“Will she remember her babai?” is the only thought that doesn’t seem to leave to my mind as I lay back on my cousin’s couch on our last day in San Francisco, watching my 2 year old niece Sarina play with her stacking boxes. It wasn’t an easy choice to make – leaving behind some great friends, a beautiful city, a promising career and most of all – a loving family. It seems like every choice you make in life has trade offs – some are easy to let slide, while others can scar you for life. I have no clue how the next year will shape up for us, but Carrie and I have never been more excited about anything else before making our decision to start this journey.
We decided to move to India for a while where I can work on my start up and we can get a chance to mold our schedules so we can travel across India. Carrie has her own priorities to build her tennis coaching experience and network while learning our language at the same time. The thought of changing course sprouted when we suddenly realized how comfortable and anchored we were getting in our careers and lifestyle. My start up was not progressing quickly enough with a full time job. Something had to change. We knew we had to break away from the addictive nature of steady paychecks and constant weekly schedules and force ourselves out of our comfort zone. Another strong reason we chose to live in India is to live with my family and spend time with my mother and grandfather, while Carrie can experience a whole year of festivals and immerse in our culture. All of this might not seem like the logical financial choice to make, but we decided to listen to our hearts and the timing seems just right. It has to be now or never.
That said, I (along with Carrie) want to extend our sincere gratitude to our amazing friends and family in San Francisco who helped shape us to be what we are today. San Francisco is without a second thought, the most fascinating city we have seen yet – which was home to some big steps in my life so far. I was able to build a strong foundation for my career, starting with my internship while in college, some fascinating start up work and my first jobs which helped me build my abilities and confidence to take on anything. I had the pleasure of working for a small firm, the largest organization in the world, quit a job and get laid off. I was also able to become a kick-ass snowboarder, got engaged, got married (thrice!) and became an uncle (twice!).
Being unemployed by choice seems to have its own perks. So far, I believe it has brought out a new sense of freedom and creativity in me and Carrie somehow seems greatly relaxed and excited at the same time. I hope that our first journey driving across a good chunk of America will help me clear my head and end with a life experience to take away.
Good bye San Francisco… for now.