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Bon was overjoyed to be on the plane for only one reason, NO MORE HEAD COVER! Her belief that most Iranian women are not free, but merely second class citizens in the male dominated, religious culture of Iran proved mostly correct when perhaps 8o% of the women wore no scarf/head cover upon disembarking in Abu Dhabi. She was actually surprised the % was not higher, but education I think has more to do with it than religious factors. Iran does have a very high %age of women seeking advanced degrees though there are rumors that the government is going to limit the # of women able to seek higher education.
The fellow sitting next to me was from Afghanistan but had 'moved' to Australia 14 years ago. He said he went by boat which took 14 days, so I'm not sure of his status when he entered. At any rate he works in construction and was returning to Sidney and his wife/family after a year working in Abu Dhabi. We joked about how much nicer it is to take 14 hours now for him to reach Australia.
After waiting 5+ hours in the airport in Abu Dhabi we boarded our scheduled flight at 1:30am and were pleasantly surprised when they upgraded us to business class! We could get used to this very easily now that we have flown twice in such luxury, ha! No reason was given for the upgrade and I was honestly a bit afraid to ask for fear they might have made a mistake and take it away!
Watched Michael Moore's movie, 'Capitalism: A Love Story' Wiki Info Movie Capitalism: A Love Story
which was too long and lost my attention several times (I fell asleep, but then it was 2-4am). I was impressed by the presentation though, the comparison with how things were right after WW 1&2 dealings with unions and their eventual destruction via political collaboration with corporations. I also never realized the extent of President Carter's intuition into the direction the US was heading w.r.t. the brainwashing of Americans into believing in the corporate free market system! He was truely a great man and his defeat at the hands of Reagan marked the beginning of America's decline. I believe that had Iran dealt with Carter in the release of hostages back in '79 we would be looking at a totally different world today! Instead, deregulation and privatizing government, the debasing of politicians, the war on unions, the massive increase in military spending, and the massive shift of wealth from the middle class to the wealthy has characterized the direction of America for the past 30+ years. The Supreme Court's ruling on Citizen's United was just the last step in turning government over to the wealthy ruling elite. It was a foregone conclusion since Bush was appointed President in 2000 that the rule of law would be supplanted by the rule of greed and corporate power. We are living in the age of Animal Farm.
Enough soap box. Our metro transport to Ashram Ganj stop and eventually to checking in at Cottage Yes Please Hotel at 10 and nap time before heading to the New DEHLI train station where we purchased tickets for Goa day after tomorrow. Leave here 11 am on the 6th and arrive at 12:40 pm on the 7th. It is hot AND humid, 40°C 70% humid! Yikes, I'm melting or more like swimming!
Spent the morning getting package ready to ship a package back home. Spent the afternoon squabbling, shipping, and Skyping. I was able to upload more photos of Iran but only got through 3 days in 4 hours. Luckily internet is cheap here! Watched the 4tr finals of the French Open tennis, very exciting though I'm not familiar with any players other than Federer.