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Week 20 – Hi again, Tehran


“Week” 20, 24.8 – 4.9

After my trip in Caucasus (A Journey Through The Mountains) and two weeks in Germany, I’m in Tehran again and decided just to write down little everyday-life stories and anecdots; since honestly anything else is boring.
Monday evening (Aug, 24th) my direct flight to Tehran should depart. But there was a delay and even the departure airport was changed to Dresden. I got two vouchers to the amount of seven euros, meaning I was able to buy two 0.5 litre bottles of Cola and two pieces of chocolate, that I was given for free!
AT 9pm we were put in buses and driven to Dresden airport. The problem was the following: In Berlin-Schönefeld there’s a night fligh ban from 11pm on. The plane would have been able to land, but not to depart again. Since in Dresden the ban starts from midnight, we needed to go there – with a departure time of 3 minutes past midnight. The inflight service on this 4.5h flight was non-existent. The only thing that the airline (Germania) served as “meal” was one pathetic bread roll and juice. Fortunately I had some bread and grapes, but arriving 3.5h late in Tehran, I was quite hungry. So I went to my friend at whose place I had stored my other stuff. Since they don’t speak English, I got happy noticing that my Farsi wasn’t so bad after all.
On Friday (Aug 28th) I went to church at 6pm and afterwards socialised with the pastor’s couple and two other nice folks.
Since next weekend, nothing much was going on. I moved in the same apartment, which seemed last time having been cleaned by me in July. Now-a-days a nice Turkish and Pakistani guy are living there.
After three months I met Zhihui again and Tuesday evening (Sep 2nd) with Jooyang (Southkorea) and Mayuko (Japan). Before I went suited-up to the German-Iranian Chamber of Commerce to get a list with companies I’ll apply for a job soon.
The evening with Jooyang and Mayuko was nice, again very delicious and long. At 3.15am Mayuko and me went home and one hour later I arrived at the dorm. I’m really thankful that, in opposite to huge cities like Istanbul, public transport (night buses) is running in Tehran even at night every 15 to 20 minutes on the main avenues.
I was glad the main door of the dorm was open, since I only have a key for the apartment right now, which will be a trouble later… I could grant myself 3.5h before going to school. After school I got some sleep again, but at 6.30pm I had to be at Tajrish to go with Jooyang, Mayuko and her friend Yasuki at party of her friend.
It was funny, the apartment was equipped with black light and the atmosphere shindig.
On Thursday at 8pm I was invited to a traditional classical Iranian concert of Shahram Nazeri and his son Hafez Nazeri. The concert was great. They were accompanied by classical and Iranian stringed instruments as well as drums.
At 1am my friends gave me a lift to the dorm and when they were gone I stood in front of the door…that was closed. Nobody in the whole building seemed to be awake, although it was theoretically Saturday. So what next? Well after 20 minutes I went to Laleh Park. Due to other night walks I knew that people were just sleeping on benches or the ground. So I got myself a sheltered and dark place on the ground. I wasn’t discovered, but without blanket, just with my concert outfit, I couldn’t sleep. It was too chilly and me not tired enough.
At six I got up, shook earth from my clothes and went to the dorm, that was, of course, closed. So I walked around for one hour but when I came back the connection between door and house was literally still close. Because I didn’t want to sit on the stairs in front, I went to Laleh Park again. And what a surprise, I saw Iranians working out to to music. It came from a radio broadcast van of the radio station Radio Javan (Youth radio), although most participants seemed over 50. Though around there were many young people playing especially badminton. On lawn nearby, families ate breakfast – I was really surprised and very happy, that the dorm’s door had been closed this night.
After I watched for about 5 minutes, a journalist approached and a spontaneous interview with me, the Austrian, was broadcast. I even got a little present: a world receiver.
Shortly before 9am I returned, because that Friday was an English worship were a Dutch guy would go. Hence finally I got in the apartment!

Live interview with Radio Javan (original link Radio Javan – Interview)

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Week 11


Day 75, 2.5, Saturday

That day was a national holiday, so I needn’t go to school. But I was lazy. With Zhihui and her room-mate Feyza I went to a coffee shop.
In addition at the moment there is an huge amount of mosquitoes in Tehran. Although the air is very dry and there aren’t really any lentic waters, these spawns of hell reproduce very fast. In contrary to Iranian people – no offence – they are very agile, fast and seem to know seconds before that one is about to try to hit them; plus their thirst for blood cannot be allayed.
Either way I can’t even hide in my sleeping bag because they still find some gap in it. So on morning I woke up with one of my arms covered with bites. Fortunately they don’t itch.

Days 76-79, 3.5-5.5, Sunday-Tuesday

It was a normal school week again and the teacher told me several times how bad my Farsi skills for a German were. What she didn’t acknowledge, 90% of the other Germans come to Iran during their study so already had Farsi in Germany. Me instead, as well as Tobias, started from zero and are as bad as other nationals.
On Monday we went to the Iranian version of the French supermarket company Carrefour (Hyperstar). Yang told of it and we needed a couple of things. The supermarket was really like normal western ones – without the alcohol section of course and at a certain time I was asked to stop taking photos.

Days 80-82, 6.5-8.5, Wednesday-Friday

The weekend came near and initially I. wanted to come to Tehran for the book fair. But it didn’t happen. I had to flee out of Tehran and with the help of the satellite view of Google Maps I chose a valley in the north-east of Tehran. After class I went to Kalugan by metro, bus, on foot and 25km by hitchhiking. Having arrived in the village I hiked until dusk until I found a kind of appropriate place for my tent. But since I was in the mountains I couldn’t pitch it probably and was lucky that it didn’t rain that night. Apart from some different inconveniences I enjoyed being in a safety distance from the 14 million people hell.

On Thursday morning I packed everything again and went back to Tehran. A bit sad I spent the evening with Frisco, Yang and another student of Dehkhoda in a coffee shop. Later an Iranian girl and Zhihui joined.

On Friday on 10am I went to worship in the German Protestant Church of Tehran (). It was my first time and I liked it a lot. About 12 other people were there and after the worshop I stayed there for tea and talking until noon.
When I came back to Enghelab, Iranians just gathered at the entrance of the University of Tehran for Friday praying. The main street was closed and you could see some “Death to Israel/USA” again.