Hi Michael,

Nice picture, thank you.
I am fine thanx, trying to do a good project with phd and life. No I did not do anything special the 8th of march. But yes it was women day. It was also “Semla day”, eveyone eats semla. Dont know what it is called in english.
But it is not my favorite. so i did not eat.

Oh, hope that B. will be better soon. Nice that I. went to the mountains. And hope the students have fun in munich.

/Mrs. F.

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Hi Mrs. F. dear,

Thanks for writing, and for keeping me up to date. I was thinking about you today, when I saw the pictures in TV how they measure children in Japan for radioiodine contamination in the thyroid. somehow, it has a lot to do with your MSc project here, don”t you think so ?

This morning on my way to the institute I was passing the BMW world, and they gave a Jazz-conzert there. It was an absurd atmosphere, hearing the music that tried to sound very relaxed (you would say “calm”), seeing the properly dressed Munich people with a self-confident expression of joy on their faces. They did very well ignoring the catastrophy that is going on on the other side of the world. It seems so far away, like news from another universe. But it will effect all of us, sooner or later, does not matter if it is 8000 km away like Japan or “just” 1310 km like Stockholm.
Such events are not part of our life planning, right ? We would be completely paralysed every morning if we would know the omnipresent danger of life beeing wiped away by earth quake, Tsunamis or blasting atom reactors. People could not love each other any more, I think, let away doing somethink creative like building a house, writing a paper or a piece of music, working on a 3 year PhD project.
Somehow we have to have the ability to ignore what is going on around us.

Is “Semla” probably the persian word for semolina,
سمولینا ?
It is coarsly grinded wheat or corn (like flour, but more like a granulate ?) If it is this, I have to admit I liked very much when I was kid, and still eat it if I”m a sort of very exhausted. You said you don”t like, but maybe it depends on how it is cooked. You have to try when it is cooked in sweet milk, then it is realy tasty.
It is a pitty very much, Mrs. F., I never cooked something for you while you were here. You know I am very good in cooking a meal called Plow. I learned it from a friends mother, she was from Usbekistan, and Plow is their national meal. After I practiced several times, she invited me and I had to cook it again under her supervision. Than we all eat it and at the end I got a certificate from her (no joke !!!). I have to say, I probably do the best Plow in central europe, and this was also confirmed when I fed last year a whole birthday party of 45 people with it.
Of course I am as usual interested in the cross-cultural relation with plow, I knew it is very common in Turkey (Pilaw) and Aserbaidshan.
I asked Omid very often how it is in Iran. He just could not figure out the word.
But meanwhile I know, the persian word is Polo (I learned from http://www.iranian.com), or
پلو
It is so tasty, you can not imagine (if it is done with lamb and with carrots and decorated with fresh tomato). I think you would have molten away, if I would have had the chance to cook it for you. Maybe another time I will do.

Is Semla day already the beginning of Norooz ? I”m going to send you something for Norooz, I hope you will like. It is in fact something that was originally yours, but you forgot it here, and I did some decorative work on it, so it looks more pretty now. It will be a surprise, I hope you don”t mind.

Life is a mystery, don”t you think so ? But it is also a big revelation, occasionally.

Take Care, Mrs. F.

Michael

PS: I will never say again “poor Mrs. F.”, this was stupid, I know. You are stronger than you appear, and it is good for me to know.

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