Life in T20(20)

Last decade ended on a high note but it took a decade to write about it 🙂 And here we are into the first couple of months of 2020 and its already a roller coaster. (In case you missed, here check out my throwback of last decade)

2020 brought in a global pandemic (covid#19) and with it mayhem in the economy. Some of you would remember the last global recession of 2008-09 and this time its kind of 2009 on steroids. It took some time but we all get out of it stronger and wiser (ok that’s debatable).

So here we are in the middle of the global pandemic, and your’s truly is going with the flow of life in a totally different tangent. While the whole world is following “Stay Home, Stay Home”, I have traveled halfway across the globe to be in the land of dreams.

So much has unfolded in such a short period of time.

a. I almost missed my Visa appointment waiting for the documents. (BTW next appoint slot interestingly may not have ever happened, as US govt temporarily closed the consulate due to COVID situation).

b. An anxious trip to the US consulate in Chennai. I would have gone through hundreds of articles about visa interview stories on umpteen online forums and thousands of screenshot of the same articles on my WhatsApp by better half. Like really, never had that pressure since my first job interview. I owe it back to the community so one article pending on my interview experience.

c. A story of the loss/theft of my wife’s purse(with all original documents). But really liked the easy process of filing online FIR with TN police with payment gateway integration for a copy of the report. We need to seriously think of a solution for these multiple documents/cards. Aadhaar card should evolve as a single document (unique identifier) and the rest of the services should be just activated on it. I had to here deal with Transport deptt, Income tax, Banks, Voter ID etc all separately.

d. A crazy & hell of the night-long party just days before India locked down. Pictures below are not doing justice to the craziness of the day ;p

I can no other answer make, but, thanks, and thanks, and ever thanks… – William Shakespeare

e. Flew out of India. Interestingly, friends & family not only helped me with packing but ensured that they waited outside airport till we cleared security checks, affection yes, but more than that to ensure flights to the US are operational and are not canceled at the last minute. Immediately after we flew out, all International flights out of India were canceled.

f. 21-hour flight with all precautions, equipped and geared up with tons of sanitizers, masks and gloves. Landed at scantly populated Seattle airport (Smooth and quick immigration).

g. Here we are life packed in suitcases halfway across the globe and Tisya looks visibly tired.

h. And the next day lockdown is declared in the US. I think it would need a whole lengthy write-up on life in the US without SSN during the lockdown.

i. So here I am, traveled 20,000 KM across 4 timezones and spending time in the command module (Hotel room) while looking out for the moon from the window.

When you are far and away with yourself, just remember Michael Collins.

“In the 48 minutes of each orbit when he was out of radio contact with the Earth while Columbia passed around the far side of the Moon, the feeling he reported was not fear or loneliness, but rather “awareness, anticipation, satisfaction, confidence, almost exultation”.

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