hels on wheels

I woke on a thin mattress laid amongst the Persian rugs, only the little boy was sleeping in this room. The women and men would have slept in other rooms it seems.

At breakfast we ate a wafer-thin bread they called naan, with home made butter, cheese, and honey from their bees. Along with black tea everyone drank a mug of hot sheep’s milk (imagine how much I longed to mix the two!)

I wish I could’ve taken a photo to remember them all; the matriarch like me is 43, but a grandmother, and looks half my age. I hope I can retain her beautiful face in my memory.

From here I was climbing (*agaiiiin*) back up to 2000+ metres. The air quality was such that I couldn’t see beyond the next ridge, which is probably no bad thing given the ascent ahead.

The gradients in this region, accompanied by an aggressive headwind meant at times I came to an absolute standstill. I even had to push a short section when my legs refused further 12% pedalling.

At the top there were no photos of views to be had, just cloud all around until I descended most of the 1000m into Tabriz. Even then with next to no warning the highway appeared through the mist and suddenly I was transported from winding mountain road to intercity highway traffic.

Wildly chaotic, motorcycles were crammed into open trunks, long objects protruded sideways from rear windows ready to decapitate the unobservant bike tourer. If I escape Iran without serious road traffic incident it will be only through Devine intervention. (Just the following day - failing to look both ways - I would step directly into and collide with a motorcycle).

To my great relief then I arrived unscathed, (for now!) to the hostel. Here I will decompress,  sort SIM cards etc. and visit Tabriz’s UNESCO listed ancient and enormous bazaar.

If you enjoy my vlogs, blogs, and photogs please consider joining me on Patreon.