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Making New Friends: Daily Life in Charming Afghanistan (In Dari)    
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Today’s Enlightening Entertainment will be presented in Dari and English, with subtitles in Arabic, Aulacese (Vietnamese), Chinese, English, French, German, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Malay, Mongolian, Persian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Thai.

Welcome warm-hearted viewers. Today, we invite you along on a visit to Afghanistan to make new friends and have a glimpse into the real daily lives of the Afghan people.

On the streets of Kabul, we met two frequent foreign visitors to Afghanistan from the United States and Greece who shared their impressions.

I’m from Los Angeles, California [USA]. We find the people very friendly and very helpful to us. Yeah, I found the cashews are good!

I am from Greece. And I find this place interesting. Its people are very nice. Culture is very interesting too. The food is very nice, very nice. I am from Greece, like I told you, same cooking, so I like it, has good taste. The naan? Naan is good. If you’re hungry, you just eat one naan, you don't need anything else, you're good for the whole day.

Naan, or bread, sure sounds delicious. Pretty soon, we were lured by the smell of fresh-baked naan and other delicious treats being sold along the streets of Kabul.

Viewers of Supreme Master TV! Some of the foods of… or dining products that are sold in Afghanistan, one of them is the fig, which is relatively first… it is moist… After being collected from the trees, they dry it. They put it in the sun, after that... It is like… shriveled, and from inside, all of them are interconnected… something dry, very simple… also it is very sweet and relatively useful. Can you tell me how much do you sell for a kilo of it? How many people buy this?

Dear brother, a kilo costs 250 afghani. People make use of it well, they buy it more, because it is very curative for the illnesses. Sportsmen use it very much. When I sell daily, I get 400, 500 afghani… People buy figs a lot, I sell four or five kilos a day.

As he said, the people who use it a lot are the athletes, I think… Is it allowed if I eat one of them?

Very… very sweet. Very nutritious. Well, Fawad! Can you talk about these walnuts, pistachios, peanuts and figs, and these dried fruits that you have, when do people use them?

The people of Afghanistan use it very well because it is their native product. And they use peanuts when the weather is a bit colder. And dried fruits are like pistachio and almonds… Salty pistachio, walnuts, peanuts, almonds, raisins, chickpeas, these are used very well When the weather is cold because they are warming.

Those guests who go to the friends’ house, always use these and eat them with tea. And also foreigners use them. They (dried fruits) go to China, to Russia… Then it goes to Iran more, people use them as such. In India also people buy. Prune is also Afghanistan’s fruit. Someone who has got fever or beaten by fever, use this and buy it for curing headaches.

My name is Hashmat Khalil, one of the shopkeepers in Sahrenaw. This is one of the Afghan desserts, which is made from cane. And in the province of Jalalabad, it is sowed and is obtained from cane, and people of Afghanistan like this very much… which especially they buy for breakfast. And after meals people also buy it for tea. They boil cane, and then after it is boiled very well, it reaches ripeness. Then it changes into gur, which is made of cane water. It tastes sweet like sugar.

In Kabul, we also met some new friends who welcomed us with Afghans’ famous hospitality. Meet Mr. Ghulam Mohd Malikyar, executive director of Save the Environment – Afghanistan, and his son Nejat Malikyar, a university student.

Tea is the first hospitality in Afghan cultures. Anytime you come to a house or to visit relatives or friends, the first, without question and without asking, they bring you tea, tea with candies, tea with sweets or without any sugar, but tea is the first sign of hospitality. Then at lunch time, they insist the guests not to leave to have lunch together. If the guest have some other important jobs, he can go, but normally, the host insist guest to stay. In the morning and during day time, when you’re tired, tea is the… (Anytime.) Anytime you drink tea.

And what kind of tea do you drink?

Black and green tea. Normally after a meal, we have fruits, but depends to the personal appetite.

Also, they grow some kind of vegetables in their yards just for their guests, actually, not for their own self. Like cucumber, carrot, something else. This the major habits of Afghan people.

In Afghan culture, the table spread or setting is on the floor. It is called dastarkhan. No matter what one’s economic status, creating a beautiful and abundant dastarkhan is important, especially for guests. On a large cloth, the foods are arranged for the guests to easily access the special foods.

The foods, they are like vegetables. Actually we should explain the vegetables that contains salads and carrot, lemons… In a napkin of Afghans, usually we put bread. Another thing that we call it, I don't know what other people call it, it has vinegars and many thing else, we put vinegar, carrot, and other kind of vegetables, natural vegetables, salad, we make, and we can call it achar, this is achar. And this is the cauliflower that we with can make it. Afghan people like these things actually.

