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Full Version: The Curmudgeon Infidel Professor
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23 Jan 2019
I am an old curmudgeon and a comparative religions professor at a university in Iran. I am also an infidel (ie., non-Muslim) but well-known and liked, with many friends. The administration knows I am harmless and so they tolerate me, and have done so for years.

One day, I visit the Comparative Religions section of the University Library, and find that it is being shut down. There are many well-used references in boxes.
I see that my old friend Mrs. Azad, a middle-aged woman in conservative dress, is going to lose her job. I tell her,
"You have always been so helpful to me and to all the other patrons! I am sure you will find a good job soon, and I would be happy to give you a good reference."
She has her hands clasped in front of her, and I touch the top of her hands with two fingers of my right hand at arm's length, to reassure her.
Mrs. Azad tenses up. I realize that she is terrified, and that my attention has endangered her, maybe endangered her life.
"We attempt to serve," she tells me, bowing slightly. I leave the building at once.

I realize later that I have carried a stapler home from the library, so I decide to return it.
Although the building used to be open 24 hours a day for the students, it is dark now. Oddly the glass doors in front are wide open.
I go inside, and notice a blinking red light in the middle of the entry hall floor. I decide to lay the stapler down and leave. Bernard, the security guard, is sitting in the dark at the side of the hall.
"What are you doing here, Mr. A.--?"
I explain myself. He nods, then shakes his head and waves me away.
I realize I will never be able to go into the library again.

After typing this, I googled "Iranian Library Closures" and found this image of the "National Library of Iran" in Wikipedia:

The entrance looks like the same library entrance that was in my dream. Hmmm....
I have not been able to find any notice of closure of any library, or section of a library, in Iran.
Maybe they will close for renovation soon. Update if you find one that did close.