Life... Predictably Unpredictable

Worrying is like a rocking chair. It gives you something to do, but it doesn't get you anywhere.

Location: Alexandria, VA, United States

Monday, November 20, 2006

Syracuse, New York - 13210

I still remember my flight from Detroit to Syracuse, I was as excited as a baby playing with his favorite red ball! I was going to get down in the city which would help me fulfill my dream of getting my folks to visit me someday in the United States. It is pretty cliched considering the fact that everyone makes the trip "saath samundar paar" but still at that time it was a major goal (still is...) in my life. It was about 6:30 in the evening, the sky was overcast and there was this very evident "dullness" floating around in the air. I was tired and weary after a mamoth flight and as I pushed the trolley with all the luggage out of Hancock International Airport, I was hoping to see some tall buildings, sophisticated constructions but instead all that greeted me were a few Cabs and a bunch of other Indian aspirants like me trying to figure their way out of the airport.

There was this unique silence in the air which made me very uneasy. There weren't many birds chirping or any crows going crazy flying aimlessly in the sky. There was nothing wrong, no tension but still the silence just made me too too uncomfortable. I found some deep solace when I looked towards my friends and found the same "Where the hell did we land" look on their face. I was aware that I shouldn't expected the sophistication of Manhattan but the eerie silence was not what I had pictured during my last leg of travel from Detroit. I hopped into a cab really wondering what I have gotten myself into! It was the first time it sunk into me that I had actually left all comforts of home, food, familiarities and am out to develop an identity from scratch.

As planned, I crashed at a friend's place. I am still indebted to him for doing his best to help me initially but there is only little a person can do when he is pretty much trying to get into his own! Coming from the most popular city in India, this was too much of a shock for me to take and though I knew, I would pull off my time there somehow, I never ever thought I would actually sit and recollect those days and pen down a few lines. The place was horribly cold, I had to work in a food court and wash dishes, face the brunt of limited public transportation and many more things but still, to me, Syracuse is home in the United States. Not many of my friends who read this would concur with me as there are many more places worth remembering in the US.

I still call Bombay home and never thought I would call another place by that name but Syracuse taught me that home is not where the heart lies or people do. Home is a place which you can identify with, a place which doesn't have anything in particular to offer but can generate some of the best/worst memories,experiences and learnings for life if one is aware and receptive enough!

This has been the most random assortation of my thoughts but I am sure there is some small (or smaller) town student somewhere who has moved into a big city for a job but still reels on old memories like me and can relate to the eccentricities inside my senile mind!


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