Bowling for Peace: Why an Afghan Woman Risked Her Life to Bring Bowling to Afghanistan


Through it all, she sometimes works 20 hour days, has faced taunts from conservative Afghans who say a woman has no place running a business like this, and has fought off officials from the Olympic committee who've threatened to close down her business unless she pays a hefty "registration" fee -- what many consider a bribe.

Despite the struggles, she's persevered. From humble beginnings -- the bowling alley used to be a vacant parking lot -- the place is now packed on Thursday and Friday nights, and Sunday afternoons, when -- in a nod to Islamic culture that encourages segregation -- the lanes are reserved for women and children.

Rahmani, herself a devout Muslim who wears a hijab, also doesn't allow smoking on the premises, and refuses to admit anyone who appears drunk.

For Hadi Safdari, it's proof that bowling can exist, perhaps even flourish, in a country as conservative as Afghanistan.

"Who knows," he jokes. "Maybe one day, the people who are fighting outside will put down their guns, and come in here instead."

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