Saturday, August 25, 2012

Of The Power of Introverts...

I wrote last week that I saw a video on It was a ted talk by Susan Cain. She talks about the power of introverts and how they are not such bad people as they are made out to be. I loved it to the T. I had thought of writing it this week but I really want to write it now because I have just come from a party that was full of extroverts and I was the only one who wasn't talking much :( People were drinking, laughing, "networking", etc, etc. And everyone is like, you are from Delhi! But you don't look like one. Ouch! I don't know but there are very few places where I feel at home. Mujhe in cheezon se bilkul bhi khushi nahi milti. Maybe they like it because it helps them let go of things as Jay said in I Hate Luv Storys, "Kabhi kabhi khush rehne ke liye khul kar jeena padta need to let go.". And I am that sort of a person who doesn't let go of things. I hate to lose control over myself. This week I had a meeting with my professor M. In one meeting, she could figure me out. She told me to increase my space. She said you are an active listener but try to project more space for yourself. When you sit, try to increase your area..expand your legs, and sit completely on the chair..this will help project a feeling of confidence. And then she said, "I am not asking you to change but come out of the way you are temporarily for two years..don't change permanently." I know she was saying it all right but as always I felt why can't I be like this. Am I such a big misfit? And then I re-read the transcript again just to convince myself :(
Susan says,

We sat in rows of desks like this, and we did most of our work pretty autonomously. But nowadays, your typical classroom has pods of desks -- four or five or six or seven kids all facing each other. And kids are working in countless group assignments. Even in subjects like math and creative writing, which you think would depend on solo flights of thought, kids are now expected to act as committee members. And for the kids who prefer to go off by themselves or just to work alone, those kids are seen as outliers often or, worse, as problem cases. And the vast majority of teachers reports believing that the ideal student is an extrovert as opposed to an introvert, even though introverts actually get better grades and are more knowledgeable, according to research. 

Okay, same thing is true in our workplaces. Now, most of us work in open plan offices, without walls, where we are subject to the constant noise and gaze of our coworkers. And when it comes to leadership, introverts are routinely passed over for leadership positions, even though introverts tend to be very careful, much less likely to take outsize risks -- which is something we might all favor nowadays. And interesting research by Adam Grant at the Wharton School has found that introverted leaders often deliver better outcomes than extroverts do, because when they are managing proactive employees, they're much more likely to let those employees run with their ideas, whereas an extrovert can, quite unwittingly, get so excited about things that they're putting their own stamp on things, and other people's ideas might not as easily then bubble up to the surface.

Number three: Take a good look at what's inside your own suitcase and why you put it there. So extroverts, maybe your suitcases are also full of books. Or maybe they're full of champagne glasses or skydiving equipment. Whatever it is, I hope you take these things out every chance you get and grace us with your energy and your joy. But introverts, you being you, you probably have the impulse to guard very carefully what's inside your own suitcase. And that's okay. But occasionally, just occasionally, I hope you will open up your suitcases for other people to see, because the world needs you and it needs the things you carry.

I totally agree with what she says especially the end part where she talks about the book and the suitcase. I also loved the part where she explains the difference between shyness and introversion. "It's different from being shy. Shyness is about fear of social judgment. Introversion is more about, how you respond to stimulation, including social stimulation." I am shy too. I am very scared of social judgment. On my Facebook, I have put my privacy settings as custom, sharing my status updates with only about 1/4 of the total friend list :( So I am both shy and introverted :\ I am more active on Twitter because I have only about 4-5 close friends as followers, the rest are blocked. Pata nahi what will happen with me in the future. If only I could figure out what I really want to be in life...then perhaps these things might stop bothering me. If only I could find out the places which make me really really happy from inside. There are free counseling services for students at the University...I will go there soon.

