« « An American In Iran Says Hello
Landed In Shiraz » »

 

We barely got in 3 hours of sleep after our early morning arrival from Vienna before we were on the streets of Tehran. If I didn’t know any better, Tehran is like any normal city you’d find in the Middle East (Cairo, Amman…) but a lot more pleasant. Despite some heavy traffic and a crammed metro system, the entire atmosphere is  subdued, not hectic; everyone seems to be on a slower pace than its sister cities of the region. Although in all fairness, the perfect T-shirt friendly weather helps.

 

CDS_9048

 

The obvious is obvious: Iranians are friendly;  doesn’t matter what country you’re from. They’ll treat you with respect as long as you do the same. I just wish we had more time to talk to them as we zipped through the National Museum (nothing too special except to learn about the history of the Persian civilization), breezed through the Tehran bazaar, and hopped on the underground Metro back to our hotel.

 

The Tehran National Museum just got served.

Our way of thanking the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for letting us into Iran

CDS_9030

Sigh…they always make it the woman’s fault

The most interesting thing about Tehran was how…normal…it was

 

Not surprisingly the highlight of our day was getting lost in the bazaar, which out of all the ones I’ve been to (even the ones in Fes or Marrakech) has been one of the most beautiful I’ve explored.  It’s busy but calm, moving at its own pace that doesn’t seem to mind the presence of foreigners. Unlike in Morocco, where tourism has developed to such a degree that every minute is a chance at solicitation and harassment, Iranians give you the space and respect for you to move at your own pace and explore at your will. If anything, the irony is that I feel I have more “freedom” of movement here in Iran than I did in places like Egypt or Morocco.

 

Tehran Bazaar

A few more pictures of us leaving the bazaar and strolling through the streets:

CDS_9098

Why so serious?

and us riding the Metro…

The Iranian Single-Ride "Metrocard"

CDS_9094

Map of the Tehran Metro

It gets a bit crowded

And us having dinner at this really pretty place (but they wouldn’t tell us where):

CDS_9099

Getting in cabs at dusk. I love this time of day.

 

Perhaps most local Iranians would disagree with me when I say this, but I found Tehran to be quite pleasant.

– At time of posting in Tehran-Mehrabad, it was 62.6 °F
Humidity: 55% | Wind Speed: 6km/hr | Cloud Cover: few clouds