Monday, January 09, 2017

Another Year

Vasu Reddy from Chicago

We are already running thru another new year.  2017 is here and we are sleep walking thru the days quickly.  We are still far away from home, ten thousand miles away and journey home is still very arduous and the same as it was more than a generation and half ago.  Nothing has changed with the nation, its reception and of course my people.  No one has changed.  We all just got a lot wiser.

The music lovers of India will remember the song by Pankaj Udhas.  “Chitti Aaayee Hai” from the film “Naam” fro 1986.  Nostalgia and love for your home never fades. Listen to the song here, its still heart warming and heart touching.  Those were the days when you really wrote and waited for a letter to come back.  In living almost all of my life away from home, nothing depicts the love for home, for your people and your own everything from your birth place; irrespective of how many years you have been away.  It was the time when the mobile. Internet and instant communications were linked to star trek.

Today we are constantly or Skype or Facetime, text and instant messaging, emailing and calling, and use every device available to be in touch.  Hearing a distant voice or watching a screen to see the person on the other side is a part of normalcy.  We still can’t touch and feel, but hear and share.  A thousand new ways to be in touch, really still far away.  I have no complaints about what we have done in just a few years to communicate and be in touch, simply the missing factor is touch and feel and smell of home.

The journey and the time and process have not changed much.  It takes as long as it was 30 years ago, with millions more traveling from here to home.  Don’t ask me where here is, as where ever you are there are us.  In reality we are a lot more crowded today on the road, in the bus, in the train, in the air port, on the plane, actually everywhere.  It will be a fairly long column if we discuss the etiquette, so we simply focus on another year and the same distance from home.

The minute we start to make the trip home, we are impatient, and impertinent.  Really don’t think of what surrounds us when at home.  The standing in line and waiting disappears as soon as we get into boarding area at the airport.  We become a local without delay, but with an attitude of an NRI in India.  Strange as it might sound the accent that really is not there and the impatience that should never be a part of life, appear out of no where.

What really matters is reaching the destination I would point out, but not the arduous journey.  Many trips to the same destination but still each one is as precious as it was the first.  Here is another year and I would imagine it will be the same as last one, home still far away and still wonderful.  Happy New Year everyone, make this one a bit easier than the last.

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