What a long day!

Trip Start Apr 11, 2006
Trip End Sep 14, 2006

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Flag of Iran  ,
Sunday, April 16, 2006

It was a very intense and tiring day the crossing of Azeri-Iranian border. And the sad thing is not at all because of the Iranians: leaving Azerbaijan was an absolute nightmare!! I had to queue for over 1 hour carrying my heavy backpack, had to pay bribery and talk to 3 different officials - all this just to leave f****** Azerbaijan!
The initial plan was to stay much longer in Azerbaijan, but it proved to be such a dodgy country, full of ignorant nouveau riche people, so I decided to leave early. It is also very expensive!
There was a cool thing about crossing the border though. There is a small river separating the two countries and you have to cross a bridge to get to the other side. The bridge is decorated halfway with flags of Azerbaijan and the other half with Iranian flags. There is heavy traffic of old cargo trucks and many soldiers around. I felt as if in a war movie, but without the bombs. Very cool!!!
Despite the war scene environment, I felt safe and glad to leave Azerbaijan. I have to admit that being Brazilian is helping me a lot on my trip. Whenever I say where I am from everyone smiles and pronounces the name of Ronaldo!!! Everyone is happy to help and glad to see a Brazilian. I feel very privileged!!

The `check in` to Iran took literally 5 minutes. They were friendly, civilized and welcoming! Iran is a different world from Azerbaijan!
There was a long journey waiting for me on the Iraninan side of the border though and the lack of Farsi speaking skills added an extra stress to the process of finding transport to Rasht - my first destination in Iran. I actually managed to agree a reasonable price with a taxi driver (120000 Rials = USD15.00) and we headed to Rasht. The trip took approximately 2 hours including a stop for some tea.
Iranians are very hospitable and keep inviting you for tea wherever you go.
So, the painful bit was over...next chapter will be much more pleasant...I promise.
Beijos e boa viagem!
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akkochan on

Greeting from London
It was great hear from you about your journey.

Hey Luiz,
this is Akko's husband - my hat goes off to you for this trip. As to being a Brazilian abroad and the Ronaldo connection, what about Pele, Rivaldo, Socrates,Garrincha,Rivelino etc, etc ...I could go on

Hope to meet you when you get back - Mike

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