DETERMINED TO DISCOVER IRAN myself, I became obsessed with the idea of somehow sneaking in. Unfortunately, visiting Iran on a British passport is impossible unless upon an organized tour, which isn’t really my style.
And so, out of desperation and the feeling that something powerful was drawing me towards this oft-described Axis of Evil, I commenced Operation Become Irish.
Operation Become Irish took nearly a year to complete but, after much paperwork and a fair amount of begging, the Emerald Isle finally gave in and granted me citizenship on account of my Irish grandparents.
Finally, with an Irish passport, I could now travel to Iran.
Many friends and colleagues told me that visiting Iran was bound to be difficult and fraught with danger at every turn — I was told that sex, drugs, hitchhiking and Couchsurfing, a few of my favorite pastimes, would all be impossible in Iran.
Despite almost everybody I knew having a strong opinion, there were six things that nobody told me about Iran: