I first encountered members of the ‘Hazara’ this cultural group in southern Iran, then Balochistan (Pakistan). I was able to pick them by their more Asian (think western China) mostly wearing baggy, many-pleated pants. They are baggier than any clown pants you will ever see, and they ensure that you must pee sitting down to not wet your pants, but I figure most of these guys are not to be laughed at for fear of kidnap or being shot. They were the people I most associated with images of a hard, nomadic lifestyle in the middle of nowhere.
Of those that I spoke with, the ones on the Taftan-Quetta bus were most memorable. Three young guys were heading back into Pakistan from working in tile factories in Iran to renew their working permits. One (Mazoour Hussain) had spent a lot of time in Indonesia working, dancing and doing ecstacy. He tried to follow his brother’s successful flee to Australia. He got there, but his brother’s Afghani passport meant he got to stay while this guy’s association with Pakistan meant he got deported after a 4 week stay in a detention centre outside Sydney.
One of his other friends also had a plan to get into Australia. His wife was already there, so he just needed to wait the two years until he was eligible for the ‘buy one get on free’ (his terminology) that would get him in. I hope he does, and brings his fashion sense with him.