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March 12, 2004

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After 17 years living in the Netherlands, I decided to finally pay a visit to Tehran where I come form. Although I had't lived there long, I knew exactly what the country was like because my wife visited Iran regularly and my inlaws and my grandmom would visited us from Iran quite frequently.

Not to my surprise my earlier impression of Iran was confirmed. Things haven't gotten any better since I left. In fact in majority of cases things have gotten worse than before. What a shame, what a waste! Don't be fooled by the new roads, highways and tall towers. When the infrastructure is not there, what good is it to have a new highway? Filthy streets everywhere. The house trash is just left at every house to be picked up the next day in a simple sack, that is immediatly torn up by either the cats or just as it's dumped there.

The city reminded me of Karachi. When I left Iran for Karachi 17 years ago, Karachi seemed so ugly to me, so filthy, so crowded, too many people just mingeling in the streets like ants. Motorcycles everywhere. I am affraid to say, that Tehran looked a lot like Karachi -- not as bad yet, but it's heading in that direction.

Mind you, we are talking about our capital! The best city of our country! Just imagine what has happened to other cities!

The only improvement I noticed was the presence of beautiful women in society. I am very proud of them. Every single one I met was more involved in every area than their male counterpart. Well done girls! If we are going to have a female president or queen, she'll have my vote, if we share the same political views.

Here are some pictures of the trip. In my short stay, I managed to ski once again and met my best friend Fereydoon whom I hadn't seen for so long. I hired a ski trainer for my son Khashayar. He was such a gentleman, a young man of 25. But unfortunately he was constantly thinking about leaving Iran for Germany. He used to be in Iran's national ski team.

Best Regards,

Homayun Mohasel-Zadeh

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