the awesome human-machine interface of the thing. It seems you have to slide your fingers down all the buttons on the right hand side of the ATM and then it will sometimes work. They were even nice enough to leave a note for everyone. This worked for many of the people there but, alas, not us. Certainly not something one sees on bank machines in the civilized world. Boy, I’ll be glad when the Kabul Bank opens soon on the boardwalk.

Bye, Bye Baguettes

Oh! Delicious Food. What clever marketing. I guess "Crap Food" didn't get good responses in the focus groups.

Out of the blue, the French PX/Cafe has shut down. That’s a bummer because their smoked salmon baguette was awesome. I don’t think I ever got around to reviewing the place…oh well, too late now.

On the bright side, a new store is taking up residence in the building. It appears to be called “Downtown” and will offer delicious food…I’ll be the judge of that. I wonder if it’s opening soon in the KAF sense or in the normal sense because I’m only here for a maximum of 2 more years.

Bottom Line

KAF is weird. And we’re broke.

“I have just created something totally illogical.” – Ray Kinsella

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3 thoughts on “Out and About at KAF

  1. You had better stock up on some extra good old fashioned cash before heading back in. just in case it’s a while before the Kabul Bank opens….

    as far as the field of green (with black pellets) is concerned, I’m sure by the time you get back, it too will be beige.

  2. Thanks for the KAF update! Wow no TIm Hortons any more…but you can have the ‘KAF Cup’ on your new football field. I so appreciate these posts…my Hon says that, via this and some now departed bloggers, I know more about KAF then he does and he lived there for six months !! LOL !

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