Dispatches from a road trip through Afghanistan's forgotten north.
By Anna Badkhen
"Don't even dare travel on that road": In the first entry of a month-long travel diary, our correspondent ponders maps and routes in Kabul.
APRIL 12, 2010
Our diarist flies from Kabul to Mazar-e-Sharif, carrying photos of old, lost friends.
APRIL 13, 2010
On the third day of her journey, our correspondent visits a town buried in mud -- and trying to recover with no help from either the government or the Taliban.
APRIL 14, 2010
The government told them it was finally safe to come back -- even built them a clinic, a school, a playground. But what good's a playground when you have nothing to eat? Day 5 on our diarist's journey through Northern Afghanistan.
APRIL 16, 2010
Visiting the victims of Afghanistan's revenge rapes.
APRIL 17, 2010
Finding some solace with an unlikely old friend.
APRIL 18, 2010
Beginning the second week of her journey, our diarist encounters some shaky territory on the way to Kunduz.
APRIL 19, 2010
Our correspondent finds her friends, at last.
APRIL 21, 2010
Back in Kunduz, encounters with the unfortunate men whose job it is to keep northern Afghans safe and secure.
APRIL 22, 2010
They go take a hike -- and so does our diarist, spending a day of leisure on hills that were once bloody battlefields.
APRIL 23, 2010
With cops like these, who needs robbers? Our diarist meets one of Afghanistan's finest.
APRIL 24, 2010
Stopping through Mazar-e-Sharif, our correspondent witnesses one of the most disturbing side effects of the region's poverty: young boys with old faces.
APRIL 26, 2010
In a tiny room with no door, in a village with no roads, a drugged woman ties thousands of knots to weave a rug for others to walk on.
APRIL 27, 2010
No. But the question itself poses more questions than you might think.
APRIL 28, 2010
Refugees from a place that no longer exists, these Afghan settlers live in a slapped-together collection of tents on land that belongs to their ancestral enemy.
APRIL 29, 2010
Visiting the pediatrics center at an Afghan city hospital, in a country where only three out of four children live to be five.
APRIL 30, 2010
Our correspondent visits two Afghan villages hardened by centuries of hatred -- and separated by only a short stretch of road.
MAY 2, 2010
Nearing the end of the road, our diarist reflects on the unlikely sanctuary she found in a blighted land.
MAY 3, 2010
I returned to a place I saw liberated in 2001. Now the Taliban are back, and the only thing that has improved is the cell-phone reception.
MAY 4, 2010
Majid Saeedi/Getty Images