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NRI in America....  RSS feed

 
Ranch Hand
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Hi.

The one i m posting is just a thought provoking one..


ONE BEDROOM FLAT... AN INDIAN SOFTWARE ENGINEER'S LIFE...- A Bitter Reality

As the dream of most parents I had acquired a degree in Software Engineer
and joined a company based in USA, the land of braves and opportunity.
When I arrived in the USA, it was as if a dream had come true.
Here at last I was in the place where I want to be. I decided I would be
staying in this country for about Five years in which time I would have
earned enough money to settle down in India.

My father was a government employee and after his retirement, the only
asset he could acquire was a decent one bedroom flat.
I wanted to do some thing more than him. I started feeling homesick and
lonely as the time passed. I used to call home and speak to my parents
every week using cheap international phone cards. Two years passed, two
years of Burgers at McDonald's and pizzas and discos and 2 years watching
the foreign exchange rate getting happy whenever the Rupee value went down.

Finally I decided to get married. Told my parents that I have only 10 days
of holidays and everything must be done within these 10 days. I got my
ticket booked in the cheapest flight. Was jubilant and was actually
enjoying hopping for gifts for all my friends back home. If I miss anyone
then there will be talks. After reaching home I spent home one week going
through all the photographs of girls and as the time was getting shorter I
was forced to select one candidate.

In-laws told me, to my surprise, that I would have to get married in 2-3
days, as I will not get anymore holidays. After the marriage, it was time
to return to USA, after giving some money to my parents and telling the
neighbours to look after them, we returned to USA.

My wife enjoyed this country for about two months and then she started
feeling lonely. The frequency of calling India increased to twice in a week
sometimes 3 times a week. Our savings started diminishing. After two more
years we started to have kids. Two lovely kids, a boy and a girl, were
gifted to us by the almighty. Every time I spoke to my parents, they asked
me to come to India so that they can see their grand-children.
Every year I decide to go to India. But part work part monetary conditions
prevented it. Years went by and visiting India was a distant dream. Then
suddenly one day I got a message that my parents were seriously sick. I
tried but I couldn't get any holidays and thus could not go to India. The
next message I got was my parents had passed away and as there was no one
to do the last rights the society members had done whatever they could. I
was depressed. My parents had passed away without seeing their grand
children.

After couple more years passed away, much to my children's dislike and my
wife's joy we returned to India to settle down. I started to look for a
suitable property, but to my dismay my savings were short and the property
prices had gone up during all these years. I had to return to the USA.
My wife refused to come back with me and my children refused to stay in
India. My 2 children and I returned to USA after promising my wife
I would be back for good after two years.
Time passed by, my daughter decided to get married to an American and my
son was happy living in USA. I decided that had enough and wound-up every
thing and returned to India. I had just enough money to buy a decent 02
bedroom flat in a well-developed locality.
Now I am 60 years old and the only time I go out of the flat is for the
routine visit to the nearby temple. My faithful wife has also left me and
gone to the holy abode.

Sometimes I wondered was it worth all this? My father, even after staying
in India, had a house to his name and I too have the same nothing more.
I lost my parents and children for just ONE EXTRA BEDROOM.
Looking out from the window I see a lot of children dancing. This damned
cable TV has spoiled our new generation and these children are losing their
values and culture because of it. I get occasional cards from my children
asking I am alright. Well at least they remember me.
Now perhaps after I die it will be the neighbours again who will be
performing my last rights, God Bless them. But the question still remains
'was all this worth it?'

I am still searching for an answer................!!!
--- By an Indian SE who was in US.


Any comments from Indians working in USA?
 
Ranch Hand
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I'm not Indian, I'm not in the US but I have to say ... that guy really does see the glass as half empty doesn't he?

Did he have no happy moments in all those years?
Does he get no satisfaction that he has raised his children and they are happy and successful?
Does he not realise there are people in this work who work harder all their lives than he ever did and they're lucky to have ONE room, let alone an apartment with 2 bedrooms.

I could write a story about my life or my parent's life that would be very similar if I left out all the good bits. Not so long ago I was feeling rather sorry for myself because I'm currently in a situation I don't want to be in, I was focussing so hard on the problems and the things that were making me unhappy that I forgot to look and appreciate the things that made me happy and the things I take for granted that other's do not have.
 
Bartender
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Well... the guy has a point. Its true that he has not mentioned how happy he would have been when his children were born, or when he recieved his paycheck, or for other things. The gist of his writing revolves around the fact that he went around chasing money and lost some of his happiness in the process.

