American Elephants


Westerners Don’t Understand How Very Different Life Is In Iran by The Elephant's Child

iran-leisure-ski-snow-1426282008-2260Winter snow brings out the skiers in Iran, and there are ski resorts in the Elburz mountains outside Tehran — but winter fun is a little different there. Police have been deployed to enforce the segregation of male and female skiers.

General Hossein Sajadinia, the commander of the Greater Tehran police force, promised that his officers would “prevent any immoral offences by the skiers”.

He told local media that a “ski police unit” had been equipped with new uniforms to “withstand the mountainous conditions and yet be flexible enough to arrest offenders while chasing them on the slopes”.

Young Iranians meet and mix on the mountains, where some women push back their veils while dining in ski slope restaurants and shisha cafes.

General Sajadinia said they have sent a number of women officers to learn how to ski so they can carry out their assigned duties of dealing with women who defy the Islamic hijab, or anyone who plays loud music — especially when mixing with the opposite sex or committing sexual harassment. The ski slopes are segregated and women are not allowed to ski in the absence of a husband, father or brother.

A week ago, a court in Isfahan banned hiking by mixed gender people both by foreign tourists and local visitors. The trend, the court said was “an affront to the religious and revolutionary values of the Islamic Republic. Hassan Rouhani’s government is being criticized by hardliners for the lax social codes appearing in the country. Here’s a lonely ski policeman.

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I think that I shall never ski
Again against so stout a tree
A tree whose bark is now impressed
In bas relief upon my chest

I tell you, those Iranians really know how to suck all the fun out of stuff. I, personally would not be interested in driving two hours, strapping a couple of 1×4’s to my feet, and sliding down the side of a mountain without the possibility of some sort of congratulatory affection from my female companion. That would seem like a waste of time to me.

Comment by Lon Mead




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