And as I came from the party now, everyone was talking about their girlfriends/boyfriends..blah blah..You know in Break Ke Baad, Aaliya (Deepika Padukone) says to her mom, "Maybe I am not meant for love." I have been thinking about this for a long time. And I am not talking about only romantic love. Any sort of a relationship...I don't have any feeling..whatever I had in past, I was only trying to convince myself. I don't know whether it is a sign of growing up or emotional maturity, but I have realized that I am indifferent to the feeling of love...And then I thought about what Meredith once said, 

There is a reason I said I’d be happy alone. It wasn't because I thought I would be happy alone. It was because I thought if I loved someone and then it fell apart, I might not make it. It’s easier to be alone. Because what if you learn that you need love? And then you don’t have it. What if you like it? And lean on it? What if you shape your life around it? And then it falls apart? Can you even survive that kind of pain? Losing love is like organ damage. It’s like dying. The only difference is, that death ends. This? It could go on forever...

I am 25! Mera kya hoga na life me...I need help no? :(

Dialogue of the Day:
"Maybe I am not meant for love." 
  - Aaliya, Break Ke Baad

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Of The Happiness Advantage, Phoebe's Bicycle, And Precious Item to be Rescued from Fire...

Hmmm...Long time no see...

This week was a very interesting one and a hectic one as well. Had orientation the entire week and met all the classmates. On the first day, it was like a culture shock. People from such diverse backgrounds..more than 70% of the class is married. These Americans marry quite early! People are from such diverse professions..there is a gymnast from Brazil, a 40-year old professor who taught artificial vasculature and now wants to shift fields, a guy who used to manage casinos, a teacher from Jamaica, and a lot more others. Interesting to know about such people..everyone has their own fascinating story..

Anyways, this week I saw an amazing video on Shwan Achor, a psychologist who has written a book called The Happiness Advantage, talks about how we can find happiness in our lives. He talks about how success can never lead to happiness, instead what we require are positive influences in our lives that help rewire our brain to find happiness.

He says, 

First, every time your brain has a success, you just changed the goalpost of what success looked like. You got good grades, now you have to get better grades, you got into a good school and after you get into a better school, you got a good job, now you have to get a better job, you hit your sales target, we're going to change your sales target. And if happiness is on the opposite side of success, your brain never gets there. What we've done is we've pushed happiness over the cognitive horizon as a society. And that's because we think we have to be successful, then we'll be happier.

But the real problem is our brains work in the opposite order. If you can raise somebody's level of positivity in the present, then their brain experiences what we now call a happiness advantage, which is your brain at positive performs significantly better than it does at negative, neutral or stressed. 
If we can find a way of becoming positive in the present, then our brains work even more successfully as we're able to work harder, faster and more intelligently.

What we need to be able to do is to reverse this formula so we can start to see what our brains are actually capable of. Because dopamine, which floods into your system when you're positive, has two functions. Not only does it make you happier, it turns on all of the learning centers in your brain allowing you to adapt to the world in a different way.

We've found that there are ways that you can train your brain to be able to become more positive. In just a two-minute span of time done for 21 days in a row, we can actually rewire your brain, allowing your brain to actually work more optimistically and more successfully. We've done these things in research now in every single company that I've worked with, getting them to write down three new things that they're grateful for for 21 days in a row, three new things each day. And at the end of that, their brain starts to retain a pattern of scanning the world, not for the negative, but for the positive first.

Journaling about one positive experience you've had over the past 24 hours allows your brain to relive it. Exercise teaches your brain that your behavior matters. We find that meditation allows your brain to get over the cultural ADHD that we've been creating by trying to do multiple tasks at once and allows our brains to focus on the task at hand. And finally, random acts of kindness are conscious acts of kindness. We get people, when they open up their inbox, to write one positive email praising or thanking somebody in their social support network.

It's fascinating no? Our mind is a gift to us..what all it can do!! Heard of the placebo effect? Isn't it amazing how just by thinking can cure one of a some condition. I love it. I always wanted to learn and study psychology. Psychologists are terrific observers and analysts. I wish I could learn it. But what Shawn says is very true. I guess I will try the four things he says. We all want to be happy in life no? What is the harm in trying? I remember there was a chapter in Class 12 English book: The Future is Now: A Zest for Living. In that story, the author, Dr. Walter F. Stromer, who was blind, said that happiness is subjective (I love this phrase and use it as a talisman till date).

