Persepolis and the Nomads
Trip Start May 31, 2007
107Trip End May 20, 2008
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We had lunch at this faux grotto restaurant decorated like a cave with water and animals all around. Couldn't quite figure out what 'environment' was trying to be created here but it was amusing anyway and cooler
We returned to town and a few of us decided to visit the tomb of the famous poet, Hafez. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hafez We arrived and there were crowds of people all around including a group of students taking graduation photos. As the sun set and I was enjoying the changes in the light, a young man started talking with us. He seemed quite passionate and we learned that he and a group of other young men were on a Shiite pilgrimage from Pakistan. He discovered that I was American and he began questioning me quite aggressively about U.S. foreign policy and about my personal opinions. I told him that I did not agree with all of U.S. foreign policy and thought that our violence in Iraq was wrong but that I also believed that the opposition violence was just as wrong...that violence towards others was wrong...period. Our conversation paused momentarily and then he decided that he wanted a picture with me...ironic after being so vehemently against the U.S. A love - hate relationship I suppose or fascination with his perceived 'enemy'? This would be the only time that I encountered visible aggression towards me on my trip to Iran and interestingly, it was from a citizen of one of our allies...
The next morning we packed up and left for our stay with a nomad family in the mountains outside of Shiraz
That evening we all sat around in the communal tent and sang songs, watching pretty racy music videos (facilitated by the eldest son of the nomad family we were staying with). He was quite a modern young man, quite a romantic. It didn't seem like he was destined to stay in a nomadic life. Dinner was great and served on a plastic table cloth placed on top of the multiple carpets lining the floor of our tent. Chai followed and then hubbly bubbly with raw strong tobacco. Only Sal tried it from our group I think but the nomads smoked quite a bit. Saraya, the matriarch of the family was busy all evening with the details of dinner. Later on as we all were starting to wind down a bit, she plopped herself down having just finished here duties and was ready to have some fun! We revived a bit and the night continued bu soon we all piled into our sleeping bags, tore our headscarfs off while in the privacy of the tent and slept soundly...except for the chorus of dogs, goats and other animals that would erupt at different times of the night!