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Old 27th February 2013, 19:29   #181
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Default Re: Returning to India

I think I was between 18 and 19 when I moved out of my dad's place conclusively ~ lock, stock, and barrel.
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Old 28th February 2013, 03:11   #182
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Originally Posted by amitoj View Post
This is my general observation based on the people I have interacted with over the past some years. And it could certainly be wrong. I've noticed that folks who have stayed away from home earlier in their lives (stayed in hostels or worked in places far away from their native places) have an easier time settling down in a foreign land than those who have never stayed away from their homes. There will probably be a few exceptions but i'd be surprised if they are large enough in number to qualify more as a norm than exception.
No, I will disagree here. Came to USA at the age of 27 in 2011 before that I never stayed away from home for schooling, college or work. I was all by myself when I came here initially but got adjusted to this new place very quickly. Being in California and after getting a car, started to enjoy my new freedom that I never got in India .

And I don't want to go back to India. Life is good here (it's my personal opinion).

-- Jose
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Old 28th February 2013, 04:40   #183
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Originally Posted by amitoj View Post
This is my general observation based on the people I have interacted with over the past some years. And it could certainly be wrong. I've noticed that folks who have stayed away from home earlier in their lives (stayed in hostels or worked in places far away from their native places) have an easier time settling down in a foreign land than those who have never stayed away from their homes. There will probably be a few exceptions but i'd be surprised if they are large enough in number to qualify more as a norm than exception.
I tend to agree with your argument. I was in the comfort zone of my home in Mumbai until I graduated in 2001. But I flew out and built my own nest in early 2003 in Pune. That said, I was always in close contact with my folks with frequent visits to Mumbai.

I also believe the added responsibility of a spouse and a kid(s) can be a bit taxing when it comes to settling in a non-native land, although there are always going to be exceptions who are better equipped at dealing with this.
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Old 28th March 2013, 09:12   #184
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Default Re: Returning to India

Got the following as an email forward from a friend. Gotta admit I have had similar conversations with some NRI friends.

Quote:
Typical conversation with a visiting NRI from the USA

Self: Hi! Home for a holiday? Are you going back…..or…?

NRI: Yes…yes…I am going back as soon as possible.

Self: But…your parents are here. There are also many new malls now where you can get everything you want. It’s even cheaper than in the US, Europe or Canada or Australia.

NRI: Yes…..things are real cheap here in India….products are very good……the malls are also very good…..restaurants are excellent. But….the roads and the traffic are so terrible….I can’t wait to get back.

Self: Yes…I agree….but….that’s only one relatively small factor….surely you can adjust and put up with that. The situation would improve once the Metro is operational.

NRI: No…No. Why should I put up with the traffic and the crowds and the garbage? Why should I adjust? It’s impossible.

Self: OK….lets change the subject. How are your parents? I heard your mother had some health problem. Is she ok now?

NRI: Oh… yeah…she’s ok! Doctors have given her some medicines. Dad is there to take care of her.

Self: But he is old ……how will he manage? Besides, both will be missing all of you so much. Loneliness is terrible. That itself can lead to so many diseases.

NRI: He’ll manage. He has to adjust, I guess.

Self: OK…..how is life in America? What do you eat at home?. The usual Idlis, Dosas Upma etc. that you like so much? Indian food, particularly South Indian food is considered the healthiest! It contains all essential nutrients in a very balanced way.

NRI: Well…no…not really. We normally eat cereals for breakfast….straight from boxes. I carry sandwiches for lunch or eat some salad at the cafeteria (everything is so expensive). For dinner we take out some food stored in the freezer and heat it in the microwave….and that’s it. Its difficult to cook every day, you know….so we cook once a week and store it in the freezer.

Self: But that’s not healthy. Also, eating packaged & processed food every day could lead to many diseases. We read about this every day.

NRI: Oh…. no problem. We adjust. We sometimes eat meat to make up for the proteins.

Self: But you are traditionally a vegetarian, I thought. Vegetarianism is considered a better option for general health, animal rights and for spiritual reasons….. and many westerners are now becoming vegetarians. So…why have you switched to non-veg?

NRI: Well…its no big deal really. One has to adjust.

Self: It must be cold where you live…..you have lived all your life in warm South India.

NRI: Yes…its terribly cold out there with months of snow….but we have central heating. We don’t go out much….but its...ok. We learn to adjust.

Self: How is your wife? Does she also work? What about the children?

