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Gems from my precious Gem

August 25, 2018

Dinnertime conversation:

Daughter asks Dad (amazed that he stayed away at a boarding school since 7th grade) if he had to cook food for himself.

Dad: No. They gave us food at the hostel.

Daughter: Were there a lot of different varieties for each meal.

Dad: Yes. They had a different menu each day of the week.

Daughter: [takes a dig at me] Well that’s a lot more than what we get these days.

Me: They get paid to cook, but I don’t.

Daughter: You get paid with LOVE

Me: Not really, I get paid with complaints

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Interesting Flight mates

May 26, 2018

I sat next to an interesting black dude on my way to India. He is a vegetarian and used to be an aero-space engineer that got laid off, is into real-estate and other things to make money. He is on his way to Manila where he bought some real-estate and wants to spend time there. He doesn’t know when he’ll be back. When I said that it’s great that he had the luxury to do that, he said, “Oh it’s easy. I own a night-club in Denver and it doesn’t need me to be there”. He is full of ideas – buy land, do farming – raise chickens, or dairy farming and grow his own food (and barter for the rest). He strongly believes that’s the way humans should evolve into. All this is good, and I kept nodding my head saying I couldn’t agree more.

And then he looks at the maps on the TV in front of him and says that the maps are all wrong. The continent sizes are all wrong (North + South america is the largest continent) and I thought he may be right. And then he says US is not the west, but the east and I said it depends on how you look at it since earth is round. And he says “Earth is not round, but flat. All the creation theories are hoax. Humans, animals and plants are meant to be how they are today. There is no such thing called evolution”. I asked him how he knew that. He goes, oh I am in touch with the creator (He calls him an AWE) and I know. He wants to create a spiritual temple. He doesn’t believe in religion since it’s man-made. He doesn’t believe humans are allowed to intermix their “seed”. They are meant to stay in their respective countries and not immigrate. Humans are making a mess of things by confusing all of these.

At this point, I promptly put my head-phones and turned to watching the movies effectively ending our conversation.

Nuggets of wisdom

May 19, 2018
  • The wealthier people get, the more they talk and obsess about money.
  • Never downplay the luck factor; a significant number of folks attain success purely by chance.
  • Hindsight is 20/20. Cliched but so very true.
  • This too shall pass (or so I hope).
  • When you need help, people will surprise you. Some surprises are pleasant, while some are not. People who you’d never thought about much will reach out and go out of their way to help while others who you’d thought about relying on will disappoint.
  • When life goes smoothly without any challenges, the smallest of issues start to look big. It’s okay to have failures and challenges in life. They make you stronger.

Next phase of life

May 17, 2018

Landed a job last week after going through a roller coaster ride of emotions ranging from high stress, despair, worry, exhaustion to relief and happiness. Considering the options I had, I probably would have landed a better job. But in order to pursue the other options, I’d have to decline the offer I have in hand (they weren’t going to wait). I didn’t have the strength to do that considering the precarious situation we put ourselves in. Going back to Mother India tomorrow to bring the kids along. Major love and missing each other happening between the parents and kids separated by continents for 2.5 months. We’ll be back to normal – bickering, yelling, talking back etc. within no time.

Husband is still in the process of job-hunting, and I give him free advice about not to be stressed now that one of us has a job. Renting a house literally costs an arm and a leg here. No chance of buying a house in the near future considering we’d have to sacrifice a few organs and body parts to pay the mortgage, property taxes etc. Since we’ve been living in our own house(s) for the past 20 years, this will be a new experience.

A toast to our journey into the next phase of life.

Back in the land of opportunity

April 14, 2018

And out of the frying pan into the fire we go. Time these days is measured in terms of

  1. Menstrual cycles, 2 weeks of normal functioning, followed by 2 weeks fraught with fatigue, irritability, moodiness, depression, hating self and generally being unbearable. Would I get that interview within the good 2 weeks??
  2. Cleaners who come in about once a month. They came twice already. Will I get a job before the next time cleaners come over? All I need is one job, really.
  3. Now that I stopped biting my nails, they need to be cut about once a month. Second time since I had to cut my nails after we came. I really need to get that job before the next time I cut my nails.
  4. Time is also measured in terms of the when I got my eyebrow threading done. Right before I came and today when it was long overdue (threading back home is way cheaper and nicer than here). Will I get one freaking job before my next……oh you get the gist.

Supermarket experiences

February 4, 2018

We live in the border of a most coveted neighborhood on one side and a predominantly muslim area on the other. I frequently go to a supermarket in the area where grocery prices are cheaper. On one of my trips to the store, I saw 2 women in a burka behind an aisle blatantly eating ice cream. After they were done they didn’t even bother buying anything before they stepped out of the store. It’s no wonder that people are treated very suspiciously in most stores this side of town. Before we step in the store, they tag the bags shut and only open them at checkout. I later realized it’s so you cannot steal stuff and hide. It used to offend me but not enough to go shop for the same stuff in the expensive side of town.

In another incident, I went to another supermarket to quickly grab a few things I needed. Got them and stood in a checkout line, behind an old lady with a driver and a truck load of stuff. There was a buy one get one free for something she bought and when the store clerk pointed it out, she went to get it. I left some space for her to come back again. A guy barges into that space and jumps the line to go in front of me. I politely got his attention and once he realized what he did, instead of apologizing he started attacking me rudely. “If you are next, stand here. Why would you stand there?” and so on. For a moment I was shocked, but immediately I saw “RED” (didn’t help that I was PMSing). Suffice to say I reacted and words were exchanged. But the result of that altercation is what surprised me the most. I immediately got ushered into the next counter where a clerk checked my stuff at jet speed. There was an instant shift from me being an unnoticed shopper to folks in the store being respectful towards me. Lesson learnt – “Assert yourself and you will be respected”. The clincher is when another dude does the same exact thing to this guy behind me and barges in before him in the line. Karma is a bitch.

Reflection/Resolution Time

January 8, 2018

2017 was an okayish year. It started off with us deciding to move back to US before august so kids can start 2017 academic year there. And husband puts the onus on me to do all of that, because of his business issues and wrapping up takes time. I knew I’d be a single parent with a job struggling to settle down in my job and helping my kids settle, and I absolutely didn’t want that. The selfish person that I am, we cancelled our plans.

Then came the girls function for which my parents spent a lot of money – I don’t know why I went ahead with it. It was fun in some ways, but a lot of effort. Overall I hated myself for going through with it which I did to fulfill other peoples expectations. And the funny part is they deny that they expected this of me and my parents <sigh>.

And since October, the push to move back started again. We decided it’s best for the kids education/exposure/future. I love change and I’m excited, but clueless as to where to start. Husband’s issues are much more complicated and we don’t know when he is able to wrap up and move. And I can see that I’ll be stuck in the single parent scenario again. Instead of actively starting the process, I’m just sitting here doing nothing.

I’m not great at making resolutions and sticking to them. But this is one resolution I want to make and stick to. When we move to US, we will proactively start making friends and socialize as a family. Our social life is severely lacking. As a family we are never in the mood to socialize and so have zero family friends. And it’s all our fault. It felt kind of sad that at times when we wanted to have someone over, we didn’t know who to call.