|the ideal (although note that this is a two-lane road)|
|the reality (n.b. motorcycles are on the pavement)|
|No Ruz road safety campaign?|
Here we meet a clutch of very friendly Chinese and Taiwanese backpackers - a new phenomenon for us.
|cool Chinese backpackers|
Around the corner is our favourite little cafe that still serves the same tasty egg and tomato dish. ("What do you call it in Farsi?" "Omelette.")
We collect the bikes and my new sunglasses and while away the first couple of holidays. The city suddenly seems deserted. Majid had told us the city is much pleasanter in No Ruz - less traffic and so the air is cleaner and you can always see the mountains. Most of the shops are closed and the frenzied Christmas-like shopping activity has died down.
|as rare as hen's teeth - an empty road mid-morning downtown Tehran|
We missed the bazaar the last time we were here and now it is closed. Oh well. We have also missed our friend Cyrus who has gone to Turkey with his missus. We are really keen to meet up with him again so we hope we can before we leave Iran. Before we leave we meet Raimon, a Catalan cyclist going our way. He's arrived to start the big Central Asian Visa Trawl. We should meet up again on the road insh'Allah.
|final adjustments at Mr. Jabbari's bike shop|