A response to a letter sent by my Auntie in England


The family sports complex.

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I must say that I myself am suprised at your perspective of Iran. Firstly the practice of sacrificing a sheep is far from the norm and has come as very strange news to my Iranian friends here. These friends are very suprised by how religious and traditional my family are, so please don't view my family activity as normal. The sheep incident I found very respectful and a nice gesture... initially, I - like you - was mortified, but upon learning that this was to be a charitable gift for the local-poor people I was a little won over. Also, if we understand that this was a sheep that was intended for the slaughter - as is practiced around the world for as long as animals have been kept as livestock, so we shouldn't really get so attached. I found this moment an interesting one due to my being so close to the action, so to speak... I've always felt that people should bare witness to the process of food from sun to mouth so we can appreciate what we have. I hope you understand.

Regarding your comments about the sports complex - you must forgive me, I did have a little laugh. Especially as it was only the other day that I went out with a female friend to the biggest sports complex I've ever seen or even heard of (amusingly the name of which translates as "Revolution" in Farsi). I was driven there and taken around what should better be described as a sports town - it was that big! There was an 18-hole golf course, ten-pin bowling, plenty of tennis courts (indoor and outdoor), paint-ball field, swimming pools to name a few of the facilities. All of these are available to both men and women. In fact the mother of the girl I was with is an aerobics instructor! With regards to the swimming - naturally the men and women swim at either separate times or in separate places, as with the family sports complex.

Speaking of which, yes I am working there and for the moments am working on various design projects for tile patterns on the walls as well as researching various technologies to help with monitoring staff movements, customer volumes and methods to deal with money handling. I also help oversee construction work for the ever expanding complex. We currently have 6-pools, steam and dry saunas, Jacuzzis, restaurants, gymnasium, weights room, massage parlor and are expanding to have a wave-pool, two water-slides and a huge conference hall - naturally split in two for both men and women. At weekends we are currently having just short of 1000 visitors per day and this is just in Ramazan (half days essentially).

Iran, it seems, would be a huge suprise to you. This place, in a lot of cases, has a lot more to offer than England... shopping wise, Tehran has it all - or so I'm assured by my Uncle... "if it's available in the world then you can find it in Tehran". There are many affluent people and many fancy venues for them. I see the most impressive cars driven around by the most unimpressive drivers... this place is becoming increasingly materialistic and in some places it's overwhelmingly ugly. Sure, there are problems and odd laws but at the same time there is an odd amount of freedom. Iran is different, it is hard work but hard work in a different way to England.

 I hope this helps you understand things and that my blog will help you and other's not fall into the trap of leaping on what you hear about the place from various "respected" sources in the West.


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