Having partially frozen on the overnight trip into Karachi again I was pretty bushed, but after the usual runaround to bag a hotel room, we all trekked out together to the National Museum of Pakistan. This was just one indicator that upon partition, Karachi as the largest city had initially become the capital of Pakistan even though it was poorly placed at one extremity of the country. Hence the plan to build the new purpose designed city of Islamabad further north. Karachi was very busy as was to be expected, a swarming mass of traffic and pedestrians all fighting to negotiate one another. And it was certainly very warm now though in the midday sun.
A primitive black stone axe here was claimed to be the oldest tool found in all Asia at around 2 million years old, but I had to be sceptical as surely there were some very old finds in China? A section detailed the remains uncovered at ancient Mergarh, an archaeological site which was settled between 7000-2500BC. Built in a transitional zone (the Bolan Pass), it gave good access to year round pasture. Pottery began here circa 6000BC, then by 5000BC the potters wheel and metallurgy had evolved. Alongside industrial scale pottery they produced figurines and seals which indicate a fertility cult and an admin. system. It came to an end with the birth of nearby Nausharo, a site similar to Moenjodaro. From here pottery with very good distinctive decoration was recovered.