Next stop, insanity

Monday, May 29, 2006

Adaptation prohibited

I am an Indian living in the USA. Whenever we meet a bunch of Indians at a party or a gathering, the topic inevitably turns to talking about advantages and disadvantages of living in the US. It's amazing to see that almost everybody I meet hates to live in the US. If they had a chance, they would go and live in India. But, alas, they constrained by uncontrollable forces. I never understand what it is that's really stopping them.

When my turn comes to speak, I generally simply say "I am quite adapted to this country. I can see myself settling down in the US." But people looks at me like, "And..?" Basically, they want to me say, "But someday I will return to the loving bosom of mother India." But I won't say it. At the moment I don't have any plans to move out of the US. Most people find it hard to believe that an Indian can live happily in the US. They start to look uncomfortable. They reiterate what's bad about US and why India is a better place to live. If I don't budge even then, they label me as "americanized," an anathema for any Indian, and/or a traitor who disrespects his motherland.

Most of the times, I give up and say, "But I do miss my family back in India. I can't get my relatives here, can I?". It's kind of a lie because I do visit my relatives often, almost as often as other relatives, who live in big cities, visit them. But by saying so I am admitted back into the clan. Order in the world would be restored.

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