He wrote:

Let me illustrate how disabled people can be happy in their ignorance. Sometimes during a long Iowa winter I walk to class in the morning and decide it's a nice day because I can feel the sun warming my back. Then some sighted person comes along and says, "It's such a dull, depressing day/' To him it is dull because the sun is under the clouds. That doesn't really destroy my happiness, and I do need to be aware that other people perceive the world in ways other than I do. I need to recognise that, just as I need to turn on lights in a room for the benefit of others even though I don't need them. So I will continue to be happy about the warm sun while my friend is depressed by the gray clouds. And, on other days, I will be depressed by the cold while he enjoys the bright, but cold, sunshine. We can each find happiness in our own way.

Happiness is totally subjective, so stop judging. If you find happiness by reading Fifty Shades of Grey, so be it ;)

Oh! When I searched for the above text, I see he has mentioned Iowa. I only remembered the example which he gave about the weather. When I searched for the above passage, I read Iowa and I am in Iowa. Isn't it so funny and creepy? :) Co-incidence? or Destiny ;-) I miss Class 12 English. Everybody used to think chapters were boring but I loved all of them. Machines and Emotions continues to be my all time favorite. I have written about it before here :) Do read the full text of The Future is Now: A Zest for Living here.

We will find happiness no? As I wrote before..nahi dhoondoge to nahi milegi...

This week, I built a bike. It was one of the team-building activities that we had to do. 

I was remembering Phoebe all the time. In that episode, Phoebe said she never had a bike, so Ross brings a bike for her. Isn't he awesome? That was such a touching gesture. Phoebe is so funny, that she used supporters. Haha! Each of the Friends character is simply amazing. Many people do not like Ross but I think he was awesome. Used to try very hard but never gave up..and he got Rachel. Remember the episode where Rachel is still not over Ross and he is getting married to Emily, so Phoebe devises a method to make her forget Ross. She takes a picture of Ross and puts it in front of Rachel and asks her to think of his bad things. Rachel says one or two but starts saying good things and runs off to London (Remember the line Phoebe says, "Why am I always pregnant when she does that."). That is how shows should be no?...the characters :)  

After about four weeks, I took out time to watch an episode of Modern Family. I spent half on hour for finding a website to stream the episodes. I am never ever disappointed by it. I wish I could watch it all my life. It makes me laugh and cry at the same time. During the episode, one of the family in the neighborhood lost everything due to burning down of their house. So, everyone helps them out and in the end, they all say what is that one thing that they will take it with them if their house was on fire and they said:

And if you could only rescue one thing from his house if it was on fire, what would that be?

JAY: Probably my first set of golf clubs. My old man gave them to me.
GLORIA: The engagement ring that Jay gave me that changed my life.
MITCHELL: Lily's adoption papers.
CAMERON: I was going to say Lily's adoption papers! OK, in that case, my mom's recipe book.
PHIL: All our family photos. Which I keep on my iPad, so I guess my iPad.
CLAIRE: As long as I had my family, I wouldn't need anything else.

After the episode ended, I started thinking about the same question. The first thing that came to my mind was my certificates. I know it is very shallow but I would take all my degrees, certificates, and other papers (passport, et al). And when I started thinking deeply about that one thing I would take, I couldn't come up with anything. Most of my personal things are saved in my email. The most personal thing for me is my blog. I do not know what will happen if I lose it. So I thought what could I take? I felt so terrible that I am such a passion-less person (which I am) :( Before coming to the US, I was looking at my almirah and I was amazed to see the things that I had kept with me. I had saved each of my exam question papers (unit tests, mid terms, end terms) from Class 6th to the final semester of college. I had all answer sheets from Class 9th to Class 12th when they started giving them. The silly friendship bands that we got when were so excited to celebrate Friendship Day (how cheap it sounds these days), the school photographs, the school pics, the school library cards, the school ID card pics (when I saw them, I was ewwww...I hated myself), the slam books, the gifts, a card by someone very special, the small notes that people wrote :). So many things and mom was like throw these things but I was like no..let them be..I think I will take a bag where I have kept these old items...memories..I am so stuck in the past...perhaps that is why I cannot look ahead to the future :( I will find that precious item soon...So what is that one item that you will take it with out if you house is on fire? Would be interesting to know :)

I watched another equally fascinating video on Ted. I guess I will write about it later. I do not know how much time will be there from next week :( Hoping for the best...

