Samaneh Mohammadzadeh – Tehran isn’t all about a crowded city, winter air pollution, Iranian political and economical capital and hectic days. Like any other mega capitals in the world, Tehran has a tender and soft heart behind his face. There are hundreds of cozy places to take shelter after the busy days of work or school, to refresh your soul and mind alone or with the company of a close friend. To name some, Shemiran’s alley gardens, restaurants with live music, Shahr-e Ketab book stores can be wise options.
Residing near Tehran University at Enqelab street, Daricheh (means window) cafe is one of those popular, cozy cafes for university students which is known for its traditional herbal drinks and cafe lattés. As I sit in the cafe i look around and see the decorative stuffs, charity posters and art works on the dark wooden walls and the small paper memos in forms of poem or prose under the glass of wooden tables which might be from happy lovers or loyal customers of the cafe.
Till my friend arrival, I order tea only. Of course tea of Persian style, which is served in curvy little glass with sugar cubes or Nabat (sugar crystal). The coffee-girl offered me to take a look at their public book shelve or play a game till my friend comes. I prefer to stay curious at my seat and discover more about the cafe, I ask her if I can take some pictures and she answers it depends on management permission. As I’m waiting for the permission, I look around again. This time I turn my head to two tables away, an elderly man moves the chair for his wife, who is at his age, to seat with an smile. It’s lovely scene, since often cafes in Iran were for young people, or at least middle aged people and now seeing two old love birds came to the cafe to tweet together and drink something brings me an especial joy mixed with optimism. That’s the epiphany I talked about at first.
Giving the permission to photograph, Yavari talks about his wish about opening this cafe long time ago when he had a full time job in a governmental section. When he became retired, he took some courses and then opened the cafe. He says his wish was to have a cafe for everyone’s tastes, old and young and even for smokers and non smokers. He then points to the upstairs where customers could smoke without the smell of cigarette irritating others. It was interesting to know how the air conditioning worked there, since I couldn’t smell the smoke from where I was sitting. He also tells me about the visit Italian tourists had to his cafe the other week and how the cafe latte he had made, caused a nostalgia for the Italians. Talking with him was the second good feeling which I had in the cafe. This was perhaps another opportunity to prove cafe was a wise option.