Aint Your

   Coming to America

Nov 2nd

I remember as a kid, whenever I caught sight of airplanes flying high in the majestic blue sky scattered with white wisp of clouds. I often wondered what it felt like to be in it and to be a part of the industry where I could call the blue skies my second home. Soon this wonder turned into an obsession. I made up my mind that I wanted to be a flight attendant when I grew up. The Indian media is to be hugely blamed for feeding into this frenzy by portraying flight attendants as living high on success (no pun intended). Talk about elegance personified as they strut along with their cute little suitcases and their sharp attire. Often I reflect back and wonder what made me obsess about this industry so much and I think I have the answer. I am from a very small town in the foot hills of the Himalayas where everything moves at a snail's pace. While the rest of the world lives in a 4G era, my town still uses the dial up internet, to add to the woe, agitation resulting from a demand for a separate state and anti social elements has made the very little progress come to a halt indefinitely making everything regress from bad to worse. Maybe the fact that I felt that my town was a big full stop for me which came in my way of moving forward, could be the answer to my obsession with flying and getting very far away because I am a person who wants to run, who wants to fly and is willing to fall which comes along with it, in my stride but I do not want to stop.

When it comes to having the most obnoxious and senseless policy, India take the cake as far as recruiting air crew is concerned. Why does anyone need a 20/20 vision to say coffee or tea? Isn't it enough that one look pretty, sees enough to distinguish vegetarian food from non vegetarian(God knows your job is on the line if you ever feed meat to a Brahmin) and has enough cool to handle the annoying alcoholic who keeps you up with his incessant demand for drinks which is guzzled instantly. Unfortunately India isn't America where one can make a big hue and cry about discrimination. We are talking about a county where dowry, female infanticide and caste system is still prevalent. What can I say, "It happens only in India."

Anyways with my dream of flying coming to a screeching halt because of my vision not meeting up to their nonsense standard-my obsession with getting away from my hometown came in the answer of cruise ships, though I went a notch down, here I would be sailing instead of flying. I loved the fact that discrimination didn't exist in their dictionary-they took them all big, colored, physically challenged and so on. Thus began my journey to America with big dreams of adventure, big money and better life. I am yet to witness the latter two.

My no frill story may not have life changing situations, every hero in books or movies, comes face to face with, which compels him to make choices which are not easy to live by but which will definitely make him win our heart and ultimately get him the applause and the love he deserves. But the fact that I was able to get over the hurdle of being born in a crappy place where life is often crippled by lack of basic necessities such as running water and reliable source of electricity, made worse by agitation and to be able to rise above it and be able to fulfill my dreams at least partially (no matter how small the dream was) and furthermore continue to strive to make a better life for myself by continuing my education , while working full time, makes me feel worthy of being able to look in the mirror and reassure myself with these words by Christopher Reeves. "A hero is an ordinary individual who finds strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles."