By Syma Sayyah, Tehran
Last Wednesday was a happy public holiday and since it was near school opening, Mehr 1 ( September 23rd), most people had taken Thursday off and gone mainly to Shomal to the Caspian. Tehran was once again quiet and peaceful and the air quality enormously improved, especially as autumn breeze have started to play their soft gentle tune.
My friends had made me promise to go hiking with them to Darakeh (one of the several spots in north of Tehran, where people go to hike). I used to go there at least once a week up to when I hurt my knee and had to stop. On many occasions, my heart would want to jump up there and feel the much fresher air up in the kouh (mountain). At the beginning, we used to go there on Thursdays and meet on a particular spot for brunch or breakfast. We would chat even to people we did not know, who soon became our friends from kouh. Even today, some of my dearest friends are those I met up on those narrow paths. Once this became a very popular thing to do and we had to spend so much time just to move up or down the mountain, we changed our arrangement and went there on Wednesday afternoons instead. We would go when we wanted, and as high up as we could manage; and there was a big local café there called haft howz (seven ponds), where we would all meet and have dinner or whatever. At times the group would become as large as 20 to 25 and we would stay until they closed the place.
When I was working, at times I would take some of our foreign guest
or visitors who came to
It was such a delight to see Shoukat and Abbass sitting next to each
other, on the other side of the stream. We saw them as we passed, when we
turned to main pathway in Darakeh. They were a middle age and traditional
couple. What pleased me so much was to note that they were enjoying being there
and seemed to enjoy each other's company. What a big difference and what a
pleasurable sight to see, as it is so rare these days, almost anywhere. Later on
when we stopped for lunch a little further up the path, they came along too and
that was when I went to them and learned that they were Kurds from the
South. They had lost their home and livelihood during the war and moved to
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