The next day things moved faster as they met an architect, who designed the school with Greg's specifications and gave a list of materials needed. Then they went shopping. More tea was drunk and Greg got a feel of doing business in Pakistan. Finally with some hard bargaining they bought, lumbar, corrugated tin roofing, nails, hammers, saws and so on.
The following morning they loaded the truck with all the goods they had purchased and Greg was left with only three thousand dollars for labor and other expenses. It was evening by the time the truck was ready to move. Mortenson took leave of Abdul and climbed on to the top of the truck. As the truck moved Abdul offered prayers for its safe journey. Soon they were on Karakorum Friendship Highway, the worlds highest international highway, built at a great cost of life for both Pakistan and China, to cement a strategic alliance against India.
There was some tension as the truck was held up at a bridge as the locals protested on some grievance against a lowland contractor, who had cheated them. Kohistan region, the wildest part of the North West Frontier Province was infamous for banditry and had never been nominally under control of Islamabad.
Thanks to thousands of Pakistani soldiers, the road to Skardu was improved... to allow trucks to pass on their way to support their war effort against India. But rockfall and avalanche, ...meant that dozens of vehicles plummeted off road each year. They eventually arrived at the outskirts of Skardu, their destination.