I think it has to do with prestige or something, to say " Hey my son/daughter is working in the USA as a software engineer. " Software engineers are in demand in the wedding market * shrugs *

Personally a dream job for me is one that makes me happy and keeps me happy.
 
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I am yet to see 60 year old Indian software engineer.Maximum age is 45 IMO.Fad of 'making career in IT' started in mid-to late 80s.
 
Ranch Hand
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> As the dream of most parents I had acquired a degree in Software Engineer
> and joined a company based in USA, the land of braves and opportunity.

Whose dream was it -- yours or your parents?

> Two years passed, two years of Burgers at McDonald's and pizzas

Two years of not learning how to cook!

Finally I decided to get married. Told my parents that I have only 10 days
of holidays and everything must be done within these 10 days.

:roll: It took me several months of test driving to choose a car!

>etc...etc...

Cue the violins, please...
 
Ranch Hand
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Rambo.. its not so bleak :-) I am kind of jumping between RIs and NRIs .. (!) and its not bad.. well sure you miss your parents, relatives and friends.. but then even if you are in India how often ( I like the UK way of pronouncing this word.. with the 't' :-) ) you go and meet your friends/ relatives etc. (After you are married and have kid(s) and working in s/w) And if you are not from Mumbai - Pune - Banglore - Hydrabad - Chennai - Noida then chances are, you are staying in a different city than your parents, and you keep in touch with them through phone, emails, sms etc. ..and yes sure you miss your culture.. the festivals, the music, the daily dose of local politics ( well miss is not the right word for the last one :-) ) etc etc. but then now the idiot box has a global reach..you can get indian tv , radio, newspapers, books, movies, albums etc. quite easily in US - UK - Europe (netflix has a good collection of bollywod movies.. I have also seen listing of some south Indian movies there ).. and Indian food is also very popular everywhere (In fact I heard people saying Chicken Tikka masala is UK's national dish !!).. moreover you can bring your parents to US on tourist visa.. they can stay with you for 6 months then you can go and visit them for 2-3 weeks.. etc. So its not that bad.. On the plus side you get to see new country, earn more money, get good work experience..
So in short .. don't pay attention to this tear jerker.. its painting only one side of the story and that too twisted..
 
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Contradicting terms:
60 year old SE!!
Cheapest calling cards? Calls to India cost 12-18 cents a minute even on VoIP. I am told by people that the rates were many times higher about 10-12 years ago.
Our savings started diminishing... when wife started making one extra call every week.
Even by using cheap calling cards, food etc, he could not buy a good house in India?

This does not sound like a real story. Although the facts/situations used are faced by most of immigrants in the US. But atleast he was not an Indian taxi driver or Mexican farm/construction worker or Chinese food deliveryman.

You gotta struggle wherever you are in the world. You win in some battles and loose in others.

Any comments from Indians working in USA?



Well, there are some winners...
The Microsoft Millionaires
and some are still struggling...
NO ROOF, No Roots, NO RIGHTS
 
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So, the guy doesn't save for retirement, gets married to someone without knowing them, has kids too early, has a hearty laugh when the economy in India tanks, doesn't teach his kids to appreciate their origins, doesn't take 10 days off for his parent's funeral and it's all America's fault? I say even if this story is true, he had it coming.
 
Jeff Albertson
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I don't believe the story is true, but it does paint an archetypal character that we may all recognise. Apart from the dysthymia, this note describes a person who takes no responsibility or control over the arc of his life. Things just happen to him. Fate. Instead of realizing he is the master of his destiny, he casts himself as the Destiny's slave.

This sounds exactly like one of my wife's uncles. He moved his family to Australia when his children were in their teens because he felt they had little future in their corrupt native society, where getting ahead meant nepotism or bribery. But he was never able to find a full-time job, partly because he refused to start over again (he had been an engineer). So ever since then he has been complaining about the hand of cards he's been dealt. He is separated from his wife and gets no respect from his two children. The only thing he seems to enjoy is hanging out in Neo-Nazi chat rooms (he's Rommel's biggest fan)...
 
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I had recd this email forward some 5 years back. Is it still circulating. Looks like no one has time to write a new story.
 
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Originally posted by Pradip Bhat:
I had recd this email forward some 5 years back. Is it still circulating. Looks like no one has time to write a new story.



May be it was to convince people who were coming back from US at that time due to IT bubble burst.
 
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