Dialogue(s) of the Day:

"There are dreamers and there are realists in this world. You’d think the dreamers would find the dreamers and the realists would find the realists, but more often than not, the opposite is true. You see the dreamers need the realists from keeping them from soaring too close to the sun… And the realists? Well without the dreamers, they might never get off the ground.”
- Cameron, Modern Family
"मन का हो तो अच्छा और न हो तो और भी अच्छा because that means God has other plans for you and will take care of you." - Amitabh Bachchan on The Front Row (Loved the interview)
तेरी हदों में मेरी बसर है ..अब तुझे भी, जाना किधर है..
जहाँ रहे तू..मैं वो जहाँ हु..जिसे जिए तू, मैं वो समां हूँ..
तेरी वजह से नया नया हूँ..पहले कहा न मैंने अब ये तुमसे कहने लगा हूँ..
तुझको जो पाया..तो जीना आया..अब ये लम्हा ठहर जाये थम जाये बस जाये हम दोनों के दरमियान...
- Mere Bina Main, Crook

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Of Settling, Connections, The Blue Umbrella, and Anushka Sharma...

The last week I had written I had so many things to write. When I now think and write, I really do not know what exactly to write. The last week went in settling down. I made my first roti in the shape of India's map that was completely burnt ;D Luckily, my room mate knows cooking, so not much of a problem for cooking. I do the dishes and cleaning and he cooks. Also did some other but necessary things, such as bank account opening, water bill transfer, Internet (still waiting for this), &c &c. Will take some days to settle down.

Now this week, attended some International Student Orientations. No one could speak my name properly :\ Chinese students are everywhere. I mean they are the largest block of students on campus. They are so tiny in height and look so young and all of them are doing Phd/Post Doc/Masters. Secondly, no body can beat Americans in their confidence. They are extremely confident people and can speak to anybody about anything with it in a room or a conference. And they speak very loudly. They have been taught since school to discuss and say everything what they feel. They are not at all diplomatic and will say things on your face.   

And one of my classmates is my senior from college :) She graduated in 2004 and I graduated in 2009. Felt so happy when she said she is also from NSIT. We humans are funny people. We tend to look connections everywhere. I remember when I went to college, I felt so happy to see people from my school. Now when I started working, I looked for people from college. When I switched jobs, I looked for people from old company! When people go to study away from Delhi, they look for Delhites. When they go away from India, they look for Indians. That day is not far, when in a galaxy far far away where life is discovered, people will look for other humans from earth. Isn't this an absolutely fascinating thing? This desire/feeling to remain  connected with something familiar..eventually everyone accepts change but as life goes on, it becomes more complicated and perhaps that's why everyone says the phrase "good old days" although they may not have been actually good.

