Rooftops of Tehran

Rooftops of Tehran
by Brian Appleton

I can't put it down...I mean starting just with the title, we all know about the rooftops of Tehran, how we slept on them under the summer stars, how boys and girls spied on eachother from up roof had a pine tree leaning against it and every afternoon at about 4:30pm, a flock of Indian Ring Neck Parrots would descend on the branches to pick the pine nuts out of the cones with lots of raucous noise...I would spy on a girl named Faranak on her roof, the summer of 1966 and she would spy on me especially when I was dancing to the Beetles by myself in my best friend's yard on Kuche Goharshad, knowing she was watching up there. Or how about finding a friend with a roof to watch the outdoor movie from when you were a kid and couldn't afford the ticket like my friends in Esfahan and Cinema Maiyak.

And of course in 1979 and these days, roofs are the place to go and shout protest in the night "Down with the dictator...and God is Great" and risk being shot at up there. So much of life unfolds on the roof... a microcosm on the roof...

Page 20 

Pasha's father:

" 'It's time for the parents in this country to learn that the souls of their children are more important than tradition,' he says. 'You young people need to assume responsibility for your own futures,' he tells me. 'If someone is old enough to be married off, then they're sure as hell old enough to decide who they should marry.' My mom nods in agreement." 

I am willing to bet that every single one of you knows of an unfortunate girl or boy in Iran married off in their teens by arranged marriage who are now either divorced or headed that way... it figures largely in so much Iranian contemporary writing too.

This book is amazing! Read it! Bravo Mahbod!


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