This table spread of Afghan foods – salad, the pickle or achar, and cauliflower curry, are traditional favorite foods among Afghan people.

All of the family should be here in one place to eat because filial feelings is more important for Afghan people. If you’ve ever gone to any shops that people, like, are their working, cooperating with each other, four, five persons will be eating from the same dish, all of them in one time with hands. But some people like to eat with spoon, but a lot of people like to eat with hands actually, because they tell that the taste will be more than with a spoon, it's a kind of habit gotten from fathers actually.

Nejat mentioned that the pure original customs of Afghanistan can be found in the rural areas. Let’s find out by exploring outside Kabul. Mr. Ali Hussain Bigzad, a finance officer for the governor of Bamyan Province, invited us to a beautiful village in Bamyan.

The peaceful Shah Foladi Village in central Afghanistan is 240 kilometers northwest of the capital Kabul. An elder of the village, Mr. Haji Izzatullah, welcomed us in his household, where his friends have gathered to pray and enjoy one another’s company.

It is our Islamic belief that we should come together. We have prayers. How many days are left for Muharram (month)?

Thursday, on Thursday we have a reading here. During Muharram We have ten religious days.

The villagers mainly are crop farmers.

The situation of farmers currently has been in good condition, with God’s benevolence. Our condition is good. Potatoes… what else is there? Lucerne (alfalfa)… among other herbs. There’s lucerne (alfalfa). Then, there is lentil, beans… and things like that are among the cereals that we sow. From potatoes then, people prepare their evening food of course of different kinds… They make bolani (bread with vegan filling), they make chips, and then some families prepare some other things as well. From wheat, they get flour and make bread.

The women of the Shah Foladi Village are strong and devoted in their daily work. The labor of love of the women who wear colorful and beautiful attire maintain the smooth life of the entire village.

As for the children, they go to school and are raised with a lot of love.

Well, they are our children. We love them more than the light of our eyes. We try to educate them, raise them with a good education… Even though they’re younger, we won't get angry with them. We don’t beat them, don’t threaten them because it will weaken their morality.

Here in rural Afghanistan, we learned more about the specially warm traditions of welcoming guests.

The guest comes, we step out of the door, we welcome the guest. “Please! you have brought purity! Please sit down.” They sit down. We give respect, we offer some food for them, we offer them some tea. Then, we would try if it was late, to have the guests sleep over night. If the guest intended to go we escort them to the door. “Welcome! Goodbye! Go in God’s shelter!”

We were also invited to another delicious meal upon another beautifully laid out dastarkhan (table spread).

Before starting the meal or the foods, so, there is a custom that we wash hands of the guest or or others who are going to have a meal. Yes, this is the custom. It is as usual for the foreigners and also for the families, yes, the same. BBefore starting the foods and after having the lunch or dinner or breakfast, just we will wash the hands.

After sharing this delicious meal together in the delightful countryside, we learned that it really is more delicious to eat with the hands! Later, Haji Izzatullah and friends enjoy naan and tea together.

In the village market, another family-run naan bakery here is enjoying a constant flow of customers. The baker, Mr. Muhammad Jan, proudly introduced his daily specialty.

This is the bread often used among people in Afghanistan. This is the bread that people use, and then the whole people of Bamyan… In any part of Afghanistan, it is this bread that people use. It is an ordinary bread. It’s been nearly 30 years that I'm in this work. This is my job as a baker.

I’m flattening the bread here. I'm doing the roller’s job. Well, there is nothing else really special about it.

I flatten it, I design it, then… Everyone has a job here.

Well, when you use this design for this, does it help in the baking of the bread? Like the way the bread should be baked?

Whatever people like, we do it accordingly.

Twenty-five of them get baked in this oven.

In a day, how many breads do you do bake?

In one day… two thousand breads.

Thanks.

Thanks.

Thanks.

Thank you as well.

Greetings,

Greetings. Thank you as well for coming and asking about us. We are very thankful to you. We are happy. We hope you return to your homeland in safety.

As we left, the warmth of the lively naan bakery at the marketplace accompanied us all the way back to the capital city, Kabul.

With deep thanks and best wishes to all our new friends, may Allah bless the Afghan people with abundant peace and joy.

Kind viewers, thank you for your company today. Now, please stay tuned to Supreme Master Television for Words of Wisdom, after Noteworthy News. May your heart be carefree and happy.
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