Close your eyes. Take a deep breath and imagine your wardrobe and your personal belongings clustering themselves into 2 suitcases and a few boxes. At the same time, your friends and family, your favorite inanimate things like your car, your favorite corner or café in your city, your favorite seasons and weather – all moving away from you without the promise of a reunion. Now imagine yourself and your suitcases and boxes traveling through a void or vacuum suddenly gets transported into an alien world – smells different, feels colder and windier, new people, new way of speaking and communicating, new cafes and shops.
I don’t know about you but I felt very humble and very small. On one hand I had the satisfaction of taking this arduous task head-on and on the other hand, I felt like this puny person starting off from the Maslow’s hierarchy again in a very new context. I was indomitable, my life was stable, I knew exactly everything around me in my habitat.
The safest place for an animal is its natural habitat – nota zoo. So for me, moving to SF is like a red (ahem purple) carpet into a zoo – with new things to learn starting from eating, sleeping and even pooping.
I was talking to a friend this weekend about hitting a wall after coming to SF – these experiences probably will be very close to hitting a wall for a 32 year old or perhaps not. For me, I didn’t even have time or energy to analyze if or how far I have hit a wall. Oh! Did I forget to mention that I stopped smoking? And also the fact that I stopped listening to my favorite NWOBHM (NewWave of British heavy Metal), Electronic Dance Music and Dubstep – will soon continue. Did I tell you that I haven’t driven a car in last 3 months? Did I also tell you that I didn’t have a single personal philosophical conversation with anyone in the last 3 months? – Most of my conversations have been – how to do this or that? Back in my hometown ….., did you see the movie …., do you know that this club has ….., OMG .. it’s so beautiful/pretty/different!! ..
Seems like a difficult world? Not so 🙂 We often forget that disruption or change is painful but it always brings in something positive in one’s life. There are changes, which are for bad – for e.g. losing a limb or a dear one. But mine isn’t. I have come here for a reason and on my own volition. Every change – good or bad – makes you more adaptable to new conditions, stimulates you and makes you realize that the universe wants to interact with your being rather than ignoring you to oblivion.
I am doing really good in my job, I have built up tremendous patience in understanding people and learning to say or pronounce things to make myself understood, I have been meeting a lot of people (meeting people per unit time is on an absolute high), I have come to understand a lot of things about the food we consume, I now know a couple of new cocktails 🙂 and cuisines, I have seen Tahoe – thanks to my friend :),I have seen long winding and fantastic US roads, I helped my friend cook fresh Salmon from the beach, I made a special yogurt chicken dish for a friend and many more new and different experiences.
I would love to highlight the quitting smoking process. I meant to quit it soon but never had a real reason staring at me. Though I did keep a target of quitting by the end of the year when I moved. Looks like I achieved the same ahead of my target. I am on my 13th day of smoke free life. It was no doubt tough – not just the physical cravings that was painful but the process of trying to fill in the void of the time I spent with my cigarette was a new thing I had to deal with. That zone that my cigarette and I entered into now had to be recreated or replaced with a walk or watching a funny video clip on Youtube or reading a buzzfeed. I do like to text with a special someone but then the special someone is a person and it’s not fair to do that all the time.
Anyway, life gets tough at times but there is always a silver lining – you never have a playbook for that but like Bradley Cooper – if you try and seek for silver linings they do peak out from those dark clouds and say hi to you 🙂
Thanks to everyone around me for helping me in whatever possible way you could to make it a bit easier and less horrendous than the way it sounds in this post.
Read Previous Posts on San Francisco:
San Francisco – A New Beginning: https://ashokbania.wordpress.com/2013/08/10/brave-new-world/