There are some things which are absolutely unique to you. You don’t realise when you do them and why you do them, but you do. And that’s what I did with my watch whenever I travelled abroad. I’ve been traveling out of the country for ages now, and for some strange reason right from the first time I ventured out of my comfort zone (Mumbai, India), I never adjusted my watch according to the time in the country I set foot in. I would let my watch be set to the original India time and never ever changed it. The only way to know the current time in the current city was through the good old cell phone. And honestly I had no hand in that adjustment either. It was automatic, since the mobile network automatically adjusts to the new country it is switched on in. So thankfully, I knew the correct time at every place but never through the watch. Bizarre, isn’t it? I rarely ever used the watch for the reason I wore it.When I settled in US, I adjusted my watch at last! #LifeofanNRI #emotions Click To Tweet
At that time I used to think the reason why I didn’t adjust my watch was because I had to call home (Mumbai) twice a day and it helped me know the exact time back at home; so I wouldn’t land up calling at unearthly hours. It was a pact to speak to my parents atleast once a day irrespective of whichever part of the world I was in and hence it was important to know India timings. Am sure if I ever travelled to the moon, my folks would still expect me to be in touch with them (and happily so) every single day and perhaps I wouldn’t adjust my watch even there. Outlandish but true. And this way the saga of not adjusting the watch during every travel continued… even when I moved countries and settled in the United States.
It’s only when I came to the US for good I realised why I never changed the time on my watch as per the country I was traveling to. Because I simply couldn’t let go! It sounds super crazy, I know. People happily adjust their watches for practical purposes and reasons as soon as the craft lands in the new country. I was perhaps the only irrational and silly girl who wore a watch which showed some bizarre time. But I never wanted to feel far from home even when I was seven oceans apart and that behaviour continued till now, for over 12 years! Unbelievable; how I never realised what I was doing and why. So when I finally moved to Atlanta I looked at my watch and was about to adjust it to EST when something in me didn’t let me do it. I left it as is and stopped wearing the watch altogether.
Change, though they say is a constant, is very difficult to accept. And my mind and soul weren’t ready to accept the change. Though moving to the US and joining my husband (who had literally been living alone for almost a year) was something I was desperately looking forward to; but my watch didn’t listen to me! Or maybe it is correct to say that I didn’t accept the change. Perhaps, I found the thought that India was so far and my parents and siblings were even further, pretty disturbing. In my mind my watch (well, ALL my watches) as per India timings kept me close to them and that thought was indeed very heartwarming. While the thought was very comforting something else happened. I completely stopped using my watch. So much for feeling the closeness to my kith and kin! It was useless lugging around a watch which didn’t show the correct time, so I decided to skip wearing it.
I have been very fond of watches and have managed to hoard (yes; that I suppose is a better term than ‘collect’) a fleet of watches. All shapes, sizes and colours I could lay my hands on. They held ornamental value for me too, and I loved the entire process of buying a new watch. Yet, while moving to the US I realised it was irrational to carry so many, so I happily distributed some of them to my even happier girls (sisters and nieces). The ones I carried to the US are all safely tucked in my dresser and all of them minus one, still show India timing. Oh yes, I finally changed the regular one to Eastern Standard Time in the US after I realised the futility of it all. Closeness is in the mind after all, isn’t it and not in the time the watch shows. It was my decision to move out of the country which my family respected and somewhere I felt that I was disrespecting my own decision. The emotional attachment was too much and too over-powering, but I had to let go.
That’s when I embraced the change and finally adjusted my watch.
P.S. – will do the same with my entire fleet slowly and steadily whenever I can make time! 🙂