Iranian New Year

This week (yes it was a few weeks ago) was a complete mixed bag of old and new, exotic and entertaining, after a great week down in Devon spending time with my baby nephew, and walking on the moors and along the coast.

We started off our activities with the start of the Iranian New Year. I went alone (Claire was at work) Persian New Yearto the British Museum close by, where there were loads of stuff going on throughout the day. With singing and dancing in the main hall, talks and films, and more family activities than a primary school child could imagine. There was a great feel to the place, lots of energy, a great sense of pride and a very specific cultural feeling.

Obviously there were a large number of people who I assume were Iranians/Persians there, enjoying the activities giving a special sense of community. Based on the comments written next to a large visual display of Iranian life, and the almost complete lack of head scarves, this felt like a diasporic community with a deep love and longing for their homeland, but with a different outlook on life compared with the Islamic Republic currently in power. I assume that is why these presumably well educated and independent minded people are here and still longing for home. Having never been forced from home, or been away for more than 2 months, it is impossible I think to appreciate what these people may feel. Something well worth reminding those that attack so savagely those that have come here for whatever reason.

Challenge 907, 150/1000 complete

In the evening we continued the Persian theme, where Claire and I met up and went to a  restaurant near Marylebone, where I had some delicious fish with rice – traditional for their New Year. On the way home, we basically stumbled on one of the cocktail bars we needed to attend on Charlotte Street. Shochu Lounge really is something, and probably the most interesting and enigmatic of all the cocktail bars we have been to so far. We only had one cocktail (though would have happily had many), but would love to go back for food to, which looked quite amazing. I do not want to give too much away here – suffice to say this place is well worth a peek in, you won’t be disappointed.

Challenge 319, 151/1000 complete

Generally we have not done many of our challenges with friends, Mucky Pupso with my mate Keith up in London this week, I decided to treat to him to some quality entertainment (not that I knew it would be so good at the time), instead of the usual never-ending arguments that we engage in. So we headed over to Angel and the Fat Tuesday Comedy Night. This is not your run of the mill, commercial, money grabbing comedy night. Based in a small room, holding only about 50 people above the Compass pub, this weekly night was quite brilliant. 5 excellent acts, including to our surprise Alan Carr trying out some new material. Great as he was, he was eclipsed by the last act,  who was a side splitting funny New Zealander – who hit the nail of the head with his jokes about the difficulties foreigners have in London, and how Londoners treat their misfortunes. We are going again in June :). We ended the night by heading over to the Mucky Pup – and success, our first pub where we actually got the jukebox to work – hurray, hurray. Cool jukebox, good bear, worth a visit if you are in the area.

Challenge 9 and 250, 153/1000 complete

Finally we ended the week, the way we started, on the theme of Persia. We went off to the ICA to watch “No One Knows About Persian Cats” as part of the Human Rights Watch International Film Festival. Quality film, with sadly an obvious ending, that weirdly the audience found shocking – oh well. Still it was a great film, not because of its plot, but because it illustrated through music and friendship the diversity and pride for their nation in the Iranians portrayed. Not a blockbuster, but a thousand times more thought provoking and surely that is what we want – no?

Challenge 208, 154/1000 complete


~ by lethaniol on 20/05/2010.

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