A year in.

Its been over a year since I last posted anything on here, and thats been because of a  of a plethora of reasons. For the first couple months it was excitement and anticipation, the next few was due to a lack of time to work on pretty much anything outside of my classes at RISD, apart from a couple YouTube videos, and then, well, I had a ton of time on my hands but nothing ever inspired me to get back to writing. I like to think that this is something I enjoy doing but the truth is that I'm lazy, and it often just skips my mind. Regardless, it has now been a little over a year that I've actually moved to the United States. For some reason people have a difficult time understanding that I'm here to stay now. The majority of students who come to this country come on Student Visa's sponsored by the university's they're attending, (I-20) and these expire a little under a year after the completion of the students' degree. That, however, isn't the case with me. I'm a lawful permanent resident of the United States, and so unlike every other student who returns to the country from where they came, I'm not. This is my new home now, its been quite the journey from Dubai to Canada to India and now to the United States, and this is where I want to stay. It is, however, turning into quite the challenge, the more I think about it, the more I realize its quite a bit more difficult than I'd thought, especially because of the particular situation I'm in. I came here to move here, and to start college, at the same time! That isn't the most easy thing to do, especially since its quite the challenge to do things the permanent resident way, but still have to explain that my permanent address is in Ohio (or now Kentucky!) but I live in Rhode Island. Either way, after a seemingly endless break of close to nine months when I start again, I'm about to return to RISD, and I'm more than excited to be back and start working. Being aimless is probably one of the worst things a person can feel, it makes you feel worthless and just downright sad. Having a purpose is wonderful, being able to work, and pursue what you want to is the most satisfying feeling ever, and I can't wait to be back at it. I tend to jump rather quickly from point to point in these things, and it doesn't really seem to have very much of a direction other than to just kind of let the internet know whats going on in my life. I'm happy to have finally got my driver's license a month ago and be able to drive, no matter how little. It gives me a ton of freedom to be able to go where I please and enjoy the journey! I'm going to end this particular post right here for today, there isn't too much more I need to say right now. 

Anticipation for America

As a continuation of sorts to my last post about leaving India, this is my summarised experience of immigrating to the United States of America.

Unlike most, I, fortunately or unfortunately have always seen the United States from the perspective of the top 0.1% of the United States. My uncle is the CEO of a large US-Based Multinational Pharmaceutical company, so I can safely say, we're all well taken care of when we stay in the US.

This time, however, is a little different. This time I've immigrated - there's no going back! This is my new home, my new country of residence, and above all; a new chapter. 

Thus far, america's been great! I've always loved coming here, but I do have certain anticipations for my future in this country for as long as I'm here, which does feel like the foreseeable future. 

The American Dream is an aspiration, a goal, a future that can be seen and something that people believe they can work towards, the country known for opportunity, there is, however, a flip side to the coin. America also does have a rather ruthless side to it, a lonely side, one where if you don't make a go of your opportunity, what becomes of your life is, well, let's just say, less than desirable. 

America has a funny way of life. There's a great life, or there's a horrid one, and there's a fine line between getting on the path of a bright future, or getting on the one less desired.

Anticipation is an important factor in the journey to become the future of my life, the concept of the American dream, the idea of failure and the drive to achieve are all important factors to drive my life and make me make a go of my opportunity.

This is my perception, my view and my anticipation of the United States of America.

 "We the People..."

 

My time in India.

I've been in India for 4 years. I leave India in 4 days, its been a journey, and this is my attempt at a summary of my experience over the course of the last 4 years.

My circumstances for coming to India were less than desirable - my parents got a divorce, and my sister and I were uprooted from our home and the country in which we were raised, Dubai, and were put on a flight to India, to my grandparents' house in the country's capital; New Delhi.

India's been in the news for all the wrong reasons in the last 4 years, and unfortunately, my mother, sister and I've been caught right in the middle. We live in the City of Gurgaon, in the State of Haryana. The self proclaimed "Millenium City". The closest place to our old home in Dubai that we could find. 

The fire that was my pre-existing hatred for India was only fueled by all the difficulties that we as a family faced in our day-to-day lives, whether it be being cheated out of money, having something stolen from us, my mother and sister being stared at by men on the streets, or me being bullied, the hatred bubbled inside me and showed no signs of ever subsiding.

This did, however, change as time went on, our third year in India began the chain of events which led to my getting on a flight 4 days from today, my interest in Art and Design began to blossom and eventually got me admission into the most prestigious design university in the United States; the Rhode Island School of Design. This finally showed me light, a goal, something that I could look forward to and work for. 

My constant irritation, and bad mouthing India did not, however, end when this happened, from constantly being harassed by people for no fault of mine, being cheated out of money, suffering the (I don't even know how they call them roads!) roads of gurgaon, the constant hospitalisation because of the disease infested, polluted air that was shoved into my lungs - all of these and more was everything I could see, and blinded me from what India had done for me.

