It’s All Maya!

If Life is an illusion, then why do I keep banging my head against the wall?

Si la Vie est une illusion, pourquoi je n'arrête pas de me taper la tête sur les murs?

It’s All Maya! header image 3

Where Is She?

June 29th, 2009 · 4 Comments

In 1979 I met a young Iranian girl, Sharareh, who had come to Paris to study French.  Her father brought her to France and then returned to Iran.  Sharareh was left alone for the first time in her life in a strange city and a strange country, but she was excited to be in Paris and we became fast friends. 

Where Is She?A lot of turmoil was taking place in Iran; first the Shah, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, was ousted and the Ayatollah Khomeini had became the new leader of the Islamic Republic.  Sharareh followed closely what was taking place in her homeland. She was afraid for her family and wanted to return home.  Her father contacted her and told her to stay in Paris.  She was better off, he said – so Sharareh remained.

1979 was not like 2009, there wasn’t the internet to keep her posted daily with what was going on with her family and friends.  There were few phone calls; international rates being so high.  The means of communication back then was taking pen to paper and waiting weeks, if not months, for a reply.

By 1980, I decided to go live in Madrid for a year, spending the summer on the Costa Brava and the Costa Dorada.  It was a great time of lying on the beaches in Spain by day and dancing the nights away until dawn at the clubs and discos.  When I returned to Paris in 1981, I went to see Sharareh.  The funny, bubbly girl that I had met in ’79, however, had become a sad, homesick girl who missed her parents and her siblings.

Protesting in Iran June 2009By 1982 Sharareh came to a decision.  It didn’t matter that Khomeini’s leadership brought about a Cultural Revolution and a new order of Islamic values.  It didn’t matter that the newly established Islamic Judiciary system was sentencing Iranians to death for opposing these radical changes.  It didn’t matter that her family said she was better off remaining in France – and so Sharareh returned home.

Maya Muses:  I never heard from her again; I’ve thought about her from time to time.  Now, since the uprising and the silent protests going on in Iran, she has been on my mind even more.  What was her life like when she returned home?  A beautiful young girl who went to parties in Paris, was she now covered from head to toe?  Surely, she was married and had children.  Was she now worried about her children protesting in the streets of Tehran?  Did she ever think about her life in Paris?  Did she ever miss the late night talks in the cafés with me and another friend of ours;  evenings where we philosophized about life, as only young people can.  Did she ever regret her decision to return home?  I hope not.

Photo Credits:  Flickr

Tags: Baby Boomer Babbles · In The News · Paris - Paname · Political Parlance

4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Deena // Jun 29, 2009 at 11:24 pm

    Wow, powerful story Lynn! I, too, hope she made the right decision and has no regrets about returning home.

  • 2 Cid // Jun 29, 2009 at 11:43 pm

    Back in the early ’70s there were a lot of Iranian students in our universities. I and several friends, had a number of classmates and close friends, but once they went back home to Iran, we never heard from them again.

  • 3 Lynn // Jun 30, 2009 at 1:30 am

    My feelings exactly, Deena. When I make decisions in life, it’s important that I have no regrets. I hope she can say that she didn’t either.

  • 4 Lynn // Jun 30, 2009 at 1:33 am

    Cid, I wonder if people did write and the letters going out to the Western world at that time were intercepted?

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