So here I am on a timer again. I look around the apartment and see how much work I have ahead of me until the packers come to take our belongings once more.

Sitting in the terrace and looking at the wonderful view I enjoyed for the last 4 years, I can’t believe it went this fast.

From this terrace I saw the seasons go by. These mountains have kept me company and inspired me for so long now.

It seems like yesterday when I arrived in this beautiful country with no expectations but with a very open mind.

I remember the excitement the first time I entered a bazar. So much life! So much to see, feel, smell.

And this sense of safety I never felt anywhere else. It may be hard to believe for people who don’t know anything about Iran but I always felt safe here. And welcomed, warmly welcomed!

I was talking to a friend today who leads the same life as me and we were saying how often when we feel we are comfortable in a country and we are able to accomplish some of the projects and dreams we have, it is once again time to move. And she has accomplished so much. We met years ago in Saudi Arabia and have since followed and supported each other’s paths.

You feel you are constantly starting over and each time you have to struggle to achieve your goals. Our husbands start over too but somehow they know what awaits them. It is their profession that makes us globetrotters after all.

With us, it is different, there is nothing waiting for us. Usually there is a big question mark and many obstacles to overcome. Will I be able to be as creative as I was here? Will new projects materialize, new exhibitions, will I be inspired?

And it is not only us women, there are male spouses who also follow their wives and go through the same.

It is often overwhelming and many times frustrating but at the same time, I have to go on. I can’t just turn in the towel.

An important part is of course the support of your spouse, without that there is no point. It is a two way street. There is only so much I can smile, make small talk, be a host, hear about difficulties and achievements without expecting anything in return.

My daughter was always my priority and she will always be but she also realizes that I need to achieve my goals too and she has shown me how proud she feels for my successes.

We the spouses need to remember we are people too. We deserve to be successful and dream big. And also to remember that it is never too late.

I am grateful to have a husband who has pushed me hard, took no excuses and forced me to achieve my goals even when I doubted myself.

Thanks to that when I was leaving Vienna to come to Tehran surrounded by boxes, I was still writing and photographing, preparing my collaboration in the book “The World Atlas of Street Food” published by Thames & Hudson.

In Tehran I had three photo exhibitions and worked as a curator as well. And now that the piles are starting to accumulate here, I’m still trying to finish my last Iranian project which is very close to my heart. I use Skype, I wake up at 5 AM to avoid crowds. I also write in between sorting out things and supporting the long distance schooling of my daughter.

Sometimes I need to stop, sit outside and breath. I wish I had more time. I think we all do. But if there is one thing this Corona crisis showed us, it is that we need to set our priorities straight. Tomorrow is at the moment a guessing game full of questions marks. Now is here! Whatever it is, do it now!



Welcome! Through my photography and my travels, you will discover the people I have encountered and the places that will stay with me forever. In this crazy new reality we seem to be living, it is even more important to be grateful for all the people who have crossed our path and touched us in same way. As for all the old and new stones, they can live in our imaginary for now, waiting, when the time is right again ...


  • Luisa Sharp says:

    Very true and quite an achievement you made in Iran. I am sure more interesting adventures awaits you. ❤️

  • Mena Shaw says:

    It was great that you had the opportunity and help to reach your goals in Iran! I’m certain that wherever you go next you’ll be able to continue on your journey and we’ll be happy and looking forward to see your next project! 😘😘

    • Maria says:

      Thank you Mena. I hope I can really continue to do what I’m passionate about and I’ll be happy to show you my next project when it is ready.

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