A touch of the homesickness

So my birthday’s on Wednesday and Norooz is right after that and it’s my first time ever to spend either of those away from home, much less both of them. Plus there are almost no Iranians here, and no Iranian restaurants either. The Iranians who do live here are all on vacation in Iran right now. Today I called the Iranian embassy to see if there were any cultural activities going on for Norooz, and this nice woman answered and asked me what I was doing here and invited me to come into the embassy any time I wanted and was really sweet. But apparently there’s nothing going on for Norooz. I half-considered flying to Dubai for the weekend and crashing all the Norooz parties there but who has the time/money? If I liked my homestay family or felt like they cared I would be more than happy to share Norooz with them but they barely participate in Arab culture, much less have any interest in learning about any one else’s culture.

I guess that’s harsh but I’m getting really tired of them. The brother and sister are so mean, and the sister only talks to me when she wants to write something in English and needs me to correct it for her. And you know my problems with the brother. The parents are fine but the only things the family does together is fight and watch television. AWESOME. It’s like witnessing the dysfunctional parent-child relationship I never had. It’s also completely the opposite of what I asked for: a family interested in culture and the arts and politics and who would take me out to see things and engage me. I know there are families like that, some of my friends are staying with them. Mine treats me like I’m renting a room in their house, which I guess is essentially how they see this whole homestay situation.

ANYWAY. Enough of the self-pity. I have many, many vocabulary words to memorize and a grapefruit bigger than my head to eat.

–June

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