Week 23 – Two Weddings in One Week

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Week 23, 19.9 – 25.9

Finally a great week!!! I was invited to two weddings parties. The first one was right on the first day of the week, on Saturday (19.9). So after school I took a little nap, then put my suit jacket on and went by metro near Karaj. There E. picked me up, the husband of A., at whom I stayed during my desert trip and with whom I met several times afterwards. I have to admit I was quite excited and a little shy, since I think it was only my second wedding in total and I already heard many people rhapsodising about Iranian wedding parties. On Saturday the sister of A. was getting married.
I arrived and the celebration room was parted: One part for the women where I could not enter and one part for the the men. Till dinner the men danced a little bit and I have to admit that the Persian are great dancers. Still I didn’t shy and just jumped about.
It’s tradition to throw money at the groom (or bride). Fortunately the paper money in Iran is worth not much. So 10,000 (25 Euro Cent), 20,000 and rarely 50,000 Rial-bills were thrown in the air (see video). In Germany or other western countries people either would get poor quickly or hurt themselves since they needed to throw with coins. Who catches the money is said to marry next, but mostly little children collected the bills.
After the delicious dinner, men and women started dancing together and the wedding cake was cut. But somehow it ended shortly after midnight, but it was still a very nice experience.
The next wedding party was supposed to happen on Tuesday. In the meantime a little exhibition due to Iran-Iraq war was built up at Vali-e Asr square where I use to get off the bus coming from school. You can see weapons like AKs, mortars or clothes of soldiers or posters showing “facts” and statistics.
The party on Tuesday (22.9) was also in Karaj. This time I didn’t go with E. and A. but with M., with whom I already visited the exhibition at the Museum for Contemporary Arts the week before. A work colleague got married and since it seems to be a costum in Iran not to go alone to a wedding – no matter if being male or female – she just asked me. This time the party was mixed from the beginning and everything seemed to be more formal and richer. E.g. mostly 50,000 Rials bills were thrown – I caught two. Before dinner some snacks were served and together with M.’s friends we went outside to – as Iranians always do – take photos of each other and smoke water pipe.
Like the first wedding the dinner was delicious and then we rocked the dance floor. This wedding party fortunately finished a bit later than the first one, so we could dance more. In the end every one wanted to take photos with the bride and groom. It took at least an hour since we got ours and bridal couple looked really exhausted.
The weekend was a little quieter. I met again with M. and Mahsa, who works for a travel agency and offered me to translate some texts from English into proper German (meanwhile I accepted so have my first little job here in Iran).
I didn’t get much sleep though, mostly did after school on the rooftop, but the week has just been awesome.

Week 12

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Days 83-86, 9.5-12.5, Saturday-Tuesday

It was the last week of the second course. Apart from running and meeting friends on Monday and Tuesday for eating, it was calm.

Days 87-89, 13.5-15.5, Wednesday-Friday

I wasn’t sure, but in the end I passed the course. After the exam I went with Yang, a friend of his from North Korea, Frisco and Zhihui for lunch.
In the evening I went to a little party in Iran for the first time. We were nine people, three Iranian girls. We played a social game, drank self-brewed beer and danced in the small apartment a bit in the end. But the evening was very nice and shortly before four I went to bed.
Though on Thursday I had a little head-ache all day because of the self-brewed beer, although I nearly drank anything. For breakfast I went to my friend again and with Zhihui to a coffee shop in the after-noon. She won’t be in Tehran for the next course, but is returning to China for that time.
On Friday (now) I won’t to much. But on Saturday (tomorrow) I’ll make a five day journey to the desert – naturally by hitchhiking and with my tent.