We were standing next to an outdoor area where ladies come every afternoon and drop in to read in unison from the Koran. After reading out loud a few pages, they move on and other women come and take their places on the raised podium. While there I spotted another twenty something dressed in head to toe chador and marveled at the contrasting styles of these two girls. This girl was going around serving tea to the readers who had had just completed chanting. With the help of my translator/guide/friend, Farzaneh, I was able to bring these two girls, who seemed to come from different stratospheres, together for a bit of dialogue.
I really couldn't properly pronounce the name of the red haired girl so called her Punky which made her laugh. The conservatively dressed girl, Zahra, seemed amused by it all and eagerly joined the conversation. Punky said her dress, lip piercing and red hair caused havoc in her home and her father refused to be seen in public with her. Zahra said she, too, never goes out with her father as it isn't something that someone her age does. They nodded at one another and had a private laugh when I said it wasn't cool to be seen with your parents. Their English was minimal, but Farzaneh translated and said they fully understood what I meant. When I asked them if they would like to change places with one another for a few days they both burst out laughing, and in unison replied that they could only dream about those things. They both said that they loved the garden, poetry and felt comfortable with the life they have created for themselves.