This week I watched The Blue Umbrella, Vishal Bharadwaj's national award winning film. The Iowa Public Library  - I love that place - provides books and DVDs. One can rent as many as he wants. There is a section on Indian films as well. Hindi movies are few but contain many popular titles such as Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, Sholay, Munnabhai and some less popular ones as well, such as Baiju Bawra and Aakrosh. I got the Blue Umbrella from there. I had been wanting to see this film for a long time and luckily I found it here. It is a short film and although it is a children's film based on a novella by Ruskin Bond, I found the underlying theme of the movie to be very nuanced..too difficult for kids to understand the various layers the film has. It talks about guilt, remorse, selfishness, materialism, selflessness, jealousy, and above all the thing that we are looking for - inner peace. Pankaj Kapur is absolutely terrific in the movie. While watching the movie, I was constantly being reminded that I have seen the place where the film was shot. Looked like Khajjiar in Himachal Pradesh..also called Switzerland of India. I had gone to that place on a school trip in Class 12. I haven't had a terrible trip than that one. It was and still remains the worst trip of my life. The actress who brilliantly played Vicky's mom in Vicky Donor also plays a small role in the film. Bharadwaj, like Anurag Kashyap, makes fascinating characters, such as the doctor who calls his wife Lily (original name Leelawati), or the kid who calls his Mama by his name, or Khatri who loves to eat achaar and swindles things from kids. At one point in the movie, Vishal pays a tribute to the one director who has brought about this revolution in the indie film space - Quentin Tarantino. In the film in one scene, a character says, “Saanp bill me ghus ke Kill Bill Kill Bill kar raha tha". Amazing. I love Kill Bill. It is one of my favorite movies. I  still  haven't seen Kill Bill 2 though. Remember a few years back there was a show on Star One - The Great Indian Comedy Show (no not the The Great Indian Laughter Challenge). It was too good. They used to show some amazing spoofs. I recall watching a spoof on Kill Bill, in which Purvi Joshi (what a brilliant actress she is) spoofed Uma Thurman and was on a mission to kill her husband Khemchand Tarantadiya (Quentin Tarantino) :) Where have such good shows disappeared? I cannot find any video link for it. Do let me know if you find one. Back to The Blue won the national award for best children's film but I think it is more suited for adults rather than kids. If you can sit through a slow movie, do watch it..

Also, I watched two back to back episodes of The Front Row. I love that show. How can I miss it! I have really started to like Anushka Sharma a lot. She has grown beautifully as an actress. In the interview with Anupama, she talks with such honesty that it brings this freshness, unlike other heroines who give such cliched answers. Sonam is another rockstar, who is never ever diplomatic. In the interview, Anushka isn't afraid to take names of heroines whose work she loves. She also said that she is doing a film with Katrina Kaif but she knows her place in the industry. 

She says:

Anupama: So you’re not insecure about working with other heroines, working with your contemporaries.

Anushka: Not at all. I’ve done two films. In one film there were three other actresses (“Ladies vs Ricky Bahl”) and now I’m doing Yash Chopra’s film with Katrina Kaif who is one of the biggest stars in the country.

I do have moments when I feel insecure. I do have moments when I feel jealous and that’s normal. It’s a very normal emotion. It’s your action and your attitude and your reaction to that that is important. So my reaction is that, “Yes I am doing a film with Katrina Kaif, but I know my place.” See I value myself and I will not be okay with anybody undervaluing me. I will not overvalue myself at the same time. So I know why I’m doing Yash Chopra’s film, because I have a role that comes full circle. It gives me satisfaction. I finished the film thinking I was happy doing this.

Also, on being asked which film she would have loved to work in, she made a very interesting answer. She said that if there was any film that was being remade, she would love to play the role of Manisha Koirala in Dil Se. I haven't seen Dil Se completely but seen it intermittently and really like it. I still believe that it was  one of Rehman's best music. Satrangi Re is sheer brilliance. The songs of the film are like poetry in motion. That is an excellent choice by Anushka and a smart one too. I really hope her next film starring SRK and Katrina Kaif and directed by Yash Chopra, rumored to be a remake of Daag, does well. She deserves better :)
Do read the interview here

Ok..the thing I have been trying to avoid to write but can't help it. I was fine but for the last few days, I have started to feel lonely. Not exactly homesick. Now the initial period is over and the real grind starts. There is this very weird feeling of loneliness and helplessness that comes at times. As always, I don't speak much with new people and it takes time for me to open up. I know in MBA, you have to network a lot but I don't do this. I can't be too frank with people like others. I feel out of place so many times. That is why I feel I will never be successful in life. In fact, I really do not know what I call success. Everything will turn out fine no? 

