“About twenty kilometers north of Dawson’s position, Winger and Romero were driving south in a newly acquired jingle truck, a large farm truck extensively “pimped out” with gaudy paint jobs and ostentatious accoutrements draped over every visible surface. Jingle trucks originated in Pakistan, but rapidly became popular across many Middle Eastern countries in the 1990s. They became known as jingle trucks because of the jingling sound from the many chains typically hanging from their bumpers. It was not a vehicle that either Winger or Romero would have chosen, but when it became clear the transporter escorting Fengche’s group had a Mercedes waiting for them, it was the expeditious choice. It was nearby, easily hot-wired, and likely to attract little attention in that part of the country. Nursing it along the road at more than forty kph was a struggle because it was badly out of alignment and wobbled dangerously when faster speeds were attempted.”
This is a photo I took of a Jingle truck in Afghanistan in 2011. Flamboyant and ubiquitous, these trucks are the workhorses of the self-employed, and they roam the roads of the Middle East continually.