I spent my last afternoon in Kabul with the girls. Marjan covered our palms and forearms in drizzles of henna paste. After, we sat out in the yard, arms outstretched, palms up, waiting for the paste to dry. A posture of pleasant helplessness. More girls gathered to use the rest of the tube, sketching intricate designs in ballpoint pen before carefully squeezing out the henna paste. Three girls took my right hand in theirs like a school of little fish, flicking and scraping off ridges of dried henna with their fingernails. Marjan led me over to the pump, scrubbing at my hands and arms to reveal sharp, startling deep orange designs. I gave the girls my camera, and it was they who took most of these pictures of a perfect afternoon.
Total cost, 10 Afs or about twenty cents.
- Kabul, 14 August 201