Transplanting 101

Its been a while since i blogged .
and in the while that its been, i have moved to Arlington, Texas, to pursue my Masters in Architecture.

Transplanting 101 is the lesson that they "taught" us at the orientation. It was about the old soil and the new soil have to interact and reach a balance before it can take root. It made a lot of sense to us then. and still does.

My "experiences in America" so far have been interesting, to say it simply.
The first week ( half-week, rather - i got here on a Wednesday) passed in a daze - time spent with family and overcoming jet-lag.
The next two weeks - was spent in trying to fix a place to stay and getting used to the university.
Its been 3 weeks since school started.

The first thing i noticed about the US was - "there's mosaic at the Houston airport!"
The second (this was when i went to walmart, and bought household supplies) - everything's HUGE!
The third (this was on a sunny afternoon, under the shade of a tree in front of the library) - the squirrels are LARGE. and they don't have stripes !! ( they are very cute - they look like the classic chip-n-dale cartoons, when they are biting on something.)
The fourth - Man, the onions are like tennis balls, and the potatoes are like missiles!

I find it strange that one has to ask for water as a "drink" in a restaurant. I also find it strange that everyone is so friendly. ( I am not complaining - it just took me almost 2 weeks to get used to everyone smiling and nodding to me). I also find it funny that vegetarian food in fast food joints is so hard to find (Indian subs and McD's - yayy!)

What i do love about the country, is the thoroughness. They pay attention to the minutest detial( to the point that the vegetables in most stores are 'waxed' to make them look good). There is not a single "inaccessible" space that I have come across. They value time. Theirs and others. The level of automation is also mind-boggling. There are machines for everything. Systems for everything. Methods for everything. and, a sense of humo(u)r accompanies it all. Americans can laugh at themselves.

We have a lot to learn from this country. and I hope that we will.
If we are able to implement systems in the next 20 years in India, i will consider it a big victory.

Signing off, ttyl. :P


Sivaguru said...

once you get used to the 'system' you will find that it is the same everywhere - same McD, malls, ways of getting things done etc..

the standardization and scaling are aspects that we can do with in india - right from the road signs.

Jyotsna said...

standardization of road signs and enforcement of standards is something we can learn from here. like the standard ramps they have at every intersection between the footpath and the road, accessible lots and accessible everything. it is such a wonderful sight to see a person on a wheelchair getting around like everyone else, without being stared at or having to ask someone for help.

Malu said...

You sound like an American already Jyotsna !

Jyotsna said...

no, no, no MC. i am not an American.
while i see that there are so man "perfect" things, there are a lot of things that can be improved.i'm just saying that there i so much to learn from here. we will do well to have desis who do not come to India and litter at the very first chance they get, saying " if i don't do it here, where will I?".