In a Foreign Country

It is very hard to feel at ease in a foreign land. One feels totally alienated, everything from the sky, earth, plants, places, people seem to cry out that “You! You don’t belong here!” There is also that feeling of being torn between cultures. One even feels guilty when one starts appreciating the foreign land; there is probably a fear of ‘what if I forget my roots?’

Amidst all this and more one year passed by. I still didn’t feel as a part of that country, but towards the end of the school year the typical symptoms started to emerge. I got Senioritis – what could be worse? Still I hoped in vain that I’ll forget all this when I return. Then came the day of days. I took one step at a time, there were so many of them. I wasn’t scared now because I could feel the music from the piano. I felt the music carried me as I descended each step. Lost to sensations around me and mesmerized by the music, I felt I was walking on air. I felt an utmost sense of bliss and my face seemed to beam from ear to ear. I finally reached the bottom of the stage, the walk down the steps had felt like the passage of an era but this – this was it!

Another set of steps, and reached the top of the stage, they called my name and I got my high school diploma with which my misery vanished into thin air. I felt whole, I had become a part of that nation and I knew I was now a citizen of both the east and the west.

I would probably love both countries equally for the rest of my life. This realization gave me a sense of peace and made me feel immense happiness for being a part of that country, if only for a short period of time.