Hmmm... Things are really bubbling over in Iran. I've been speaking with various people who have direct dealings with Iran and they are very sceptical of my visit at this time.
What are your thoughts given recent events?
I have no fear of the Iranian people, I would love to visit their country; I hear only positive things about them. However, the government is a whole new kettle of fish, and a blonde-haired western boy is gonna stick out like a sore thumb and possibly attract suspicion.
On a side note; while in Dubai over Christmas I went to the creek to scope out the possibility of catching a ride on a trading boat. As soon as I arrived I was invited aboard one boat for a cup of tea, and that created a lot of positive reactions from other Iranians who saw me on the boat. I think in Bandar Abbas it will be even easier to get a lift, as I won't blend in amongst other westerners. See, this is what I can expect from the country, but then there is that dark cloud over it all of suspicion and risk.
My alternative is through Saudi, if it is at all possible to get a visa which is unlikely, even though I know some Saudi's. Also Syria, which is a no-go, so I'd have to get to Lebanon by boat from Turkey. I really don't want to go through Saudi, even though it would be a great chance to improve my Arabic!
Your thoughts are appreciated!
So I've made up my mind; Iran is a no-go for the time being. Here is a message from a friend I have in Iran:
"Dear William, as a matter of fact things are a bit unstable recently and a bit different since we talked before. I heard some news about tourists issues and problems. I hope Irans international problems will be solved and every body will back to normal life. My be its better to delay a bit and try to see Iran a bit later. Hope you can arrange your time and also wish to spend some good times together then."
Thats the kick that was needed to get me off the fence... So Plan B.