6 inconspicuous things jealous people do !!

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You find these people everywhere. Just when you thought you had a great companion, colleague or a friend they get you with a teaspoon of a comment that hints of ‘jealousy’. No you cannot avoid them and you have to react to their comments with a feigned smile. But there is something I tell you about the curious case of ‘uncomfortable with your success’ people; seldom do they realise that people understand what they are trying to do. Sometimes they do it unknowingly that is when you have to take these people just as an entertainment value. Read on if you are around one of the below:

 

  1. They will subtly ‘one-up’ your story- Whether it is the new deal you got at the restaurant or the course you are taking at the university, these people will always have something better to add to that. It is beyond them to just listen to someone else’s good story, they always find a way to add their own.
  2. They don’t acknowledge you- If you have put a happy story on facebook, it is very rare that J people will not notice it. Probably they have seen it 100 times and googled your story twice. But they will behave as if they have not had the time to see your update.
  3. Disqualify your achievement-  People find excuses to settle with their own failures. Some of them belittle your achievement by saying ‘I have seen so many people doing that, it hasn’t worked for them’ !!! And boy they can give you real statistics proving that.
  4. They make you feel guilty- So think you take up a special course at that community college leaving your kid behind, the ‘J’ kinds will always mention the trade off. They will tell you how inacceptable it is for them to leave their kid around for an upgrade. They will always make you feel bad about how you are missing out on social life by just following your heart and taking up that course.
  5. They overcompensate-This is when they know that they are jealous and they try to camouflage it by being overly happy about your achievement.
  6. Give you backhanded compliments-So you bought this dress online and your friend mentions ‘Isn’t it funny that this dress looks good on you but when put it on..I look tacky”. You got the point!

Immigrant Faux Pas

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You have seen it; you have done it; I have seen it; I have done it; you have someone mention it and I have mentioned it. Yes! You are right, the awkward things we all have been a part of knowingly and unknowingly. As immigrants or friends to immigrants we all have been at that awkward position when we do not know what is normal and what is not? I wish someone had told me about these, when I was a fresh immigrant in Canada. Read on:

  1. Kissing is normal here but staring is not.
  2. Women do feed their babies in a public place, it’s considered normal and acceptable.
  3. Sex is still a taboo.
  4. Even if you do not know anyone, you still have to dress up well; it does speak volumes about your personality.
  5. It is not normal to burp and not say ‘excuse me’.
  6. Please do not make an accent and roll your ‘rrrrrr’.Anyone can make out you are faking it.
  7. Yes, people do notice the color of your teeth.
  8. The ‘F’ and ‘S’ word is not tolerable.
  9. Retirement homes are not because children don’t care about their parents; it’s just a way of life at that age here.
  10. Staying healthy is not a choice but a necessity as there is no help; to each his own.
  11. In summers it’s not called ‘skimpily dressed’, it’s called ‘appropriately dressed’.
  12. It is rude to ask salary package (as against to it being completely normal In India).
  13. It is OK to be honked at and honk in a situation of careless driving.
  14. Phrase ‘Good for you’ is not impolite. There is no hidden meaning in it.
  15. Gifts are only for special occasions.
  16. Perfumes are a problem sometimes.
  17. You have to ask before trying to hold a baby or pat a pet.
  18. Keeping and marking a calendar is not a pretense but is a requirement.
  19. It is standard to ask for what you deserve.
  20. ‘Name dropping’ is not needed.

Above all:

IT’S OK TO SAY YOU ARE AN IMMIGRANT, NEW TO THIS COUNTRY AND NEED HELP

Daily Prompt: History of Language

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Third time is a charm!

There is something mysterious about number 3. It is just enough by the borderline.For example if one is on a diet and has one cookie, he/she thinks ‘it was nice to try it’;the second time they have it ‘I cant have just one, I need to have just one more’;the third time they eat it, they say ‘OMG this is indulgence and enough’.So, number 3 is just enough.

English stackexchange says that it has an origin from the writings of Shakespeare from ‘The merry wives of Windsor’ 1602.Google  can date back its origin to English Law or even in some searches to 13th century.The truth is not one answer can tell where this phrase comes from?. Its like knowing that lake meets a river, a river meets the ocean and who does ocean meet?No one knows.There are many proverbial stories about where did this phrase come from? I do not want to delve into that as its a jungle out there. That is why language in itself is so intriguing.It does not have a certain origin.We can just build references to its usage but the origin itself is unknown.Just like not one picture can tell you that how an egg became a butterfly likewise no one instance can tell us who coined this phrase.There can be endless possibilities that a primitive man or even an ape might have tried to make fire by rubbing two pieces of stone and would have failed two times and would be successful in making fire the third time.Or it may also be concurred that this phrase is a part of an ‘oral tradition’ passed on from times immemorial from one generation to other.

