Monday, June 27, 2005

Biggest Apple in the World

I was in the city last week. I mean, I was in THE city. The Big Apple.

I was all prepared to hate it. I mean, I did hate it when I was there before. Last year, I had a harried tourist's view of it - and I hate to have a harried view of anything. I enjoy discovering new things everytime I go to the Walmart in my town, so naturally, I didn't like finding myself rushed from one place to another in New York.

My hosts were very sweet, I should say - school pal Vidya and her hubby Aravind transported me from Boston to NY in their own car and took me around, touring the major attractions in the weekend. But still, I was disconcerted, cheated as if I had been served a badly cooked meal. So I went back to India feeling disillusioned.

But this time, it was different. I had time. I had a week in fact. And I was alone. Yayyyyyyyyyyyy!!!!

I stayed as a house-guest at 72nd Street. My writer-pal Shelley had very kindly invited me to share her gorgeous Manhattan Apartment and it was a week I'd never forget in my life. It's really surprising how different, how utterly refreshing things are when you are prepared to look at them in leisure.

Central Park didn't feature in our schedule last time. I spent every afternoon there last month.

Times Square left me cold last year. This year, I could barely stand still - the very air smelled thrilling.

And SAJA 2005 in Columbia University was pure manna. I finally felt like I belonged somewhere.

New York is like slow poison. By the time it was sunday, the day I had to leave, I felt sick - physically sick. But like all good things in the world, I knew I had to go - and I knew I always could come back.

Would come back.

Friday, June 24, 2005

First drafts

At first glance, I admit, I do look like your basic brittle and screwed-up NRI woman you see scattered in the metros of the US. But I don't live in the city (ah, NY!). I don't even live in the suburbs. I'm not on H1B, I'm not in debt and I'm not even safely married to a silicon-valley resident.

What I am is on the wrong side of 25, right side of a writing career and the greatest procrastinator in the world.

I live in a beautiful little town in Pennsylvania. It has exactly 3 streets, one little park and about a million lush, green woods. I'm here for an year-long training in the editorial offices of a children's magazine and each day I wake up, not entirely believing that I'm here, in the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.

I'm writing this blog solely to keep tab on my progress in the next 12 months - which I'm hoping I would. Like any great procrastinator, I have a very poor memory - or rather the great ability to block out certain memories... if allowed, I'll happily spend my remaining time in blissful rut and never learn a thing outside my training.

And along the way, my O.B.l.o.g will also try to - if I actually write something - tabulate the woeful struggles faced by yours truly in trying to finish the great Indian novel.

Alright, put on your seat belt. And stay tuned. Yawn.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Today was my first day at work.

I am the new editorial intern at Highlights for Children, world's most-circulated children's magazine @ two million subscribers. My workplace is located in a beautiful place called Honesdale, in Pennsylvania. I have been here before - it was last year, when I won the fellowship and stayed here for a couple of days - and I am falling in love with the place again.

It was a little strange in the beginning, but I quickly understood about the duties... mostly administrative work, but also attending meetings with editors and doing research work for them.

I love my desk... and my own computer. Andy and George are in the same room as I, and Joelle and Judy in the next room. Everyone is being so helpful and kind... I think I have been blessed by God to have such nice people as my colleagues!

Friday, June 10, 2005

So here I am... in the US Of A!

I am inssssssssssssanely excited... to put it mildly. when I landed, I felt like kissing the floor of the airport. I swear, even the AIR here feels different.... oh wait, I know what it is... it smells of freeso, new opportunities and new horizons!

I am, of course, a little scared of the internship... will I pass muster? I do feel a tad overqualified for the gig... but I'm here for the experience, so I am happy!

Will I go back? As of now, I really don't know. I have a full year to make that decision.