A month into Iran

, , No Comments
One month ago, on the dark, cold, wintry morning of 8th November, I reached Tehran. It's been three weeks since I returned to India, but even today, when I'm in the middle of something else, my mind flashes images of my trip to Iran.

Like the green cotton stole I used as a hijab to cover my head.

Those few days after returning to India when my hand would automatically reach the back of my head to pull my sliding hijab back up.

Walking around the bus stop in Yazd, wondering what to eat or drink: more sweet cake, more sweet tea, more sweet biscuits? More mandarin oranges, or chips?

The dread with which I'd wake up in the middle of the night to pee - because the toilets were almost always located outside the room, in the courtyard, and peeing meant walking in the freezing weather.

The smell of gas when the room heater was on. Room heaters were heated using LPG or CNG, I don't know which.

The many plates of brinjal-tomato gravy that I ate. The saffron rice with the packet of butter on it. The huge, cold, hard-to-tear naan that everyone eating together shared.

The way it feels natural to me to wrap my head with a scarf even in New Delhi to protect it against the cold.

The taste of black tea, which transports back to the many living rooms we were heartily welcomed into for many cups of chai.

How I didn't feel like I was missing anything being out of Facebook, Twitter and YouTube for 13 days.

Resisting the impulse to shake the hand of Iranian men when introduced to; most don't do it, some do it when there are no other women around them.

The random German-Iranian stranger to talk with whom I was trying to get my rusty German back into use.

More on Iran soon, I hope, but this was a taste of what the 12 days felt like.