Friday, February 12, 2010

A Gift from JCB ~ Random Memory #5 ~ Iran

Ceramic flask from Iran.

Random Memory #5 ~ Iran

The movers came early in the summer to pack up our household to send to Iran. The agent said it could take a month or two, but in actual fact, it was four months before our shipment was delivered to our new home. We spent the rest of that summer living in a small Inn not far from our empty house. It was convenient because the children and I could go back and forth to our old home where we had many picnics in the yard while I did laundry in an effort to keep two little ones neat and tidy in our present vagabond lifestyle. Over the next few weeks we said our "goodbyes" to family and friends and made countless trips to doctors' offices for all the shots we needed...there were so many and scarcely time to fit in all the inoculations before our departure! The children's pediatrician was reluctant to give them a full dose of the cholera vaccine saying it would be far too much for their small bodies to safely absorb, so it was decided the other half should be administered a week after we arrived in Tehran.

Those first strange and confusing days will have to wait for other "Random Memories", but we did go to the Pasteur Institute for that second dose. Of course, it took forever to get there through Tehran's careening and snarling traffic. Just imagine bumper cars at a carnival! I remember the day so well...feeling hot, cranky, jet lagged, queasy from unfamiliar food and, more than anything else, worried about how to give the children a sense of security and stability while our world stood on its head. My little daughter and son had dark circles under their eyes and the change in food and water had affected them badly....and all throughout, they were so very very good!

I spoke no Farsi, so I slowly and clearly explained that my children required a half dose of cholera vaccine. Not a problem, they could do that, the shots were briskly administered and "Full Dose" recorded in their yellow health records. "Full Dose"! I was on the verge of a maternal meltdown, but the technician just shrugged saying "ok ok" and 'solved' the problem by crossing out "Full Dose" and substituting the word "half". I really don't know if that massive dose of vaccine made them any sicker, they suffered so much in those first few weeks. It would get better...we would all leave a piece of ourselves in Iran.


  1. A beautiful flask!
    I am so impressed by all of the places you have lived. Your random memories are so interesting to read, I can only imagine how they were to live them!

  2. Joan ~ Thank you so much for taking the time to read "the random memories.." ! I hope the little insights will be interesting and give a personal perspective on some of the events.


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