Thursday, January 13, 2011

Items On Sale

‘Grab the best deal on thanksgiving…’. Thanksgiving passed by. Here comes another sale season of Christmas. Just when Santa is done with his shopping of gifts on sale, shopping malls start alluring customers with yet another attractive sales offer for new year. Well, things are going to be quite for some time – I thought. Long live consumerism, TV commercials are flooded with post holiday season sales. Then winter sale, spring sale, summer sale ….Sale season does not seem to end in USA.
During post holiday sale in first week of New Year, I could not control my curiosity to visit the shopping mall. I was surprised to see a full parking lot. People leave no opportunity to garb the best deal of the sale season. In other words, they keep shopping through out the year. Sometimes, I wonder, I would be most foolish person on earth if I buy some stuff with its original price, because, the item might retain its original price tag for just few days. Rest of the time it will be sold with the SALE price.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

One winter morning, I headed for office and something unusual drew my attention. Most the cars in the car parking had their wind shield wipers up. Although the view drew my attention, my mind didn’t find it significant enough to think about. May be company is providing free car wash to all the cars in the garage, may be its wiper up day in the company, or may be…who cares.
After the office time, I was excited to see my first snowfall in US. It was a great feeling until I reached my car and found it buried behind snow. I started removing the snow. At this point it crossed me that somebody mentioning, the car roof top, lights and wind shield glass should be snow free before you hit the road. I managed to clear good amount of snow but my hands were numb. I jumped inside the car and thought that rest of the snow from the windshield could be removed by the wiper. Turned on the wiper, nothing happened. Checked again, same result. When I came out to find what had happened to the wiper, just then I realized why everybody kept their wipers up. I learned it a hard way. It took around 10-15 mins in freezing cold before I could make the wiper work again.
The very next day, I changed my browser welcome page to
Weather forecast plays a significant role in New England, if not in whole USA. Almost accurate prediction of day’s weather determines how the day will shape up. I am writing this from my home today late at night, because I don’t need to be worried about waking up early tomorrow. predicts a snow storm tomorrow.
It reminds me the scene in Swedesh, where the head of the village asks Sahrukh :”…what do you do in Amrica? …”
Sahrukh : “….well… I work in NASA…”
Vilagers: “..what des it manufacture?....”
Sahrukh: “..Hmm..well…”
His Aunt interrupts and to show off the her association with Sahrukh, promptly replies: “..Satellite helps us to do weather, where it would rain, when it would rain etc..”.
One of the wise man among villagers(sarcastically): “..well, Sahdev (a native villager) can also predict weather, by looking at the sky..He does not go to Amrica for that..”. he then calls Sahdev.
Sahdev comes and staring at the sky: “ Sky is clear..Its not gonna rain for 2 days …”

Long live

2010: the year that was

2010 passes by and leaves behind lots of good memories to cherish and bad memories to forget. It was one full year outside India and just passed by in the blink of the eye.

Shaken by the brutal winter, First half of the year was quite and dull. On top of that my back injury and frequent visits to doctor and physical therapist was making the life miserable, needless to say the hole in pocket by the co-pays and medical bills.

Having just arrived in USA a month back, I was still coping up with initial formalities like getting driver’s license, searching for a home, Social for my wife, above all….settling down. During this time I was dependent on my friend Swami for office commutation and household shopping. I am really grateful to him for helping me out in those tough initial days. We had a great time together until he had to relocate to NJ. Meanwhile I purchased my first car here and it brought a sense of mobility in our life. The excitement surpassed the cruelty of weather and we hit the road to make an exciting trip to my cousin’s place in New Jersey. This trip was special for me as I was meeting my class mate and close friend, Arunava after almost six years out of college and this time as my bor-in-law. We had a great time, got a glimpse of big apple night life and enjoyed it thoroughly.

So far so good, but life is not a box of chocolates. Life brought some bad news from our family back in India. We were very depressed for not able to be there in that bad time. My wife also developed some health problem and our frequent visits to doctors resumed once again. At one hand she was living with excruciating pain of ear infection, her state of mind on the other was bothering me a lot. Strong dose of Antibiotics and painkillers made her weak. As our life was going through same turbulences, spring brought some fresh change in the air. I took a break and thought of exploring the great city of Boston. We made frequent trips to Boston and some beautiful places nearby, like Rhodes Island, Vermont, NH etc. In May, we went out for yet another ride to New Jersey. My friend with his family joined us in New Jersey and we went to DC. The trip was great but exhausting.
I saw my wing mate Anand and had a good dinner together. It was a great get together after so many years. My museum freak wife was heartbroken for not able to see enough of DC Museums and vowed to come back again.
Overnight camping in Connecticut with friends was a very refreshing experience. Food, drink, poker and lots of fun. It was a typical Bengali style Picnic with lots of eatables, drinks and cards. Chicken, mutton, eggs, sweets – you name it and we had them all. Only Fish didn’t find its place in the platter.
We welcomed summer with a bang with a trip to Vegas and Grand Canyon. We were the group of 3 couples flew down to Vegas from other three corners of the country. Raju flew from Seattle, Rudy manna from Orlando and I from Boston. The experience in Vegas can’t be explained here as what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas :-). Leave behind all your tensions, worries and simply grab a beer, a cigarette and relax in the land of gambling. Never ending nickel sounds of slot machines and lively environment elevates the mood and takes to a different world of rich and famous. The place tests one's capability to control the temptation of...well, quite a few things. :-) . In one line, the experience was very rejuvenating for me and my wife. Mona had a childhood dream of visiting Grand Canyon and she was more excited for canyon than Vegas. We had a terrific ride to canyon. With the steroids of Raju paul’s energy and my wife’s excitement, it was a perfect trip. In the first glance, the magnanimous, gigantic view of canyon left an indelible impression and forced me to think how a small tiny Colorado River can cut through such a rocky land of Arizona to make it visible even from space. This is simply wow!!!
Rest of the summer passed by very quickly and in winter when I retrospect, it seems that it is mercy of winter to throw a tiny patch of summer upon mankind. Already colorful vegetation got some more streaks of color as the fall arrived. The trip to Loon Mountain with Apurva and his wife Ananya in a bright fall morning was similar to a trip to fairy land. In my child hood sometimes I used to paint such scenic beauty and wonder if they really existed. Fall in New England does not leave any doubts.
Rest of the year was quite good and brought some good news into our life. My wife's uncle recovered miraculously from Cancer. Meanwhile my wife got her work permit and started looking for job opportunities. Life didn’t disappoint her. She cracked one of the best jobs that she could think off. I am very happy for her and am relieved from the thought that she left her good job in India just to accompany me. I might not have done this sacrifice if I were in her shoes.
More or less 2010 was a mix bag for us. We sailed through the turbulences together and enjoyed the life in all possible ways.
Looking forward to a great year ahead.
Happy new year 2011.