I feel that three is just the certainty of sorts, where one and two cannot decide, generally third can arrive at conformity. It is possible that scientists feel that three is easy to remember whether we see it or hear it thrice.May be its property of being odd makes it indisputable.

Some food for thought.Why do we always say ‘I am the odd one out’? Why is it always about ‘Location location location’;Why is it we use ‘Try Try and try’? Why is there a Holy Trinity?;Why does Canada’s national flag has maple leaf with 3 sides?Why does USA’s flag has three colors red blue and white?

Whatever it is, its mysterious and nothing in this life is certain, so is language.

An open letter to foreign women travelling alone to India

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In the wake of a recent incident that had a British female tourist jump of a window of a hotel room fearing a rape and fracturing a leg, India is facing a lot of wrath of being highly unsafe for women tourists. Data from Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry shows that in first three months of the year the number of women tourist have dropped by 35% . As an Indian journalist having travelled in India extensive and yet safe, I get saddened at stories of rapes and loots on women tourist. But, I find that even female tourists are to be blamed as they have some unrealistic expectations from the country. The following are a few points you would thank me for, so read on.

  1. Build your network beforehand– In your own country if you know a colleague, an acquaintance, a friend or anyone you know is an Indian just talk to them beforehand and ask them to let their families or trusted friends know that you are travelling to India and ask them to introduce you through skype or a call. Exchange phone numbers of their families or women friends.
  2. Location! – Travel websites like www.makemytrip.comwww.yatra.comwww.travelguru.com may be helpful in connecting you to good hotels. Also, state hotels that are usually a safe choice for example MP Tourism and Rajasthan Tourism offer some great hotels at affordable prices.
  3. Booking your travel– Indian domestic airways and Indian Railways are your best bets. If you plan to travel by rail, always book your travel at www.irctc.co.in 3-4 months in advance as it is a very busy website. If money allows travel by AC three Tier and AC two Tier as most families travel in that class. Befriend a family with kids and women. They will provide you with security you need in your rail journey, you may also sit with them until 9 pm just before its time to hit the sack in IST inside the rail, if it’s an overnight journey. Do not book yourself in first class as it allows only 2 people in a coupe. If you want to travel by road make sure it is through the hotel and make sure it’s the hotel’s private taxi service. Most tourist destinations have a railway path, if not a domestic airway connectivity.
  4. First things first– If your High Commission suggests you to register your itinerary with the diplomacy, then do so, no questions asked. Many of us abide by the rule of our own countries but why do we have to flout rules when we go out of our country? Do yourself a great favor by keeping the local Indian Police station in loop.
  5. When in Rome, be on your own – We are often on our own when in our countries doing painting, renovating etc. As far as deals and restaurants are concerned Google is our best friend. Then, why suddenly in places like India do we listen to the flimflammers? There is no deal that an auto rickshaw driver, taxi driver or a local tourist guide will give you, if it sounds too good to be true then you are risking your security.
  6. Cheap Deals are a passé’ – There are no cheap countries left in the world. A decent hotel will cost you average $60-$70 USD per night. Reputed hotels like Radisson and the likes of Marriott may average at $119 USD per night but the experience is safer and peaceful. Any hotel charging you $20-$50 USD per night may be a bummer.
  7.  Communicate– When checking-in to a hotel, let the manager know that you already registered yourself with the local police station and they have your itinerary. Also, include you wouldn’t require a room service and will not entertain knocks and if not abided by, just call 100 (Indian version of 911) even if at the end it turns out to be a false alarm.
  8. Night life – Night life is not a safe time to explore India. Period.
  9. Do not get overwhelmed– You will find taxi driver, coolies, beggars hounding you like vultures most of the places in India, do not show your frustration as these moments make you look for a back door. There is no place a local guide will show you that you haven’t seen in your recce.
  10. Listen to your gut– As women we all have been gifted with a sixth sense that helps us when there are doubts hovering our mind. Respect your gut no matter how luring a deal or an argument by anyone seems and go by your instincts.

P.S- Indian experience is humbling and exhilarating at the same time. It is all that is touted to be colorful, hospitable, enlightening, empowering, traditional and tranquilizing. Just do your research and plan ahead, you will love India.