Made my soul fly

Khaton Khanom writes to Marina Nemat, author of  Prisoner of Tehran

My dear Marina,

I read your book while traveling to Tehran. It was a long, tiring trip, but I used every minute of it to read the book. I have to admit, It had been such a long time since a book moved me like that and made my soul fly.

In Tehran, everything I saw, everywhere I went, I found something that took me into your world and your book.
I visited your old neighborhood, but it looks very different than what you had described so beautifully.

When I passed by Evin, I said your favorite prayer, took a minute of silence in your honor and memory of your innocent friends and all the ones that are still suffering behind those ugly, tall walls.

When driving on the road, right after Pol-e-Modiriyat, there is a big sign that points to Evin’s visitor parking, where your family had picked you up. I made the car stop so I can take a closer look. Imagining you and others who took the same road to be reunited with their families, what it must feel like, … oh!… it all makes me angry, sad and helpless! (By the way, they have taken down the whole Shahre Bazi!)

I saw the female Islamic police (peoplet call them Faaty Commando) and have so much hate for them that I didn’t even want to pass by them. I have to admit, they only have selected the ugliest women I have ever seen to do this nasty job. The interesting part is that their working hours are only 5:00-10:00 P.M and you can spot them by nice shopping centers, nearby university or book stores; mainly where young people gather.

Dear Marina,

I don’t know after all you went through, if you still miss it sometimes or not, but I will tell you that the city looks different now. All those beautiful old houses are gone and instead tall, modern looking buildings are heading toward the gray sky of Tehran. People look sad, suspicious, mad, worry and depressed. You rarely see a smiley face! Worst part is that they take their frustration on each other!

I have to say, somethings are still the same. You can smell the Turkish coffee and incredible pastries from around Bahar and Villa street. You can still get hungry while passing by an old fashion sangaky and you can still spot the toothless man selling heavenly fruits off of his little wagon by Tajrish Square !

I guess, Tehran with all it’s beauty and ugliness will still be the place most of us want to dream of at night!
Hope that someday, our magnificent, on of the kind home is free from the hands of these occupiers!
So help us God, till that day!

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