NRI: Of course…! She has to work! We can’t manage with one person working. We have mortgages to pay. We both leave our home at 8 am and are back at 6 pm. We have only one child who comes from school and stays alone till we come home. He watches TV and eats something from the freezer. Some of our friends are even opting not to have any children….so that they could save all the trouble. God!…..Children are such a responsibility!

Self: Yes…that they certainly are.

NRI: Children are also very expensive. Their clothes, food, eating out, vacations….buying new stuff every few months just to keep up with their peers in school….its terrible!

Self: So how do you manage? What about the culture? The sexual freedom and so on? Aren’t you worried about these adverse influences on your children?

NRI: No one bothers about all that. Its part of life. If my son adopts that lifestyle…that’s ok with me. We need to adjust and get on with life.

Self: I understand that due to the recession and its aftermath there is a subtle antagonism towards foreigners and immigrants. Is that true?

NRI: Well….yeah…sometimes you do sense a mild discrimination and bigotry. Recently in fact, someone shouted out an abuse at my wife when she was out shopping. Someone at school called out ‘Paki go home’ to my son. But these things are rare…. because…. by and large, we keep to ourselves. We rarely interact with the whites or the other immigrants. Even they prefer to keep to themselves. We have our own small Indian groups with whom we socialize. So…such racist incidents are kept to the minimum. We adjust and learn to manage.

Self : What about entertainment? Do you get Indian TV channels and programs? Do you eat out often?

NRI: Indian channels are usually pay channels and very expensive. So…we don’t have them. We manage with the local english programs. We do see Indian movies sometimes. They are expensive and you need to drive for an hour to get to the cinema hall. So….we don’t do it very often. Eating out is very expensive. Indian food is even more expensive.

Self: Where do you live in the US and do you own a house?

NRI: We live in a locality with lot of Hispanics, Koreans and Chinese. We have bought a house on mortgage recently. Its not very big actually. Just a two bedroom twin home of about 1000 sq ft. Unfortunately prices have dropped recently. But we like it.

Self: But you have a fairly big home in India……...

NRI: Yes……but…..what have I got in India? Nothing!

Self: What do you do if one of you is ill? Do any neighbors help?

NRI: Actually….one of my neighbors is a Korean man who lives with his girlfriend. On the other side are two….er…..too. We have to help ourselves most of the time. Our Indian friends live some distance away…..and no one will help if we are ill. Everyone is so busy with their own work.

Self: What sort of work do you do in the US? Is it some highly specialized cutting edge work……. for which you cannot get a job in India?

NRI: Actually…..I am a software engineer. I had a good job till recently, but I got laid off and had a terrible three months. I have recently been called for an interview for a temporary contract position. I may get it. Things are looking good…yeah…..I am ok!

Self: But you would be able to get a very good…highly paying job in India. India’s booming with a very high rate of growth!

NRI: Yes…I know. I’ll probably get a much better salary than what I get in the US…. and maybe I’ll be able to save much more too….but…it’s so difficult to adjust to the traffic and the crowds in India…you know. Its impossible to come back.

Self: OK then….. goodbye and good luck!

(I think to myself as I say goodbye)……Yeah.. right! You can adjust to packaged food and poor health, small dark wooden home, heavy mortgages, terrible weather conditions, lack of family, lonely parents, bad cultural environment, racial abuse, loss of dignity & self-respect, job insecurity and even your basic principles……but you can’t adjust to simple traffic conditions in India! How incongruous can you get!
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Old 28th March 2013, 09:47   #185
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Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
Got the following as an email forward from a friend. Gotta admit I have had similar conversations with some NRI friends.
This is absolutely true and to be frank i did not like the lifestyle here. Keeping upto ourselves and our family and occasionally meeting our indian friends & families even though they dont have the qualities you look in a true friend.People here bond with fellow indian families even though one doesnt gel with the other, only because they will be much more alone if they didnt have them.
From my experience, every thing is fake here from food to smile on the face of people.
We adjust here to so many things, that we ourselves dont know that we can adjust to such an environment.

The apt saying here is "Grass is always greener on the other side"

That is the reason, i plan to go back to my country after living and earning for a couple of years after my master's, till the point where i can repay my hefty educational loans.

I will look after my parents come what may as i understood that money is not everything in life.

A simple smile of satisfaction on the face of our loved ones, be it parents or wife or children or friends is much more worthy than a million bucks we earn without them and a zillion trillion times more worthy than the fake smiles we receive here everyday.

