Given the need to prepare visas for the upcoming countries, we unwillingly spent quite some time (too much time!) in 3 major Iranian cities: Hamedan, Tehran and Kashan (the last to escape the madness of Tehran).
Our time in these cities can quickly be summarised in:
• tiles, many tiles of many colours and shapes
• paperwork, lots and lots of paperwork and filling in application forms on our phones
• sitting in parks
• walking round bazaars
• waiting in embassies
• visiting museums
• more ice-cream
The enforced hanging around was due to the 4 day waiting time between application and collecting of the Chinese visa and most importantly, the 10 day(!) waiting time between application and knowing if we would win the lottery and get the Turkmenistan visa. Then we would finally know if we were actually meant to continue cycling East or in fact West, back to Azerbaijan and catch a ferry across the Caspian Sea.
But, while in Kashan we eventually got the answer to our dilemma…