by Ben Hochberg, Laurence Lederer, and Josh Rosenbaum
Over Winter break, 3 members of section OH traveled to Pakistan to attend the wedding of fellow H-er Shadman Riaz and his lovely bride, Faiza Mujtaba. Ben Hochberg, Josh Rosenbaum, and Laurence Lederer arrived in Karachi at night fresh from traveling around various parts of Southeast Asia. The Pakistan leg of the trip got off to an inauspicious start when Josh was detained at the airport after customs officials stumbled upon two jugs of Vietnamese “snake wine” in his knapsack. [Please keep in mind that Pakistan is a strict Muslim country that prohibits the importation of alcohol.] As Pakistani officials huddled around the snake wine jugs-each of which contained a full-sized coiled and fermenting dead cobra-Josh calmly explained that such artifacts are actually cultural treasures of Vietnam. “No drink. Just decoration,” Josh elaborated. Nice try, and as Josh was being escorted to the contraband storage area, we all looked at each other and thought, “Now we’ll see what Josh really learned during first-year NEGN.”
Minutes later, Josh emerged unscathed and we were off on our Karachi adventure. Shadman picked us up at the airport and that night treated us to a terrific Pakistani meal. On the following day, Amer Ahmad (OK), also a guest at Shadman’s wedding, was kind enough to guide us around the city. Amer was a gracious host, taking us to visit a Sufi shrine, the Jinnah Mausoleum, and the beach for a brisk ride on a majestic camel. We also went to a local market where Laurence was able to break the local prayer-hat cartel and ended up securing a 40% discount off the suggested retail price, achieving a total savings of 52 cents. Further entertainment consisted of arranging for an old man to have a cobra and a mongoose “play together” for our viewing pleasure. (No Ben, I’m pretty sure their teeth had not been removed.) Suffice to say that it did not end well for this cobra.
That night we were delighted to attend a sumptuous wedding feast at Shadman’s family’s house. Shadman looked great in his traditional Maharajah wedding costume complete with the slippers with curled toes that we had previously thought only existed in Disney’s movie Aladdin. The OH-ers were able to attend the wedding in traditional Pakistani shalwar kameez that Shadman had tailored for us prior to our arrival. Laurence grew facial hair in the hope that this, combined with his shalwar kameez, would allow him to blend in with the people on his extended tour of northern Pakistan. Ben, however, was under no illusion that someone 6’6″ tall would be able to blend in with the local populace. Josh was on his best behavior having already survived his airport encounter with local law enforcement. Following the meal all the wedding guests gathered at the Sheraton Karachi where 800 of Shadman and Faiza’s friends and family members came to celebrate with them.
The following day Ben and Josh left for Thailand while Laurence traveled north to other parts of Pakistan. Meanwhile, Shadman and Faiza’s wedding celebration continued for three more Festive days.

February 12, 2001
Want to Sponsor The Harbus?

You can sponsor the Harbus website to reach the Harvard Community. Learn more.


We are addicted to WordPress development and provide Easy to using & Shine Looking themes selling on ThemeForest.

Tel : (000) 456-7890
Email :