Anyways, a difficult week starts from tomorrow. I hope to keep on writing. As I used to say to you, mujhe zyada miss mat karna..thora sa kar lena :\

Dialogue of the Day:
पहाड़ी के पीछे डूबते सूरज को देखते हुए कोई फायदा होता है क्या, पानी में कागज़ की नाव को तैराने का कोई फायदा होता है क्या, इन्द्रधनुष को देख कर कोई फायदा होता है क्या...आत्मा की शांति में नफा नुक्सान नहीं देखा जाता...  
 - Nand Kishore Khatri, The Blue Umbrella

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Of Eventful Journey and First Days...

So long time no see...
It is about five days in the US. I don't know where to begin or what to begin with..the mind is cluttered with so many thoughts just like the luggage in my room. I left New Delhi on 01 August, travelling for the first time to a different country..someone like me who has never stayed away from home for more than 10 days, who has travelled outside Delhi in just 4 trips in the last five years (all office trips)..I was getting goosebumps. Mummy bhi na itna emotional ho jati hai..I wish she had another and a better son :/ Anyways, so I had to fly to Chicago and then take a connecting flight to Cedar Rapids, which is fifteen minutes away from Iowa City. I flew by Air prizes for guessing about their service..rude crew members, frustrated souls with no regard for customer service. There was a stopover at Frankfurt for two hours. Frankfurt looked beautiful from the top...such beautiful houses and fields. And while coming, I watched Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu on the flight and couldn't help but wonder at the similarities between Rahul (Imran) and I. At one point, Riana (Kareena) says to Rahul, "mujhe tumhara problem samajh aa raha hai...tumhara na self esteem bahut low hai." :\ And then I started thinking about some things which I had promised myself that I won't let them bother me..So I reached Chicago airport. It is huge! I landed at about 10:30 AM and my next flight was at 13:55 PM. The security checks, immigration checks and luggage checks are terrifying. An officer came up to me and asked if I was carrying rice. I said yes and then he took them out. What had happened that I met three of my other classmates - A, R and P on the flight. We hadn't planned to travel together but just bumped into each other. This girl P she was carrying 7 bags in all! Seriously!!! I couldn't carry three and she was carrying seven. She somehow got two-three bags as hand baggage in Air India but of course, why would the other flight people allow her the excess baggage? She was asked to pay for them and check in again. Now those two guys A and R simply left without telling anything. How would she carry seven bags? So I helped her out. To go from Chicago International Airport to Domestic Airport, one has to take a metro. To tow such luggage, naturally it took time. We reached the domestic airport at 13:05. She had to check-in again but my luggage was already checked-in, of course she was going to miss the flight. I told her that I am leaving now else I will also miss my flight. She was checking in and I was getting my security check done for the domestic connecting flight. And whoa! there was a huge queue moving at a snail's pace. In my mind, I was thinking I should ask these people to let me go ahead but then I thought this is US, here people will not allow me to jump queues. So after getting scanned from all places with various poses, I got my secutiy check done. It was already 13:45. I literally ran with my belt, documents, and shoes in hand (shudder at the sight :() and reached the gate where the guy tells me, "You flight flew three minutes ago." Oh shit!!!!! Why? For no fault of mine. Oh no! But he said I can adjust you on another flight at 18:00. I went blank. What about my luggage I asked. He said, it will be locked out at Cedar Rapids, so do not worry. What to do? I had to pick up my room keys from the property dealer at 15:30 and his office closed at 17:00. What to do now? I did not bring my cell phone with me as I wanted to keep it at home due to some bank account details. Cannot make phone calls from the phone..luckily, I had written down the address of the property dealer in my diary. I called him up using a public phone booth..wasted 50 cents as did not know how to make the call :( He told me that he will put the keys in an envelope outside his office, so I can come and collect them from there. Now started the process of waiting. I ate a burger at McDonald's for $4.5!! And what was in it - just burger, onion and lettuce. I felt like Rs. 300 for this crap (Yeah I still convert everything into Indian currency). Waited till 18:00..met P again who was going by the same flight. All the while I was thinking about the luggage. Reached Cedar Rapids. I ran to the baggage section and what I was dreading had come true. The lady said there was no luggage! She checked all around but nothing could be found. And P, because of whom I missed the flight, had got her luggage because she travelled in the same flight. I felt so stupid. I mean seriously why! The lady then gave me a helpline number and told probably the luggage hasn't come yet and that I should come again tomorrow. Meanwhile, some Indian students had come to pick us from the airport. They told that it is normal here, so you will get the luggage tomorrow. It was already late...almost 20:00..they told me it would be better if I stayed with those guys, A and R, who had come earlier as I do not have a phone number. So they dropped me at their place (P stays in an apartnemt just below their place). And lo! what I find? They have brought my luggage!!! I felt so releived. But later I felt so irritated at them. Why did they bring my luggage? Who had told them to? At least they could have told the guys who picked me up as they were the same guys who had come to pick them up! They behaved in such a weird manner that they left P and I at the airport, so why showing concern now? And how did they guess that was my luggage? all three bags..They said, when they opened my bags they found photocopies of my passport (which I had put in case of any emergency). So they thought they should bring it for me. If they had helped at the airport, we all would have reached on time. They made such faces when I stayed at their place. And to top it all, they had opened the bag that contained food..ate half of a box of sweets...I know I should be thankful to them but I felt so irritated at those guys :( I had called home from the airport and as soon as I told this mummy started crying on the phone (and it was Rakhi that day and she was about to leave for Mama's place). She got so worried how will I manage and all. Mujhe itna darr nahi lag raha tha jitna mummy ko :\ Then I called her again to say it is all fine now. And she thought I am lying. If I had to lie, why would I tell that in the first place. Then stayed the night at those guys' place and then came back to the room the next day. So this was the first journey to the US began. But it is ok. These are learning experiences. Life teaches lessons. Everything is fine.

