a change of plans

I have decided to postpone my visit to Iran by three weeks.

What happened is this. I had been hanging around in London waiting for an agency in Turkey to arrange for me a train from Istanbul to Tehran. A few days ago I was sorely disappointed when they informed me that the weekly train, leaving next Wednesday, was fully booked. By then I was determined to make this train journey and asked them instead to book the next available one – leaving Ankara on the 5th of October. I was waiting for news of this when, through a friend, I made the acquaintance of Lloyd Llewellyn-Jones, who happens to be a professor at Edinburgh University specialising in Achaemenid Persia. In the middle of giving me inspiring advice about travelling in Iran, he told me that he was hosting a conference on Persepolis in Edinburgh in mid-October and invited me to attend.

At first I thought to continue with my original plan, but the temptation to go to this conference grew in me until, this morning, I told him I would attend. I have asked my Turkish contacts to book train tickets for three weeks’ time, and I will be returning to Edinburgh tomorrow.

I will try and report my experiences from the conference – apart from wanting to go for the content, I’m also curious to see what they’re like – I’ve read so many collections of papers from such conferences. My understanding is that the achaemenid community is quite small, and that these conferences are rare beasts…

I’m really rather excited at the prospect 🙂

Posted by Ricardo

writer and blogger

5 Replies to “a change of plans”

  1. adorava estar aí. partilha a este sequioso admirador a tua experiência.


  2. Edinburgh! I’ve heard that that is a city well worth visiting, Ricardo! 😉

    I think visiting the conference is indeed a good opportunity, not to pass up on! Might yield some valuable stuff for your book. And of course, there’s the anorak-watching, though I think it might not be dissimilar to a Scifi convention (though perhaps with less costumes).


    1. Yes, I’d heard it was a nice city :OP

      I can’t see how it could fail to help with my book… But also I’m hoping to make some useful contacts. My experience of academics is that they’re keen to share their enthusiasms and rarely get a chance to do so except with their peers… I would be surprised if it was like a scifi convention, but we shall see 🙂


  3. Well, that sounds like several good things coming together: An exciting congress, plus best prospects for getting your train ride booked safe and sound, and in the way you need it. Mazel tov :-)!


    1. 🙂 that’s the way I look at it too, Michael, thanks


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