I was always a quiet child, no-one who knew me could ever call me outgoing, or talkative, that too changed when I came to India, with all the bad, there were morsels of good here and there during my stay here. I managed to crawl out of my shell, I made friends, started going out, started driving, discovered my passion for photography, started earning, and much much more.

To be honest, the loud "Pills and Potions by Nicki Minaj" is just too loud as I type this for me to really know what I'm spilling out onto this page, but I do know one thing, and that is that even with all the bad, all the challenges I've had to face here, and all the challenges (and that isn't an understatement, there will be many) I'm to face in the next 4 days, all have something good hidden inside them, every challenge I've had to face has taught me something invaluable. Thats coming from me, the gadget engulfed, 'spoilt', materialistic child of the 'hollow' city of Dubai.

For all the good and the bad, for all the Delicious and Disgusting, for all the Beauty and all the Boring, for all the Difficult and all the Easy, for all the Great and all the, well, not so great, I thank you India, you showed me one thing that no-where else could; how fortunate I really am, and how thankful I need to be for it, and for that I wish you well, you're a beautiful nation with challenges, but hidden in those challenges, India, are lessons that as a nation, you're yet to learn, and when you do, and you will, you will emerge victorious.

I bid you Adieu.

Education

Alright, so I haven't posted about anything on here in a while, but in light of recent events, i felt that this was a good time to write about education. I'm 17 years old, just finished the IB Diploma Programme and Graduated High School - Essentially; I'm done with school! Now what I want to talk about is what I've learnt over the course of my school-going life, and this might shock some of you, and some of you may be able to relate entirely.

As a recent graduate from high school, most of my days are currently filled with hours being spent on social media whether it be on my iPhone or my Computer. A lot of my time has also been spent going out to movies with my friends, and hours spent feeling low that everyone I know, I'm probably not going to know only a few short months from now. But the point of this post today is to talk about what I've learnt, and what I, on a personal level, BELIEVE I've learnt - and that is nothing.

Nothing at all - now thats not to say that I can't solve simultaneous mathematical equations without breaking down, or that I can't understand the subtle hidden meanings in texts written by a plethora of authors, but I believe that skills like those could've been learnt by a person dedicated to learning them without attending school.

The reason I say this is because there are many different styles of education. And I would know, I've been fortunate enough to be able to live in and experience the different education systems in different countries over the course of my life. The most recent of which are the IGCSE and IBDP education systems.

There is simply one major flaw with all the education systems today, and that is that they are largely memorisation tests. Everything we've been "taught" doesn't really seem to apply to our day-to-day lives, but is stored in our craniums only to be spilled out onto our examination answer sheets and then its forever forgotten, never to be used again. And that is the critical shortcoming of education today!

Now, you may argue that the IB diploma programme, for example, is a hands-on, project based educational system, and whilst that may be true, the only difference between the IB and other educational systems is that it makes you memorise ideologies and concepts rather than just textual information. And like I said before, that is the critical shortcoming of education today.

I'm not an educational expert, nor do I have decades of experience teaching, analyzing and assessing styles of education quite unlike the people who develop these educational systems, but I do know that after 12 years of going to school, I haven't used anything I've learnt at the institutions I've attended.

This is my personal opinion, and my perception based on my observation and my experiences, you may entirely disagree, and I endorse that! I believe that everyone is entitled to their own opinion and that is their right! If you do, however, want to talk about this with me, I am now available to talk and would love to discuss education, or virtually anything else you'd like to talk to me about, remember to reach out to me in the 'contact me' section of the website.

 

Humanity

What does it mean to be human? What are humans? What separates us from the animals? Is it our ability to walk on two legs? To Speak? To Read? - To be human is to be able to adapt! The main differentiating factor between us and the animals is our inherent ability to adapt. Why is it that when forests are destroyed by forest fires, or that fields near coastlines are waterlogged because of flooding that the wildlife in those areas tends to die out? - Because they couldn't adapt! Hypothetically speaking, if us humans were in a similar situation, we wouldn't die, and we wouldn't necessarily leave an area we've called home, we would adapt to the changes taking place, and continue to live there in harmony. 

Now here's my two cents; for the last couple centuries, what have humans been doing? - Have we been adapting and evolving to our surroundings? Or have we been creating artificial ones? People may argue that our creating of habitats is human in nature, but I think otherwise. We've stopped growing, we've stopped developing, and we've stopped evolving. In a world where entropy is essential, we've created an artificial equilibrium. For so many generations we've been living in the confines of artificially created habitats for ourselves, that I genuinely believe that we've lost our ability to adapt. Think to yourself, that if for a month you were left in an uninhabited forest, would you be able to survive? Would you be able to tend to your bodily requirements? Would you be able to thrive in that sort of environment? - Of course you wouldn't, no matter how much time you were given, because you've lost your ability to adapt. We all have! It started with industrialization, creation, but it went too far, to the point where we lost our abilities to the hands of creation. 

We've lost our ability to adapt, and thus I believe, we've lost our humanity. What differentiates us from the animals now? Animals would be able to survive in an artificially created habitat too!

It isn't just abnormal, its unnatural.

-Aaditya Ailawadhi