2009 © David Burnett / Contact Press Images
Foreigners at Mehrabad Airport in Tehran waiting for flights to
leave Iran. The well-named "waiting lounge" was much more 'wait' than
'lounge,' and with the ever increasing flood of foreigners who were
trying to leave the country, combined with the disruption the Revolution
caused to scheduled air travel, many were forced to wait days. The
upside, for a photographer, was that you had a near-captive audience,
ready to board a plane for Paris or London or other points west, who
could carry your film out. "Shipping" as such no longer existed, and we
were obliged, much as Blanche DuBois was in "A Streetcar Named Desire,"
to rely on "the kindness of strangers." Tehran, Jan. 2, 1979.