Any country that is different from ours or the one we are used to living in seems a bit unknown and mysterious.  We know little facts here and there about other countries, usually brought to light by situations, issues or occurrences that may have taken place involving that country.  What we don’t know about other countries necessarily is the little things that make it unique and that are enjoyed by those that live within it’s boundaries.

Take the country of Afghanistan for example, we know a little about this country from what we have seen in the news, and from the negative that has come from this country.  We don’t know however about the things that make this country home to those born and raised there.  I have complied six interesting facts about this desert oasis.

  • Poetry is a big part of the Afghan culture.  Dating back 1,000 years they have told their stories through poetry.  In the western cities of Afghanistan, like that of Herat, Thursdays are considered poetry nights.  Men, Women and children come together to share ancient and modern poetry, eat pastries and drink sweet tea throughout the night .
  • Opium is the largest and fastest growing produce in all the country.  In fact 80-90% of the heroin found in Europe comes from the Opium that is grown in Afghanistan.
  • The National sport of Afghanistan is known as Buzkashi, or goat throwing.  Deemed the wildest game in the world because of its crazy dynamic, players ride on horseback and compete against one another to catch a goat’s body, ride ahead of the others and drop the goat in a marked circle to find victory.
  • Women and Men will never shake hands or speak directly to one another especially in public places.  Women are also not allowed to wear skirts or sleeveless tops of any kind.
  • Afghanistan is full of natural resources such as Uranium coal, talc, sulphur lead and salt to name a few.  Also in the Northeast you can find semi-precious and precious stones.  In the North you can find Petroleum and natural gas resources.  In the Southeast Silver, Zinc, Copper and Iron ore can be found.
  • Kandahar was the very first capital city of Afghanistan.  It later was replaced by Kabul which is now currently the Capital.

It is always interesting to learn new facts about foreign places and un-explored soil.  Even if you never make it to a particular country, it is always good to educate ourselves on some of the basic cultural values and beliefs that different countries practice. With today’s ever growing diversity in society it is better to embrace the differences that we may share rather than focus on the them and letting them divide us!