I was thinking for a few minutes on something clever to start this post with, but as you can see, I am unable to do so. But if you have been loitering here for the past few years, you will know that I am not prone to clever poetry or wordplay. Verbosity passes for wordplay here and so I will just go ahead and say what I want to say.
Right. So, most of you know I have been in Chennai for the past 6 months. Some of you (3 of u, really) have wondered why I am not blogging. Let’s just say that now I have a life. Actually no. I don’t. I am just joking with you. My laptop’s been under the weather and my PC is senile. No really. That’s the truth.
So I landed in Chennai in August and I spent the next month helping the parents prep for the sister’s marriage. Once that happened and the clamor for my plans started increasing in volume with more than one person suggesting that I abandon the US for India.
You see, when I landed, only my sister (amongst my family) & her (then) fiance knew that I had come back for good. So, a week after the wedding the parents were informed of my plans and rather surprisingly, they took it well. Of course the true circumstances and the happenings of the preceding 9 months were not divulged 100%, but luckily they chose to concentrate on the fact that I was now here rather than the circumstances behind the movie. Good for me, I guess.
And then the job hunt started. I had come back to India here without even a hint of a interview opportunity. But I knew I could do something. But the initial responses were rather disheartening with “unconventional resume” being the most common feedback. And about responses from the job-hunt sites, lesser said than better. I got a zillion interview calls for technical writing positions because of the phrase appearing ONCE on my resume with no supporting evidence. On top of it all, the hiring processes seemed slow. It was almost like the openings were really there, but no one was prepared to fill them.
Then a networking opportunity yielded fruit. Two personal interviews and two months after starting to search, I started working in mid November.
Professionally this has been a good 3 months. My commute is exactly 7 mins (door to door) and I have flexible timings. Title-wise, it’s a step down from my project manager position, but visibility wise it is still up there. But more importantly the possibilities for me are endless. While this might sound like one of the spiels of the brainwashed, I can assure you that this is not. After spending the better part of 2009 in an uncertain frame of mind, I have seen enough to know that I am in a good place right now.
Personally though, this has been challenging. The move to India has not been without its struggles mostly domestic in nature. After spending the majority of the past 14 years outside home (barring 2000-2001), it has been a challenge to alleviate the worries that my constantly worrying parents go through. The fact that I am still single gives them additional reasons, though if you ask me, my single status is mostly because of their own insistence/belief structures. That is something I am still coming to terms with. But I try to be patient and understanding. Sometimes I am firm and have to take a stand, but I mostly understand and try to work my way through. But it is still challenging.
Apart from that, I REALLY miss the gang in Jersey, New York and Delaware! I am handicapped by the lack of real life friends that I can just call and hang out with, without having to coordinate over hazaar emails. The friendships I have made in the past few months have been mostly online (you know who you are) and they are all in a fledgling state. My past (over the last year) experience with such friendships has left me a little cynical and so it is going to take some time before I can breathe easy about those. I know some of you think that I am obsessing a little too much about this, but if you had the kind of rocking real life friends I had, I am sure you will appreciate my feeling a little off color.
Apart from that, Chennai has been an awesome experience so far. I’ve been driving a Kinetic Honda borrowed from my cousins all over the place. It’s falling apart and yet keeps up with my need for speed. QFI keeps me occupied every other weekend, and the parents are back to their pre-2001 refrain of “enna quiz quiz nu alayara”. And if I can get to play a sport, anything, cricket, badminton or tennis, I’ll be able to fill up the little empty spaces in my weekly calendar.
So what next?
Now that I am gainfully employed, there are so many things I want to do again. 1. Get a life. 2. READ 3. Revive Blog
The first is a state of mind. I am slow getting there. The second is critical. I was once known as a voracious reader and for the most part of the past 2 years, mostly unread items on my feed reader caught my attention. I am working toward changing that. I have bought more than a few books and am slowly getting through them. Blog revival is happening.
Someone added an item 5 which I wont mention here, but my alternate item 5 would be that I should start taking photographs once again. But, I feel a little more self conscious in Chennai than I used to feel in New York (which was my previous muse, if I may) where every other person is a tourist with a point and shoot.
So that, in a not so small nutshell, has been my life of the past few months. In the future, now that I am back in India, I am going to watch a lot more cricket (just bought tickets for 3 CSK games) and hopefully lot more movies. And hopefully I will read a lot more too. All this means that there will regular posts here. Just you wait.