I was traveling in the US from the 18th of Feb to the 5th of March. With NZ travels still fresh in my mind, I was least excited about this travel. Simply because it was not a vacation. However, one cannot deny the fact that this is one of the most very interesting times to be in the US. A lot has been happening. Of course, there was the oscars but also there is a political drama unfolding almost every day.
With the entry ban on seven muslim countries, rumours of H1 visa revival and discussions over construction of a wall at the border taking centre stage, I entered the US prepared to face the unknown. But, frankly, the immigration process was much smoother than those in the previous years. The people as always, were friendly and welcoming. That was assuring. But what truly makes me feel arrived in the US is the food. A burrito bowl that I had at JFK airport cheered me up almost immediately.
I shall limit this post to the details of my travel and return back with another one summarising my conversations with the locals, the NRIs and my own personal thoughts about the current political situation in the country. Currently, all those thoughts are very erratic and requires a lot of organising.
I spent a week in Carmel, Indiana. Despite being mid winter, Carmel weather was like of a pleasant spring day. Even though it was good news for me because that meant I did not have to drive in the snow, it was also disturbing to see this shift in weather. While I was there, a warmest winter day was recorded in the city.
Colorado Springs makes me feel at home. I had lived there for an year, back in 2004 and later have made several trips to there over the last 12 years. I am familiar with the names of the road and avenues ; shops and restaurants. Hence, returning to springs is always a delight. Both in Carmel and Springs, I met up with some friends from work. Some who are still with the company, some who have quit. Called all others whom I could not personally meet. Despite all the nostalgia that is associated with the place itself, it is very clear to me that human relationships are the ones that make a place special to me. So, I always take this opportunity to meet the friends I have made in this country over the years. Those catch-up’s make my travel more meaningful.
Like always, I also enjoy a night drive to the Garden of the Gods. Sitting on a rock next to the Balancing rock, watching the entire city lit, I always have one of the most satisfying experiences in the city.
A College ice hockey match at the world arena was a great moment to experience the energy of both, the players and the spectators. Colorado tigers won the match and we witnessed a rift between the two teams in the end. That I understand is very common. I also learnt that many enjoy college sports over national level because they are more intense and competitive.
Another thing I always enjoy doing in the US, is driving. I drove to Cincinnati from Carmel and to Golden from Colorado Springs; each two hour long drives fulfilled my desire to drive on the beautiful interstate system in the country.
A trip to the US is never complete without a visit to my favourite restaurants and shops. That means a lot of shopping. Even though I tried to control my urge to buy things, I ended up bringing back quiet a big luggage. A transit via Paris, meant more baked items and chocolates joining the collection.
Two week seemed appropriate to catch up with some friends, visit a few good restaurants and places and then head back before one begins to feel home sick.