Nasir Al-Mulk Mosque, Shiraz, Iran

“When you’re traveling, you are what you are, right there and then. People don’t have your past to hold against you. No yesterdays on the road” -William Least Heat-Moon

This quote always comes to mind before and during my travels. As I am sitting on my bed writing this post, my almost-packed suitcase sits on the floor next to my bed. By this time tomorrow, I will be on a plane which will be headed to Munich, Germany. From there, I will be headed to Iran.

It’s difficult to explain how I feel because although I am very excited to see my relatives and friends after six years, I am also afraid of not being able to “fit in” with them. To most people, six years may not seem like a very long time; however, that consists of 30% of my life thus far! Throughout those years, I’ve grown so much as an individual and I cannot even begin to imagine the person I would have become had I not immigrated to the United States. My fear of not being able to “fit in” with those whom I grew up with comes from this very fact–I have simply matured and grown in an environment so very different than my home country, with people of all religions, ethnicities, and values.

Back to William Least Heat-Moon’s quote–it’s the perfect combination of words that has helped ease the stress of traveling for me. Also, it has allowed me to be present in the moment and greatly appreciate all of the amazingly beautiful and magical views I have witnessed throughout my travels. How is that relevant to my upcoming trip to Iran? With the mindset that this destination will be a new one, I will have the ability to express myself more easily and be whoever I’ve grown to be in the past six years without having to worry about how my friends and relatives will react to our differences.

Hopefully, I’ll have the chance to update my posts during my stay; but with so many relatives and friends, so much good food, so many places to visit, and such little time, I’m not sure I can make any promises!

Here I come Summer of 2016!! (or at least a part of it)

Also, here’s a video for a little inspiration. My heart feels full already:

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