I landed in Seattle to begin my Fulbright Journey, in September 2017. I was accepted for Global Health program at the UoW, pronounced as U-dub, for some reasons I am yet to comprehend.
This country has never failed to amaze me every day. Now and then I have had my own versions of travel outside Nepal. I was and am an avid fan of Hollywood, FRIENDS used to be my favorite show on the TV, we tried to hum Guns n Roses in the neighborhood alley. But still, I was prepared for an unprecedented shock here. This is a post I have started to enlist my observations/ experiences that go beyond my “open mind”.
- United States is as heterogeneous as it can get. On top of that I have started to believe Seattle is the most versatile city in the world (not necessarily proved by facts). My first week in Seattle I had started to think I have never seen so many people of Indian and Chinese decent even during my stay in India and China.
2. Confusion with- “How are you?”
How are you for me is a polite question, the person asking me is concerned with how I am. Folks, this is strange, but here it is not a question, they might not be concerned with how you are, how your classes were progressing, nor how your family whereabouts. They are trying to be polite, get it!
And the reply- smile, nod and “How are you? “. Yes it is.
3. During classes: Take out your laptop, take notes on them – it is a difficult to digest normal.
Take out you lunches, start nibbling them it is not.
And wait, one class today crossed all the boundaries- Wine in the class! As a part of the potluck party, one of my fellow classmate decided to show up with wine. I took a glass, just to blend (wink).
I so much remembered my Nepali teacher back in school. I was caught “red handed ” for eating my favorite pastry in his class. I knew he was strict, would never dream of challenging his authority then, may be even today am equally scared with him, but my temptation for a bite, of the whipped cream on the top had over powered me.
Despite my highest level of discreteness, Bam! boy most of my worst childhood memories revolve around him, but this tops all!
4. So America is “the land of the free and the home of the brave.” So, It has the best practice of democracy. So, it has the best human rights. It teaches the world to respect to rights of women and rights of minority- So what is with the cheer leaders???
Have never got a chance to to visit one of the girls team playing in the field but I am wondering are there boy cheerleaders dancing, jumping and doing the crazy acrobatic skills in between the games?
It can be chilly and Seattle can be cold. So if you make the beautiful girls, wear scanty clothes jump and dance around in the fields, may be you need to have the boys do the same. Just to be even! a simple democratic thought on equity. At least during the women games!
5. Covering the cameras on the laptop
6. Latino paradox: recent Latino immigrants have better health outcomes than other US populations despite being in average poorer. However, the longer they live here, the worse they fare. This phenomenon is called the “Latino Paradox.: