Come On In…It’s a Beautiful World

By Anjali Grover

An unparalleled assortment of cultures, a unique blend of values and an unmatched fusion of people from countries across the globe – I have been in an expat in this foreign land for a few years now and I treasure my association with this country for its diversity.

My circle of friends, neighbors, colleagues and acquaintances here come from different walks of life, from territories near and far. They symbolize customs and traditions, they epitomize beliefs and values, but more than anything they exemplify life at the most fundamental level- as one of its kind individuals- distinctively unique and inimitably special.

It is beautiful to connect with them at this elementary level – as personalities beyond nationality and religion, gender and age, accent and color.

But what happens when amidst all variety and diversity, you suddenly meet someone who has belittling views on people based on the passports they hold and the nationalities they represent? Well, it hurts….

Recently I met someone with narrow and utterly suffocating views about people based on their nationalities. He spoke with an air around him, constantly forgetting the thin-line that separates stereotyping and racism. What a disaster, I thought, a loss to the organization he works for and an embarrassment for the profession he represents.

Felt sorry for him, wished him wisdom and luck,  and walked out of the meeting and back into the world I have known- it is bright, global and multi-cultural. It has respect for where people come from, it values for what they bring to the table in terms of experiences and skills and it has the maturity to see everyone with equality.

And I am sure I am not the only one has witnessed this cohesion and inclusion, most of us have. I am not the only one who has had the opportunity to work with some genuine and authentic people who value every person for being unique and special in his own ways, most of us have had it. And I am not the only feels honored and gratified for this exposure with diversity, most of us do.

Yes, there are issues and challenges, host of them! but not so grave that we start boxing and labeling people – and that too in a place like this, where respect for diversity and appreciation of differences is what defines the country.

It’s a beautiful world and if you believe in it too, then come on in…

Jinxed

I come from a country known across the globe for its much admired rich culture and traditions, and also for the not so appreciated superstitious beliefs.

As a kid, I grew up amidst friends, relatives and acquaintances who did hold superstitious beliefs that varied across a wide array of practices. Back then, my ‘beyond-age wisdom’ and logic would debate, argue and try to find answers to things like the role of lemons and chilies hanging at the main doors of the shops, the relationship between us stopping and waiting for someone else to pass when a black cat would cross our path, connection between the twitching of an eye and bad omen, the sense behind hooting owls and death, the rationale behind itchy palms indicating loss or gain of money, bird poop meaning good luck, and the list goes on.

 Unlike my initial belief that ‘it happens only in India’, I have come to realize that these beliefs are omnipresent.

Speaking about self, being an educated and well informed individual, I had safely and proudly kept myself away from these illogical beliefs over the years. I thought it was best to avoid these thoughts as much as possible especially with kids around who would sneeze as soon as you are ready to step out of the house(sneezing is a bad omen). Not to forget, we have had a lot of cats in the vicinity, and if one is superstitious, the colour doesn’t really matter.

But they say change is the way of life, be it age, phase or beliefs.

Off-lately and strangely enough, I too was bitten by the superstition bug.

I may conveniently blame it on the ‘everlasting impressions of childhood’ but I must admit that my head no more retaliates, debates, argues or tries to find answers.

It is a change difficult to comprehend, but yes, it seems rationale to say that I recently got jinxed when I wrote my article about ‘MY SHARE OF GREEN.’ It seems to be under a dry spell and for now some lucky gem-stone or some quick tricks to ward of the evil will be a good start. Fingers crossed !!

My Share of Green…

By Anjali Grover

The grace of Abayas and Hijabs, the royal looks of Kanduras, the distinct fragrance of Oud, the serene spirit in the holy month of Ramadan, waking up to the soothing sound of Aazaan that fills my mornings with divinity … I am in love with this place.

I have lived in this place for quite a few years now, and life as an expat has been blissfully beautiful. The country has been kind and what seemed to be a far-fetched dream once is now the way of life. It is no more foreign, it is home.

It has been more than a decade and a half that I first came here. The place was as magnanimous then as it is today. In fact, it has added more to its portfolio. From posh lifestyle, luxury cars, and comfortable living spaces to a sense of everyday safety & security, gorgeous landscapes, and extensive infrastructure. You name it and this country has it. Everything so lucrative, it leaves you spellbound every time you see it.

For me personally, the true identity of a country lies in its people, without who the best of the high-rises shall lose their charm. It’s their warm demeanor, which makes a place loved and cherished. It’s their simplicity that creates unforgettable bonds. It’s their values and rich culture that creates an aura of serenity. It’s their openness to diversity that offers a mature outlook to welcome both similarities and differences. This place reflects it all, word by word.

Not to say it’s all rosy. Like any other place, life does offer its own set of challenges here too and the grass on the other side does appear to be greener. But deep down my heart, I am happy and thankful for my share of green and I hope it remains.

 

Finally here…

By Anjali Grover

Writing has always been a passion, however, must admit that it took me quite a while in my journey from  ‘pen & paper’ to the ‘keyboard.’ But change is the way of life and it is indeed beautiful.

So excited and looking forward to connecting and sharing my view of the world and of course, to know how it looks from your end.

Will be back shortly. Until then-Imagine, Believe and Dream on…

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