Back in the Saddle

Lhe_Fort.jpgWell after a small break I am glad to be posting here again. But I can’t blame myself, because I was mostly on the road and did not have much time to sit before the computer. As a matter of fact, I spent the entire last week on the road, in cafes, clubs, colleges, and universities in Lahore and by all means it really was a unique experience.

Lahore and Islamabad are two unique cities and by no means can be compared. I would however hold nothing back from the “Lahoris” on the notion of they being some of the most jolly and out going people I have met in Pakistan. No matter where you go in Lahore, people are very welcoming and quite hospitable. Food is available round the clock in every variety (of course they don’t have much entertainment than to eat) Whatever one might say Lahori’s sure now how to cook and tantalize your taste buds.

They love movies too. Despite the debilitated state of Lollywood and cinema scene, you can always drop into a cinema to enjoy a good movie. However, I think the movie is never the fun part, it’s the crowd that’s there. The diversity in outfits, make up and accent is awesome and hilarious as well.

They don’t have Margalla Hills though. For an outdoor sort of person like me, that’s the biggest disadvantage. You cant really enjoy the outdoor environment in Lahore. The traffic, and dust. It’s all incapacitating. My legs which are tuned to vertical terrain, felt sort of odd walking in the flat horizontal world of shopping malls.

Which brings me to shopping in Lahore. By far those in Lahore who know how to dress, really know their niche. No matter if you like designer ware or not, you can get it from Lahore. Even if you cant afford the expensive design suits and trousers you can easily walk up to a master tailor and he will cut a suit for you, that in many cases might actually look better than the original. Those who are careful about the style and fashion they carry should perhaps visit the land of NCA and Pakistan School of Fashion Design.

Having said that, no city in Pakistan can boast of better education institutions than Lahore. It’s the seat of learning with heavy weights such as LUMS, UET Lahore, Pakistan School of Fashion Design, Government College University, NCA, Lahore School of Economics, Atchison College and King Edward Medical College. You can’t get better than that anywhere in Pakistan, and these folks sure know how to party as well apart from excelling in academics.

So where can you party till dawn and move on nerve bending goose bump beats of Tribal House, Pure Rave, Techno, Trance you name it. You can do it in the suburbs in Lahore, such as on Baidiyan road. I did have the opportunity to go to one of those on the New Years eve private parties and it was truly a mind boggling experience.

Despite all the good stuff, I believe the biggest problem in Lahore is the population explosion and the traffic. No where can you be as close to nature as you can be in Islamabad. Secondly, I think people in Islamabad on the road are slightly more trustworthy, and the crime rate is definitely much lower in Islamabad. In some sectors of Islamabad, you really don’t realise that you are in Pakistan. That’s natural to Islamabad. In Lahore you have to “travel” to specially designed housing societies, which don’t even come close to the epic scenery you take for granted here in the Capital.

People in Lahore are more street smart, you cant trust any other Tom Dick and Harry on the road and have to watch your back (or front) before someone takes advantage of your guards down. Islamabad is a bit laid back. I can mostly trust people on the road (and have many times) for correct directions or in wake of any force majeur.

Islamabad is realtively a new city, and Lahore has a history and culture of a thousand year and more. You can see it written all over the place in artifects like the Lahore Fort, Badshahi Mosque, Shalimar Garden etc

By and large it was a truly out of he world experience being in Lahore. It’s a different world and definitely worth visiting by the average Islooite

9 Comments so far

  1. Hasan Mubarak (unregistered) on January 8th, 2007 @ 11:21 pm

    well, well, well; I must say that your post deserves a guest entry at LMB. That was so welcoming to read about your experience. We’ll definitely refer it in our next blog entry!!

  2. A for [pine]Apple (unregistered) on January 9th, 2007 @ 12:08 am

    They dont have margallas but they’re quite fond of their Shimla pahari in bagh e Jinnah ;-) and you certainly missed cucoo’s den in lhr too :P

    Islamabad’s still a baby yet to born when compared to historic background of lahore … but still the youngest baby is the most loved one too … !

  3. 1967 (unregistered) on January 9th, 2007 @ 9:54 am

    I will be comming to Lahore again for the Basant event. Will try to cover the event up and post here at Islamabad MB if it makes sense.

  4. Nosheen (unregistered) on January 9th, 2007 @ 4:10 pm

    YUP it makes lot of sense.aakhir dil to lahori hay…… :P

  5. Ali Choudhury (unregistered) on January 10th, 2007 @ 3:58 pm

    “Having said that, no city in Lahore can boast of better education institutions than Lahore.”


  6. 1967 (unregistered) on January 10th, 2007 @ 4:05 pm

    Thanks for pointing it out Ali. I have made the correction now.

  7. mo (unregistered) on January 11th, 2007 @ 6:46 am

    I’d love to visit Lahore. If I ever get to Pakistan, its on my to do list.

    Where are the night clubs and bars at?

  8. Ali Choudhury (unregistered) on January 11th, 2007 @ 3:55 pm

    There are a few restaurants here and there – a couple in Pearl Continental hotel – which serve alcohol. Other than that there’s not much of a bar scene to speak of. Likewise there is a pretty active private party scene which favour trance and techno, but it’s all under the table.

  9. Hasan Mubarak (unregistered) on January 11th, 2007 @ 4:22 pm

    Basant, only if it happens, alone is going to bring a lot of dignitaries, diplomats and VIPs from Islamabad to Lahore…

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