As the dream of most parents I had acquired a degree in software Engineer
and joined a company based in USA the land of braves and opportunity.
When I arrived in the USA, it was as if a dream had come true. Here at last
I was in the place where I want to be. I decided I would be staying in this
country for about Five years in which time I would have earned enough money
to settle down in India.
My father was a government employee and after his retirement, the only asset
he could acquire was a decent one bedroom flat. I wanted to do some thing
more than him.
I started feeling home sick and lonely as the time passed. I used to call
home and speak to my parents every week using cheap international phone
cards. Two years passed, two years of Burgers at Macdonald's and pizzas and
discos and 2 years watching the foreign exchange rate getting happy whenever
the Rupee value went down.
Finally I decided to get married. Told my parents that I have only 10 days
of holidays and everything must be done within these 10 days. I got my
ticket booked in the cheapest flight. Was jubilant and was actually enjoying
shopping for gifts for all my friends back home. If I miss anyone then there
will be talks. After reaching home I spent home one week going through all
the photographs of girls and as the time was getting shorter I was forced to
select one candidate. In-laws told me, to my surprise, that I would have to
get married in 2-3 days, as I will not get anymore holidays. After the
marriage, it was time to return to USA, after giving some money to my
parents and telling the neighbours to look after them, we returned to USA.
My wife enjoyed this country for about two months and then she started
feeling lonely. The frequency of calling India increased to twice in a week
sometimes 3 times a week. Our savings started diminishing. After two more
years we started to have kids. Two lovely kids, a boy and a girl, were
gifted to us by the almighty.
Every time I spoke to my parents, they asked me to come to India so that
they can see their grand-children. Every year I decide to go to India. But
part work part monetary conditions prevented it. Years went by and visiting
India was a distant dream. Then suddenly one day I got a message that my
parents were seriously sick. I tried but I couldn't get any holidays and
thus could not go to India. The next message I got was my parents were
passed away and as there was no one to do the last rights the society
members had done whatever they could. I was depressed. My parents were
passed away without seeing their grand children.
After couple more years passed away, much to my children's dislike and my
wife's joy we returned to India to settle down. I started to look for a
suitable property, but to my dismay my savings were short and the property
prices had gone up during all these years. I had to return to the USA.
My wife refused to come back with me and my children refused to stay in
India. My children and myself returned to USA after promising my wife would
be back for good after two years.Time passed by, My daughter decided to get
married to a American and my son was happy living in USA. I decided that I
had enough and wound-up every thing and returned to India. I had just enough
money to buy a decent two bed room flat in a well developed locality.
am 60 years old and the only time I go out of the flat is for the routine
visit to the nearby temple. My faithful wife has also left me and gone to
the holy abode.
Sometimes I wondered, Was it worth all this? My father, even after staying
in India, had a house to his name and I too have the same nothing more. I
lost my parents and children for just ONE EXTRA BEDROOM.
Looking out from the window I see a lot of children dancing. This damned
cable TV has spoiled our new generation and these children are losing their
values and culture because of it. I get occasional cards from my children
asking I am alright. Well at least they remember me. Now perhaps after I die
it will be the neighbours again who will be performing my last rights, God
But the question still remains 'Was all this worth it?'
I am still searching for an answer.
Sent by Mr.Chandra Reddy