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Inspiring, Remarkable and Fantastic Events in Tehran

By Syma Sayyah, Tehran

Tehran is truly a very crazy city. I am not just talking about the mad driving and the unbelievable traffic at all times now, such that if there is not a traffic jam then one becomes surprised. It is hard to breathe most of the time due to the terrible pollution resulting from many different things, including the fact that there are so many cars on the road, and also the fact that there are so many run down and old cars which burn their fuel so inefficiently as well. But Tehran is crazy in a good sense too. One meets the most interesting people from so many different parts of the world, Iranians and foreigners alike, with such diverse and inspiring backgrounds that one does indeed feel genuinely enlightened.

A few days ago I attended a very inspiring and interesting speech on "Reading & Translating Virginia Woolf" at the British Council in Tehran. What was so significant about the event was that the talk was given by an Italian Professor (Dr. Nadia Fusini from the University of Rome) in English, at the British Council in Tehran, to a mainly Iranian audience. This is bizarre in the best sense of the word. It was simply great, and as his Excellency the Italian Ambassador stated in his short speech, this is how the Europe and the world is shaping nowadays and we were lucky to enjoy and learn.

The majority of the audience were ladies from very different backgrounds, some of whom at the end of the professor's speech asked the most profound questions. The session was brought to an end as it had started about 4.30 and many of the guests were fasting and the organizers had prepared a wonder Eftari[1] It was such a surprise to have Ash-e-Reshteh[2] and Halim[3] as well as sabzi-khordan[4] with local cheese and walnut as well as zolbia-bamiyeh[5] at the British Council!

My sincere thanks goes to both Ms. Ferraro from the Italian Embassy and Mr. Wilson the Director of British Council for such an inspiring, wonderful and enjoyable cultural program. One can only wish and hope such fabulous and enlightening events become a normal course of events in our crazy city. Jaye shoma khali khali (we missed you)!

1. Eftari: The food which is eaten at the end of fasting
2. Ash-e-Reshteh: A kind of heavy soup with different beans and greens as well as a special kind of Iranian spaghetti
3. Halim: A kind of porridge with or without meat
4. Sabzi-khordan: Different kinds of greens, including mint, basil, radishes, spring onion etc.
5. Zolbia-bamiyeh: Local sweet delicacy made from mainly yogurt and starch dip into thick syrup

... Payvand News - 11/22/04 ... --

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