I am a native in this world And think in it as a native thinks

Friday, April 17, 2015

Welcome to Iran!

That's what we hear from Iranians all day. “Hello!” “Hello!” “Welcome to Iran!”

This picture was taken outside the Niavaran Palace, where the Shah lived with his family in the 1970's , until the revolutionaries took over and suggested, rather firmly, that he might prefer to live elsewhere. I got tired of looking at the furniture and Empress Farah Diba's gowns, and went to sit outside and wait for the rest of the group to finish.

There's a beautiful park, and I was alternating between bird watching and people watching when a young woman peeked her head around the corner, giggled, and then disappeared. She peeked again, disappeared again. Finally she approached and asked me shyly in Farsi if I spoke English. I said, Yes, that I was American. Her face lit up and she disappeared again, returning a minute later with the man in the picture.

He told me that he has been trying to learn English on his own, from American movies he's able to download, and he was excited to have a chance to speak English with an actual American. They brought the entire family over to meet me -- brother, sister, mother, aunt, wife, son -- and we all nodded and smiled and posed for pictures with each other. No one else spoke any English, but I got to use my half-dozen phrases in Farsi, which everyone enjoyed very much. The mother in particular, a tiny woman in head-to-toe black, acted as though meeting me was a great honor.

“We love Americans!” they told me, and it was obviously true.

1 comment:

Elisa said...

oh wow. gobsmacked. Have fun!

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