Linkin Parks' Somewhere I Belong sums up my feelings quite well today. (My commentary in purple.)
When this began, -This move to India
I had nothing to say and -I kept my mouth shut and just watched and observed and learned
And I'd get lost in the nothingness inside of me -I was quite uncertain about a lot
(I was confused) Didn't realize it then, but yes I was definitely confused
And I let it all out to find/that I'm -both on this blog and in the pardesi community
Not the only person with these things in mind (inside of me) -there are tons of us realizing the same thins
But all the vacancy the words revealed -meaning things we expected turned out not to be true
Is the only real thing that I got left to feel.(nothing to lose)
Just stuck, hollow and alone -I am more alone living in this joint family than I've ever been
And the fault is my own, -yes it is. I am responsible for my own decisions. I don't regret coming here
And the fault is my own. but I wish I had been better prepared
----skipping the chorus
And I've got nothing to say -okay, not true I'm actually more vocal when I'm pissed
I can't believe I didn't fall right down on my face -true! moving here is like starting your childhood over
(I was confused)
Looking everywhere only to find That it's
Not the way I had imagined it all in my mind -India is definitely not what a gori is typically led to believe
(So what am I?)
What do I have but negativity? -That is about all that's left of my feelings for this city
'Cause I can't justify the way everyone is looking at me.(Nothing to lose) -truthfully I don't care about all the rude, mannerless people that stare and they can look at me however they want. I have a life that doesn't involve them or their feelings towards me. Must suck that they can't find anything better to do than stare.
Nothing to gain, hollow and alone
And the fault is my own,
And the fault is my own
I will never know
myself until I do this on my own -this is the one good thing that has come of this move and why I don't regret it. I have found parts of me that I needed to find. I've found a strength I didn't know I had and proved to myself just how stubborn and determined I can be. If you can imagine, I really didn't know I was stubborn before coming here. Now I own it like it's a diamond.
And I will never feel,
Anything else until my wounds are healed -that's the case with any scenario in life. You have to face it, deal with it, learn to keep living.
Now on to the complaints and grievances I have. These are all things I don't think anyone could ever fully be prepared for when coming here.
- Loud speakers - I swear little old ladies and young men should NOT be allowed to own these. If you can't hold a note please don't blast your singing to the entire neighborhood. It's not only rude but it's extremely irritating. Where I'm at someone in the neighborhood blasts a loud speaker at least twice a week. Sometimes its more than one person at a time. It's torture. Listen to this video to hear what I mean. There is no actual video, I didn't want to point the camera at this woman because that's rude. Keep the video bookmarked in case you have anyone you need to torture.
- Selfishness - I was not prepared at all for how selfish people here are. This country is supposed to be a unified, all people share a bond type of country. Well, let me assure you that no one shows consideration for anyone else when they are going through their daily life. They do whatever they want when they want without the slightest concern of how it will affect others. The selfishness in this city is much more extreme than anything I've ever experienced. I'm not the only one, plenty of other gori's experience the same thing so this isn't just an Amritsar phenomenon.(Yes, Americans can be selfish but you're going to have to trust me, this is so much different. There's virtually no common courtesy of any kind here.)
- Negativity - I know all people can be negative and I'm certainly no different. Before coming I was fully aware that people here make blatantly negative comments about weight, blemishes and anything they deem as different as if it's normal. I naively assumed that was not much different from the normal gossip and drama that goes on everywhere. I was wrong. After 14 months of constant bombardment with negativity about every tiny detail of life I can safely assure you that people here are much more negative than the worst Debbie Downer you know.
- You can't be nice here - It just doesn't work. In the west it's common for men to hold the door open for a woman if they see her heading that way. They don't have to know her. Women do the same when out with friends, one always gets the door. If they see a woman with a stroller they help her. It's basic human compassion. Here, if you try to be nice that way you get walked all over and taken advantage of to the extreme. Try holding a door here and see how many people will walk through it without even acknowledging your existence. It gets worse, if you open it for yourself and someone is anywhere near it they will try to push through before you can thus forcing you to hold the door for them like you're their slave. You give someone something and they come back asking for more like you're their newest supplier - only they want it for free. People just don't know how to react to kindness of any sort, they see it as a sign you want to be taken advantage of. This is difficult for a well trained southern woman to get used to and having to hold back all the niceness makes me feel like a rotten person.