This blog about my experiences as the only German in Pakistan was originally going to be called just that. When I was invited by my friend to visit her home country I did not expect to be first person from Eichwalde to ever pick a kinoo in the orchard near Okara. Only when checking in for my connecting flight in Ryadh was I told that I would be the first German ever to go to Karachi. This situation resulted in a lot of advantages but also disadvantages and sometimes comical experiences which I want to retell on these pages. So, it would have obviously been the truest name for the blog. However, a media production adviser advised me to chose a less controversial name as times are controversial enough already.
I opted for ice-cream in Pakistan as there is hardly a person on this planet of earth who doesn’t love ice-cream. All other things I could think of are only liked by some people. Personally, I would die for sausages, Döner, gooseberries and fresh naan and chicken achaar. But then I know that not everybody would agree on these delicacies. Likewise, I know a young lady in Karachi, who could spend her whole day eating olives, but then there are also a lot of people who detest them. And there are minority groups who have a passion for very different things that hardly anyone would share. Some like bone marrow, some like explosives, some like brawn in aspic jelly and other individuals go for hill running and SUP yoga. While everyone should have the freedom to follow their eccentric passions and likes during their free time in their own home, we should also agree on one thing that brings us all together. It was long before Tom and Jerry decided on a peaceful partnership, changed their name to Ben & Jerry’s and began promoting peace through ice-cream that I believed giving every person fair access to ice-cream would finally settle all our conflicts.
When I was little ice-cream was available aplenty for the child friendly price of sixty East German pennies. These were the days when on a hot summer’s day you’d jump on your bike and cycle down to the ice-cream parlour and put your head through the shop window from which would always waft the smell of chilled freshly beaten cream and fruits. The reason that Germany became the place in Europe where you’d get the best ice-cream were the Italian immigrants who came in the 60s and began opening ice-cream parlours. Of course they didn’t come to East Germany. It was a great country, with full employment and people bursting with creativity. Yet, who wants to live behind a wall. Since time has passed and almost every tourist all over the world has a piece of it at home, people have completely forgotten how disliked the Berlin wall once was. It was only in recent years that Australian and Mexican tourists have made the construction popular. The Italian immigrants never had a desire to live behind a wall and make ice-cream for people who look black and white in their photographs. However, in East Germany we had this great system by which people who had relatives in West Germany got little parcels sent from there because their government kept telling them that we were starving here. So, someone must have sent Italian ice-cream at some point and thus it soon spread all over East Germany.