I miss the loud streets, the quiet alleys, the crooked side walks. I miss the old buildings with history. I miss the streams of water running through the streets of town, carrying with them every piece of trash imaginable. I miss the little stores, the cranky clerks, the persuasive shoppers. I miss the different smells, the yummy tastes, the lovely chaos. I miss the orange taxis, the beat up buses, the cars that would never pass a smog test. I miss the barbecued corn dipped in salt water that one can buy on the side of the road from a young boy who will guarantee it's sanitariness. I miss the taste of the fresh pistachios, fresh nuts and dried fruit. I miss sitting on a rug covered bed eating abgoosht and smoking ghalion under the stars, while listening to traditional music. I miss walking through the parks, seeing children play on the swings, witnessing a randez vous of a girl and a boy and watching family pick nicks. I miss the lively bazars and the sound of the azan. I miss the juice stands, the ice cream shops and the violinist playing beautiful music for lunch money. I miss the trendy coffee shops, the lit up malls, the restaurants. I miss the parties that lasted until 3:00 a.m. and the unguarded and pure fun.
I miss my house on the fourth floor, my room with pink walls and the roof top where I went for solitude. I miss the sound of Masht Hassan's nightly whistle, the old "night watch" who walked around the streets holding his stick and blowing his whistle letting the neighborhood know that they are safe for he is out there (with his stick)! I miss Alavi, the little convenient store by our house with the grumpy and mean owner (Mr. Alavi) who sold spoiled milk.
I miss my kind aunts, their homes, their cooking and their love. I miss my sweet uncles, my polite cousins and my childhood friends who are all mothers now.
I miss the enormous trees that casted comforting shadows on the hot streets, the colorful flowers, the dirt. I miss playing lei lei, bala bolandi, gorgam be havai with the neighbor's kids in our safe neighborhoods. I miss the torching sun of the hot summers, the chilly snowy winters and the fresh rain.
I miss the 4 hour car ride up north. I miss the views, the greenery, the ladies with skins turned dark from a lifetime of working under the sun, selling dough on the side of the road. I miss the familiar breakfast joints by the road that sold eggs (sunny side up) with a side of cream and warm fresh bread. I miss the magnificent sea, the quiet beach, the sand. I miss the great rice fields that filled the air with their wonderful scent. I miss the vacation bike rides and lying under the sun. I miss eating watermelon by the stream after it had been floating in the cool water for hours.
I miss the little authentic tea glasses filled with dark dark tea. I miss the snow covered mountain, the hiking, the fortune teller with the bird.
I miss Norouz. The gold fish sold on the side walks and the music blaring every where. I miss seeing the colorful rugs hanging from each home's balcony rails waiting to be dusted. I miss the family visits, the food, the sweets. I miss coloring eggs red, blue, green and yellow for the haftseen and of course receiving gifts.
I miss the traditions, the rich culture, the humble people, the long history, the pride that never shatters, the warmth, the love. I miss my county. My country that is still holding on strong in spite of all the dark days, in spite of our abandonment. I miss what I used to call home.