A painting of me


   15 March 2007, terribly early in the morning

Tuesday night I jumped over fire with Shima and her mom for Chaharshanbe Suri (چهارشنبه‌سوری). It is one of several events that lead up to Nurooz (نوروز), the Persian New Year. The event took place at Ashbridges Bay, by the Beaches. Four fires were set up in a row in the sand and people would take turns jumping over each of them. Little children, too small to jump by themselves, would be helped by their parents. It was all a bit disorganized, and the ground was a bit slippery, so I was expecting someone to fall into the fire at some point during the night; while we were there this didn’t happen, though there was one very close call. Going to these events is always an interesting experience — if only because at any given event there will be 40 or so Iranians who all know each other, and myself.



  1. Now you might be asking yourself why does “Red Wednesday” always fall on a Tuesday night? Persians are strange that way. You see, Tuesday nights are referred to “Wednesday evenings”. Likewise, Monday nights are referred to “Tuesday evenings” in Persian, and so on and so forth. I’m not sure why we do this though and to this day I refuse to make evening plans in Farsi with my parents. I usually just make the date in English, that way no one can show up on the wrong night.

  2. It’s like the way that Jews recognize days. They start at night fall. That’s why Shabbat starts on Friday night and ends at sunset Saturday. I think it’s an interesting way to figure the days, but somewhat irrational to me. It seems like the natural start to the day would be when people wake up. I am sure there’s some heavy traditional/religious origin for the practice. But I dunno it.

  3. The evening thing makes sense. Sort of like Christmas Eve(ning) or New Year’s Eve(ning).

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