Last edited by Koenigsegg220 : 28th March 2013 at 09:54.
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Old 28th March 2013, 11:30   #186
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Default Re: Returning to India

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Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
Got the following as an email forward from a friend. Gotta admit I have had similar conversations with some NRI friends.
Thanks for sharing this Samu san. Add to all the woes listed in that email, one has to drive him/herself everyday to work and everywhere else. Cab's are pretty expensive in the US. At least here in India, we have auto's and however irritating they may be, they do take us from point A to point B. I guess public transport is not very common except in big states like New York, San Francisco etc.

When i visited the US (Lubbock, Tx) on business back in 2000, my colleagues and I shared a rental car. We had to adjust our schedules keeping in mind we had only one car. Public transport was non existent and cabs were rare (airport cabs) and obscenely expensive.
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Old 29th March 2013, 00:26   #187
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Default Re: Returning to India

That's nothing! You guys should see how people actually live in US (according to North Koreans anyway):





I have to go fix my tent now
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Old 29th March 2013, 05:16   #188
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Default Re: Returning to India

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Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
Got the following as an email forward from a friend. Gotta admit I have had similar conversations with some NRI friends.
You may have had a tamed down version of this but this conversation looks so made up . Pretty similar to another popular forward that talks about "all this for an extra bedroom".
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Old 29th March 2013, 08:55   #189
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You may have had a tamed down version of this but this conversation looks so made up .
Obviously it is made up... by adding all the typical complaints about India and living conditions in US. If you consider it honestly, it does make you think about the choices one has made.

I have lived 9 years in US and 9 years in India after that. There are strong pros and cons on both sides. But one thing is clear, which ever country you pick, absorb it fully, live a full life. Don't live in an island. That means, don't live like an Indian in US or live like an American in India. If you are not willing to melt in the American melting pot, go back to India. If you can't stand living in India, don't stay and complain forever.
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Old 29th March 2013, 12:45   #190
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Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
There are strong pros and cons on both sides. But one thing is clear, which ever country you pick, absorb it fully, live a full life. Don't live in an island. That means, don't live like an Indian in US or live like an American in India. If you are not willing to melt in the American melting pot, go back to India. If you can't stand living in India, don't stay and complain forever.
Samuraisan, this is absolutely the best advice one can give on situations of living abroad/returning to India. Adjust to local way of living, mix with the culture in India & abroad and most of all enjoy the advantages each place offers to the max.
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Old 29th March 2013, 13:42   #191
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Originally Posted by Koenigsegg220 View Post
This is absolutely true and to be frank i did not like the lifestyle here. Keeping upto ourselves and our family and occasionally meeting our indian friends & families even though they dont have the qualities you look in a true friend.People here bond with fellow indian families even though one doesnt gel with the other, only because they will be much more alone if they didnt have them.
From my experience, every thing is fake here from food to smile on the face of people.
We adjust here to so many things, that we ourselves dont know that we can adjust to such an environment.

I beg to differ with some of the points you mentioned. I might sound rude but believe me, I mean well.

Be true - have you ever tried socializing with Americans? there's nothing stopping you! Why do you restrict yourselves to politicizing Indians whom you do not like?

How's the food fake? Please try some authentic American food outside the chain fast food restaurants. I am sure you shall not be disappointed.

As 'samurai' has mentioned in the post above - 'which ever country you pick, absorb it fully, live a full life' - that's the key!
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Old 29th March 2013, 16:10   #192
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Default Re: Returning to India

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Obviously it is made up... by adding all the typical complaints about India and living conditions in US. If you consider it honestly, it does make you think about the choices one has made.

I have lived 9 years in US and 9 years in India after that. There are strong pros and cons on both sides. But one thing is clear, which ever country you pick, absorb it fully, live a full life. Don't live in an island. That means, don't live like an Indian in US or live like an American in India. If you are not willing to melt in the American melting pot, go back to India. If you can't stand living in India, don't stay and complain forever.
Yes, when I read through the conversation, it did feel a bit clichéd – a bit like those NRI movies

But what you mentioned is an excellent point. If money is the only reason to live abroad, and you are adamant not to merge into the life there, it’s best to make a move back home.

On a related note, when I was in Kerala in January, met one of my old colleague who moved back to India a few years back, and now working in Bangalore. During our conversation, he asked me “why are you still staying there, why you don’t find a job here and move back. You know, we have McDonalds, Pizza Hut, and all other international brands available here now”. And I answered “I go to McDonalds only if there is absolutely no other option, and I have not stepped into Pizza hut for years. Give me some better reasons.”
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