Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Oh Internet

Another basic of travelling internationally- internet! Internet, its supply and it relation to the word “adventure”. We associate the word adventure with an elixir-like quality. As if contact with kind of quality would fix every shortcoming of a trip. We derive this kind of sense from literature, forgetting that literature itself is a form of romance. Thus hard work itself becomes a form of romance and we tell ourselves that no matter what form of hardship an adventure would bring with it, we would happily take it as it comes. At least I did.

Wrong. At least I was. Recognizing my dramatism, I say I already miss my damn internet in prodigal supply. Oh American hedonism!

I had become so used to the idea of using internet for finding and even logging everything that I de—emphasized the possibility that I would probably not have wifi readily available everywhere. Now the house I am in does not have internet ready. All my contacts are listed in Google Docs. So basically, I have a whole day unplanned and undirected with no contacts get in touch with in order to plan something. Luckily I have a slightly-less glamorous plan B. I have one contact’s name enlisted whom I’ll call, as well as a wonderful lady I met who invited me to her care and hospitality. Else, I’ll call a cab somehow and see what the day has to bring for me! 

The best thing about not having internet was forced efficiency.

Yes, that’s what I said- the lack of internet forced me to get efficient. I had woken up quite early today by jetlag and the hum of the azaan and immediately felt paralyzed at the thought of being at a new house at a new land without Couchsurfing and InterNations, Google Search and LonelyPlanet. But in order to overcome the lack of resources I was forced to plan with the limited resources I had available and did so with a pen, paper and a phone with barely two phone numbers.

The day turned out quite well.

It was interesting to get on a cab having very little language skills. This destination was relatively easy, all I had to do was tell the driver “Citimall” and he got at it like it was an honor. Okay, maybe I’m, exaggerating a little bit. Nevertheless it’s not false that most people were more boastful about the big malls than they were about cultural and historical landmarks. At least that is what it seemed like to me. The experience I had till then suggested the people cared more about development at that point. A “good” degree (I met at least seven proud Engineering graduates and students), a reputed job. Still, not many wanted to flee abroad to Amriika necessarily, something I used to find common in Bangladesh and India when I used to visit.

I went to Citimall to meet with Sudheesh, an Indian expat from Singapore I met at a professional expat website. While waiting for him, I strolled around the mall and was amused, for lack of a better word, to find abaya-clad women huddled infront of Victoria’s Secret and Pepe Jeans. I’m sorry, but the juxtaposition was amusing. While I was lost in my own thoughts and getting weird stares from people around  (I still am not sure why. ‘Cause I’m a foreigner?)  Sudheesh found me and we went into one of the most invigorating conversations I ever had. It started off with realizing the state of Israel and the terms Palestine and Zionism, and drifted deeper into theology, history, psychology and even careers. I won’t bore you with the details of it, although know that you’re missing out, particularly his interesting take on the three religions. He was a believer of miracles, and he attributed it to the power of a receptive mind, rather than the “power of God” in the general terms we tend to hear from everywhere.

He was also nice enough to buy me amazing cheesecake and a converter for my laptop charger.



  1. abaya-clad women huddled infront of Victoria’s Secret and Pepe Jeans. I’m sorry, but the juxtaposition was amusing
    Hah, you just reminded me of a personal anecdote.
    Keep posting, please! I am loving the posts!
    Good luck! (:

    1. Tell me your anecdote! Thanks for liking, definitely you'll see more

  2. The other day at Sunday Bazaar (it's a local bazaar that attracts people from all income brackets, including foreigners), a lot of burqa clad women were huddled around a stall of undergarments. They kept pointing at the hanging bright bras and panties.
    I cannot describe exactly why it was so amusing, but man I had a hard time suppressing the chuckles.