Small World After All

“I’ve known Hooman was Persian ever since I first heard [his] name at CHEPS, but I’ve only ever spoken to him briefly on my way in and out of the building. But this semester, we’ve been talking more than usual because we’re working on a data set. While we were reviewing the information and creating the document on the first day of the summer semester, he asked a few questions about Iran.”

Sogand Soghrati and Hooman Niktafar smiling at the camera while standing in front of a whiteboard with writing on it.

“Since he was already aware of my university during undergrad and master’s, he inquired as to my location within the city. His enthusiasm when asking ‘Which street did you live on?’ told me we must have been from the same neighborhood. He revealed his address, and unexpectedly, it was only a short distance from mine! The city we both called home, Tehran, is not exactly a small town, so this comes as quite a surprise. We could’ve been from areas hours away. But it gets better; he has no idea about this but when I returned home to tell my parents, I discovered that he actually lived on the same street as my grandparents! They were most likely neighbors. Maybe I met him when I was a kid and we’ve known each other all along! The world is much smaller than we think it is.”

– Written by Sogand Soghrati, CHEPS student