Aug 11, 2006

Copy-paste :: An NRI Engineer's story

Really, really touching one .. This is a cut and paste from a thread posted at

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 wanted 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 homesick 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 McDonald'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 an was actually enjoying shopping for gifts for all
my relatives and 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 soon and they cannot wait for long.

After the marriage, it was time to return to USA, after giving some
money to my parents and telling the neighbors to look after them, we (I
was lucky and managed to get the visa of my wife early) returned to USA.
My wife enjoyed this country for about two months and then she
feeling lonely. The frequency of calling India increased to twice in a
week sometimes 3 times a week as she also has to call her parents. 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
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 was stuck
in the procedures 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 rites the society members had
done whatever they could. I was depressed. My parents 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 !
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 2 children and I returned to USA after promising my
wife I would be back for good after two years.

Time passed by, my daughter decided to get married to an American and my
son was happy living in USA. I decided that enough is enough and
wound-up every thing and returned to India. I had just enough money to
buy a decent Two-be droom flat in a well-developed locality.

Now I am 60 years old and the only time I go out of the flat is for the
routine visit to the nearby place of worship. 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!
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 the!
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 neighbors again who will be
performing my last rites, God Bless them. But the question still remains
'was all this worth it? I am still searching for an

There's no need to become defensive when your opinions are challenged.
Instead, let the challenges help you to further refine and clarify
own thinking.

-- Somehow, very much touching..Dont really know if it is fact or fiction..But somehow, the way it has been described really touched me..



Dew Drops said...

i hav got this as a fwd too. somehow i dont think the monetory benefits are that bad. the emotional downtrend cud b worse.

don't worry.i hav heard Oracle don't send ppl abroad for too long ;)))))

Scoot said...

Ajith,thanks for putting this up.Whether the story is fact or fiction?It's something that happens to most of us.While we are pursuing everyone else's challenges put up on us,including our parents,life passes us by.
What we should learn from this is so clear.And somehow after reading this,my heart feels like it's taken flight with wings

Anonymous said...

This is just fiction. Came across this stuff several years back. Lot of technical flaws exist in this writeup to be true anyways.

Just for starters, whoever wrote this did not know that before you pick who your wife is going to be, you cant ask for a visa for her - at least not a US visa.

Anyways, there are enough people going back to India these days, but of course they are going back to make a career and fortune in India. Those who think I will go back after making "enough" -- really never return because "money is never enough".

Anonymous said...

Ajit buddy,after ur long take on the sabarimala episode, this sure comes as a difference.

But you have to understand that everybody's story need not be the same :)

Lol @dewd's comments.

SK said...


nice reading the post..
may be this is true or fictional but there are more NRIs happier than the gentlemen in this sad story.

NRI Investment Consultant

PNA said...

whether reality or fiction, this is just one side...the other side also exists...with family and relations respect and love not those his and byes...

well we get to make our future...never get too caught up in making money or a culture if we cannot handle it...


PNA said...

Truth or fiction..this just one side of things...the other side exists otherwise nothing balances it out...
anyway...we can make or break our lives. a little foresight and tact will save anybody from such phases ...


hope and love said...

hmmm.. sad..
iv read that once in a while u must imagine that u r on ur death bed.. and u r looking back at ur life..
then u realize what is silly and what is significant in ur life..

Ajith Prasad Balakrishnan said...

@Dew drops -- Forget long term..We dont have even good chance of short term trips.

@maya -- Yeah..while running behind the challenges, life passes on very quickly.

@ullas -- Yes..Lot of technical flaws exist in the story..but the main message is not just in trying to settle abroad and losing out in life..It is about missing many dear things while running behind challenges in life..

@Santosh -- Could be..But there is a flip side too. Depends on how we balance our priorities.

@ash -- Yeah..A little foresight can save us from such situations. Otherside too exists..but will it really balance out ?

@hope and love -- Yeah..when we look back, we rue about missed things..Depends..ultimately it is a tradeoff.

Flyaway Mind said...

a sad story.. a probable one too.. warns us to slow down & have a reality check once in a while... life is a a delicate balancing act, where we have to be shrewd enough to win..

Ajith Prasad Balakrishnan said...

@flyaway mind -- Yeah..We got to slow down a bit and strike a balance in our life.