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Day 26: Lahore

Lahore, Pakistan 
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Prayers at the 330-year-old Badshahi Mosque, Lahore.
Michael Palin - HimalayaThis evening we meet for a meal at the house of the well-connected Yusuf Salahuddin, who, hearing of our curiosity about Shaan Shahid, the actor on all the posters, is to take us to see him filming at the studios on the Multan Road, heart of Lahore's film industry, or Lollywood as it's known.

Yusuf's house is a warren of tastefully decorated rooms and courtyards in the Old Town. On antique tables stand photos of himself with Imran Khan, Jimmy Goldsmith and others. In the courtyard we eat the most delicious mangoes I've ever tasted and talk about what we've seen in Pakistan. His views on the trigger-happy North-West Frontier are far from reverential.

'They'll shoot you if they feel like it. Any excuse. If they don't like the food, or the way you smile, or farting. Farting, that's very bad. Farting is a crime on the North-West Frontier. And the older you are when you fart the worse it is.'

He insists we come back here for the Basant festival in April. Everyone in Lahore flies their kites for a day.

'It must be a beautiful sight.'

'Beautiful?' He shakes his head in mock horror. 'It's war!'
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  • Series: Himalaya
  • Chapter: Day 26: Lahore
  • Country/sea: Pakistan
  • Place: Lahore
  • Book page no: 56

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  • Eating
  • Day 5 
  • Around the World in 80 Days
  • Day 3 
  • Full Circle
  • Day 6 
  • Pole to Pole