Saturday, April 24, 2010

Missing the Delta

What is it that makes a place a home?

I've been pondering this for the past 2 weeks, while I'm in India and very far away from my home outside of Chicago. What is it that I miss? I'm staying at a nice hotel, the food is good, and the people I'm working with during the day are very nice - they're glad I'm here to work with them they're more than happy to help me out when I need it (though I'm not comfortable asking for help, so don't do it as much as I should).

I just moved to a new hotel, to be closer to the office I'm working out of for the next 2 months. It's on the ocean and I have a great view. But... I'd rather be home. Would MUCH rather be home. This is nice for today, but the thought of staying several more weeks is... depressing.

I try to rationalize why I shouldn't miss home. Good opportunity for my career, nice hotel on the beach, room service, driver to take me around.... but I don't care. I think part of the problem is that I have trouble communicating with people here. Most Indians speak English, but it's British English, with different terms, and it's not their native language, so many people speak only broken British English. It's also hard that I don't know how things work over here. What I mean is that the way of life is different - there are lots of small, unorganized shops. They do have malls that are similar to what I'm used to in the States...sort of. I went to a mall last weekend and the shopkeepers are more aggressive and try to solicit people into their shops. It's not a place where you can walk around, window shopping, and relax. I also don't have my car that I can just jump in and drive where ever I want to go. I'm much more dependent on other people and I'm not comfortable with that.

But there's something else about home that I miss. It's intangible and difficult, if not impossible to describe. It's a mysterious, ancient magic that calms and comforts. It's something that's there, but not here. In science and math, the difference between two numbers is often called the delta.

I miss my delta.

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