THE POINT OF IT ALL – WHY DID WE MOVED TO INDIA?
Prashant: Animals have fought for mates since the beginning of time. Human history is full of examples of wars waged in the pursuit of beauty. In this great tradition, I’m following my wife half way around the world. My masterstroke has only one goal – to unashamedly use this in every marital argument from this point on. If you don’t want to move and your spouse does, this mind-numbingly brilliant strategy could serve you well.
Also, I had an opportunity to start a design company. I was smitten.
Meenal: Even after a blissful decade in Massachusetts, I still referred to Delhi as “home.” I was not ready to settle down in the US without at least attempting to live in India. I didn’t want to be a middle-aged naturalized American who longed to settle down in the motherland one day. This wasn’t due to any nationalistic sentiment. I just missed family – I missed being a part of people’s lives. By perfect accident, I got a great opportunity to work in India for a couple of years – so we took the plunge.
It may end up being a classic case of the “grass is greener on the other side” but at least I’ll know where I want “home” to be.
TIMING – WHY R2I NOW?
We had been in Massachusetts for over a decade and several close friends had moved from Boston. We could move to New York or San Francisco. Or, if we were serious about returning to India ‘sometime in our lives’, we could relocate to New Delhi as an experiment. We didn’t need to sell a home (We even said so on National Public Radio in 2010) and had no kids to worry about. We were at a point in our careers where we wanted to try something new. Prashant also had some unpleasant legacy business to close up in Bihar. Best of all, it made our marriage stronger since Prashant expects to get a lifetime of brownie points from Meenal for having given it a shot – successful or not.
The heart-to-heart between prashant and meenal
It wasn’t quite a heart-to-heart as much as it was nagging for years on end. At some point it seeps into your head that it matters to her, so you say – fine, lets try it. You watch a few movies where the lead does things with lots of uncertainty and comes out on top. You begin to feel that this could really be a good thing. Years from now, maybe they’ll make a movie about my adventure. But seriously, the question boiled down to something simple – what’s the worst that could happen if we don’t like it? And the answer is as simple – not much. If we like it, we’ll take it from there. If we don’t, we’ll try something else.
The talk with family
Hi Mum/Mum-in-law. Yes, we are moving in September as an experiment. No, we’re not buying a place. No, we’re not going to have kids anytime soon. No, you can’t visit us everyday. No, we won’t bring back pepper jack cheese for you. Ok, bye for now. Can we talk to dad/dad-in law?
Hi Dad/Dad-in-law. Yes, we’ve made up our minds. See you soon.
Others: The Airtel subscriber you are trying to reach is busy on another call. Please stay on the line or call again later [in that stupid Airtel accent].