Thursday, March 6, 2008

Foreign Discovery...

My parents have gone for a two week vacation to Italy and some parts of Europe. Yes, they haven’t taken me along and that’s got nothing to do with how I behaved on our Goa vacation where I went with my parents and granny. {NO I wasn’t staring open-mouthed at those girls playing volleyball. I was..I was yawning, yes yawning. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!}

(Actually, it wasn’t quite the most adventurous Goa vacation anyone can have – think about it, parents and granny, not the ideal recipe for Goa type fun. You can stop snickering NOW. I finally did have a good Goa holiday with friends near Diwali 2006.)

Anyway I digress. So my parents called me up a couple of days back from somewhere near Rome to gloat talk to me. They’re having a wonderful time there and are planning to go to Venice, see the leaning tower of pisa (they could’ve come to my place to see the leaning tower of pizza --- boxes but no, they had to go all the way there…hmmppff) and maybe even Paris (What? You can see Paris on most gossip channels almost every day. And our Bangalore Times gossip columnists seem to have a dedicated group of Paparazzi just for her)

(* too many digressions again today but I just have to tell you this. I’m never going to forgive a colleague of mine for wasting one and a half hours of my life that I’ll never get back. He gave me this absolutely lame ass movie called Paparazzi http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paparazzi_%28film%29 . His movie collection is quite good and so I kept myself fixed to my seat hoping against hope for an interesting plot twist. It is easily the most imbecilic movie I have ever seen. The two line plot is as follows – you’re going to thank me that I gave enough spoilers to prevent you from even thinking about watching it.

Bo is an upcoming movie star whose family is hounded by 4 paparazzi guys who cause an accident in which both his wife and kid get hurt. He then hunts down and kills 3 and frames the fourth one for the murders. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, that’s it. The movie ends.

Aaarrgghh if they have so much spare money to make a movie like this they should probably just give it to a charity. And the producer of this movie is Mel Gibson. )

Anyway, my parents encounters with different cultures has set me thinking whether I’m missing out on being a global citizen because of continuing to stay in India? Does the fact that I’m not even looking for options to go out of India mean that I will develop a closed outlook towards other cultures and languages and customs and lifestyles? Without interacting with and living in different conditions will I ever find out many intrinsic things about myself? I claim to be anti- racism and prejudice and extreme religionism, but maybe that’s just a theoretical take. Would I really ever know unless I work with people from other races and religions and lifestyles in pressure situations?

Hell I’ve just been out of the country once, to Canada and that too only for a few days (Yeah yeah, my parents say that I’ve been to Nepal when I was an infant but that doesn’t count, does it? Besides they don’t have any photos proving their claim. Mysterious circumstances don’t you think?).

Hmm what do you think? Is it important to have stayed in different countries to really know yourself?

4 comments:

raindrops said...

Knowing other cultures is very fascinating as it makes one discover how far u can push the self created boundaries.... But one needs a knack to do it consciously coz i have seen people who had been ignorant enough to go 'on site', crib about food and come back without a slightest change!!

Swapnil said...

Raindrops: Yes, when travelling you have to immerse yourself in the culture or there's no point. However, its a lot easier said than done because years and years of conditioning takes some time to go.

Pushing yourself consciously is a good idea.

lekhna said...

I knw this is a lil late...but I jus read the post..so here goes...you cant get to knw urself only becoz ur changing countries....coz u are the same isnt it?? Ha u cud say tht u can learn abt the country and get urself adapted to it..but thts a different thing..(or maybe Im sayin this coz i have stayed here for the past 26 years of my life and want to justify tht)

Swapnil said...

Lekhna: You could learn about your adaptibility. How you react to hostile/uncommon situations. how you deal with lonelinesss - do you revel in it, or mope around.

Thats the way I think you can learn about yourself - my moving out of your comfort zone - all the way to a new country. Thats my premise.