A year in Philly – Part I

Its been a year living in Philadelphia, not just living in a new city all by myself but also a new country!

I came to the US, on hindsight and maybe at a subconscious level, to get a life. I was definitely apprehensive before the move – how will a bit of an introvert like me settle into a completely new city. However, it was exciting at the same time to think about scratching a life from start, leaving most of the baggage behind. My previous year in Gurgaon had been boring to say the least – and I knew a country change could do no more harm.

With quite high expectations, I started my life – quite panicky at the start. With huge support from the nearby family, especially Bhaiya and Bhabhi, I rented out an apartment, bought furniture and other necessities. I was not too concerned about my job, even though it demanded huge number of hours, my mind was fixated on having a LIFE. Till February, I was kinda panicking having made not much progress in achieving my sub-conscious objectives.

And then, I paused and thought of what I wanted to do – play/follow sports, go outdoors (hiking etc.), read/write, go to bars and meet new people. I found the online hiking group and that for some reason gave me a kick. At the same time, the Cricket world cup was underway and that demanded some attention for obvious reasons.

And then I finally went on a hike, and it was amazing. I met some really cool people – a set of people who I could connect with as they were of similar age and similar backgrounds (engineering/science majors). And for the first time after graduating from college, I connected with someone who I thought could be special. We were chatting together for the major part of the hike and ended up going out with her for a couple of months. Ahh.. the good times – going out for dinner…walks…broadway show, it was nice. With the kind of failed relationships in the past, I think I let her go … maybe should have tried harder in getting back together. I think I am too scared of being in a relationship – the same goes for the relationship I had with one of my colleagues in July-August-September. She was definitely interested in me but I was too stupid to actually start dating her. We had one amazing night that didn’t end up nicely, but still we were having a good time together. Alas – I distanced myself away from her for no particular reason and I now¬†kick myself all the time for doing that. I am sure God is thinking, “I give this fucker so many opportunities and he just blows each one off”.

Coming back to the year, the two months with Maria were great. I was working my ass off but still took out time to go out with her. Even with such a bad memory, I think I am going to remember the good times I had with her – it was definitely more special than the couple of relationships I had in college.

In May-June, Papa came to US and we went on a trip to Thousand Islands which was fun. I started my on-site role in Delaware that was much less taxing than the usual projects. It was a different experience and I tried to make the best use of it – started running at the Kelly Drive, did grocery shopping and hence a lot of cooking. Also bought the biggest time-sink, television in June.

It was also during this time that I started playing tennis, mostly with Nitin, and am I not glad for doing that – it has been and hopefully will remain among the top things to do to give me a high.