So how has life in the US been until now? It is alright. I will write another post soon on my experience with some great people who went out of their way to help us. I haven't cried for home till now and I hope I can stay like this as long as possible :[ I know when some difficult time comes, it will come out :( I have posted some pictures on Facebook. The city is very pretty. The one thing I am literally concerned about is watching Hindi movies. While coming back from the airport, all the while I was thinking about the luggage. The first non luggage related question I asked those guys who had come to pick us was if there is any Hindi movie theatre here. He said no. Noooo.. How can I stay without them :( I will lose my touch with them and become more emotionally dead :(  The other thing I terribly miss is a newspaper. I am so used to reading HT for the last 15-20 years. I can read other newspapers but something feels amiss when I do not read HT. So, the first thing I do in the morning is read the epaper. 

And today only, on Facebook, the official page of Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu posted these lines:
Rahul: Seriously, who are you Ri?
Riana: Your new best friend....

This is the scene where Ri gives Rahul a is so amazing..:( :(

Some pictures...


This is my favorite place..You can play Chess on the floor...

Or paint a bench..anyone can paint...

Or play the piano...

Or just sit around...

And find inner peace ;-)

 The title of the above picture is below: The Ties that Bind

A beautifully painted bench...

Share the road..

Johnson Street where home is located..

The Old Capitol Building..the flag at half mast to honor the victims of the Wisconsin gun attack..

Have to write about so many more things. Will try to update often when I get an Internet connection..

Dialogue of the Day:
यहाँ कोई caste waste नहीं पूछता..आपको अगर अपना काम आता हो, तो रास्ते बन ही जाते है..हाँ, आसानी से कुछ नहीं मिलता..कभी कभी अकेलेपन का...दुखी होने का एहसास होता है फिर भी मुझे लगता है की यही मेरी जगह है..मैंने खुश रहने का फैसला किया है

 - Sona, Luck By Chance.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Of First Post from the US

So long time no see..

I have reached Iowa City, US :) The journey was a story in itself. So many things happened but all is well now. It was a learning experience. This way only one learns no? Will write a detailed post soon and post some pics soon. I watched Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu on the flight and loved every bit of it again. Imran Khan is awesome in it. Till then take care :)

Dialogue of the Day:
"Udne ki chah to bahut thi lekin koshish karne ke pankh bahut kam."
 —  Rahul, Ek Main aur Ekk Tu