Vank Armenian Cathedral, Isfahan..

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"It's a western tour operator's dream waiting to happen... save a few minor political changes" I remarked after relaying my expeditions within Iran and those with my sister during her visit. "There's just so much to see" I went on before listing other sites I've visited prior to my sister's arrival.

This conversation was to be set in motion one week before, April 1st, whilst in Isfahan for a new year escape. My sister's gigantic porky exceeded my effort: a text message to friends announcing my winning of the British Green Card Lottery. "Yes, I didn't pack my British passport" my sister repeated before continuing to tell me how our mother suggested that it would be unwise to bring her British passport with her to Iran. Yet only after I had indulged her knavery for some time, did it become clear that this was no April fooling. My mother - April's fool maybe - has a continued perspective of Iran being exactly the same as it was when she was here last, some 25 years ago, this occasion not being a pleasant one due to many reasons. Sadly I have heard too many conflicting stories from reputable sources to begin to afford an opinion on the events and I struggle to piece this history together. Although these mashed stories captivate me, I fail to see what inspired my mother to coerce my sister in not taking her best lifeline should the proverbial shit be distributed by rotating blades.

If I am not mistaken, of the four occasions that my sister would need to present a passport during her trip, her exit from Iran would need to be accompanied by her British passport, a VISA would be required should she wish to leave Iran on her Iranian one. With less than a week before she was to depart, we considered plans of getting it posted and managed to get close to doing this should it not have been for little matter of having to notify the British authorities of such action. Even if we had have done this in time, DHL were asking 75 new-English to get it there - a day too late!

Back in Tehran, a day later, I sat with my sister and a friend for lunch in an excessively decorated and fightingly expensive Chinese restaurant. As we toiled with chop sticks, I was interrupted with the familiar voice of my sister's flat-mate that blessed my mobile with this bad news. "My niece is visiting Tehran in two days, she lives in London..." announced the friend, interrupting my sister's sigh as she drew blank on the phone. And so, our-people were to meet their-people and between my sister's crossed-fingers and my "Inshallah"s we made for a nice mid-film moment.

48-hours before departure, after an illicit day of fun and games with friends in the countryside, we made our way back to Tehran to rendezvous with the savior of a niece. This young undergrad still radiated with Englishness prompting a barrage of irrelevant political small-talk that spilled from my mouth in excitement. "How is 'e-Tony e-Belair'?" I enquired mocking the Iranian accent. It had seemed I had missed a lover's tiff with Gordi - news that slipped by me from the daily scouting through British news sites on the filtered world wide web. After exchanging histories of our upbringings we took care of business, exchanged gifts and moved the subject appropriately onto travel. We talked of our recent travels, explaining the amusing story of being given free tickets to sites by female Basijis as an apology for bothering a foreigner (my sister) to correct her headscarf. This was met with huge surprise as with the other Iranians we've told. We relayed amusing stories of the children that followed and stared in silence, possibly intrigued, yet I imagine that they have little contact with foreigners, like most Iranians, and would naturally be curious. This lack of interaction is understandable yet I am learning that all sides have such a wealth of history and beauty to see, "there's just so much of it" I repeated in conclusion.


  • Hello dude!
    The time we heard about your lottary win, we were in Izeh everybody screamed cuz we thought you won the $$$ lottary!

    We were prepaired for a lottary party (!) to celebrate your winning in Isfahan!lol!

    According to the fact that the gals left me in Isfahan, one of the main victims of your April's Fool was me!

    The funny thing was the way you've chosen for April's Fool which none of us even suspected!

    Have a nice year anyway! With Actual $$$ lottary winning!


    P.S. Thanks for visiting my weblog. I think the problem of my commenting system is incompatiblity with MacOS. We may discuss about fixing my code laterz.

    By Anonymous Reza, at 3:17 PM  

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