1/18/2008

From Karkheh to Rhein

It's Friday. My week was filled with new meetings and experiences of new and old feelings. I shared some of them with you. My relationship with my children is transforming again, putting us on a more adult track yet again. These transformations only mean that the list of topics we can easily and maturely discuss with one another grows. We are now past talking about the physical relationship of men and women and we are talking about "relationships," and how men and women might regard a relationship differently, with different expectations. To surprise you, I should say that I am not at all the only one who has opinions and experiences about this, and they are not the only ones who have questions and doubts about it! It is always a good day for me when I receive a beautiful sentiment in the form of an email from Iran first thing in the morning, and a couple of hours later an SMS from my older son, saying simply: "i love you mom."
I want to tell you a short story, a memory. I met Majid Entezami, the famous Iranian composer and his lovely wife, one of the few Harp players in Iran, in a family gathering several years ago. We talked about life and music and our children. He is truly a charming man who loves his family. I told him I knew him most prominently through his masterpiece film score, Az Kharkeh Ta Rhein. He said "You know, what happened to that score has been a source of bafflement for me." He explained that it is one of two pieces of music Iranian Radio and Television air during mourning times in Iran (the other is Hossein Alizadeh's symphony, Neynava), and this music has come to be known for sadness and reflection. I asked him if he minded. He said "No, I don't mind it, as I wrote it to be reflective and sad, but sometimes when I hear it unexpectedly played on the radio, I turn to my wife and ask her: 'It's not a national mourning day. Did someone die today?' Anyhow, it is a really beautiful piece of music and remembering how many times I heard it on the radio during Tasooa and Ashura, I felt nostalgic about it today.
We are at the beginning of a three-day weekend in the US. Monday is Dr. Martin Luther King's birthday, and I will write about him a little later this weekend. I wish you all a relaxing weekend, whether or not you are reflecting. Get together with those who matter to you, sit around a fire, talk, and embrace each other. You know, we must never underestimate the power of human touch. Holding hands, hugging, and touching our family and loved ones can have extremely powerful benefits for our souls. Iranians touch each other a lot more than Americans do. Believing in and observing "personal space" is the reason Americans refrain from getting too physically close to one another; this is intended to respect people's individuality, a value most prized in American culture. Iranians touch each other more, believing it conveys messages of closeness, brotherhood, and affection, a much more tribal approach to human interaction. I am very Iranian, very tribal, and when not in professional settings, I touch the people around me a lot! Have a good weekend y'all.

10 comments:

Helaleh said...

vow, Nazy joon this music brought a thousand vague memories in me. maybe an all nighter working on one of school deadlines, leaning on drawings, it's a nightly music, I feel like it's been composed at night.....
I'm glad you have this type of relationship with your boys, I think one of the key elements in shaping your relationship with your parents is how they communicate with you when it comes to friendship/relationship with the other sex. I don't know why. Society needs more mothers like you to teach boys about women! :) Apart from all these, miss you so much and let's do some cozy dinner where/whenever is convenient for you. :)

Shahrzad said...

The last paragraph is really impressive! Thanks for the music as always : )

Marzieh said...

Thank you Nazy jounam,
that was so touching as usual..I loved the music and the last paragragh especialy.
have a very good long weekend with your lovely family. :)

masoud said...

سلام نازی خانم
اعتقاد به فردیت و رعایت آن در فرهنگ امریکایی مانع از چه چیز می شود؟ نفهمیدم
بابا مگه این قند به دهنتون شیرین نیست؟
(جواب این آخری رو نمی خوام)

Nazy said...

Helaleh-ye Ziba, Salam!

Yes, that music is memorable, and you sound like you have your share of memories of Tehran to go with it!

Parenthood is a "one-day-at-a-time" business, Helaleh Jan. Some days I feel good and accomplished with it, and some days I feel completely sad and helpless with it. My older son now has a steady girlfriend in San Francisco, and our conversations together now have a whole new meaning. My younger son is struggling with life as he discovers himself and his world and that, too, has its own challenges, trials, and tribulations.

I can't wait to see you soon my lovely friend. Take care.

Nazy said...

Salam Shahrzad Jan:

Thank you my friend! I am glad you enjoyed the nostalgic music. I saw that it was raining in Dubai. I hope you are enjoying your summary winter in those parts. Be good azizam.

Nazy said...

Marzieh Joonam, Salam, Salam. Chetori? Thank you for your kind comment. I hope you, too, are enjoying your weeked. I am soooo glad we have a three-day weekend here! Be good azizam.

Nazy said...

Salam Masoud Jan:

Thank you for asking that question. Many people believe that being touched by another person is a violation of their personal space, where the other person is displaying emotions or a friendship which might not be appropriate to the relationship. Some people feel overwhelmed and condescended by spontaneous physical contact of another individual. They feel it violates their personal space (harim-e-shakhsi). That's what I meant. I hope my explanation is helpful.

Be happy Masoud-e Mehraban.

! said...

wooooooooooooooow
چه خبر بوده اینجا و من بی خبر بودم ...
بحث ها شیرین است !!
از بابت کرخه تا راین ممنونم این کار واقعا زیباست ..

Nazy said...

Salam Farshad Jan:

Yes, and we missed you, too! I hope you did well on your exam. It was so good to hear from you my friend. Be happy Farshad Jan.