I have always been passionate about traveling. After traveling within my country for many years, I now had the time and opportunity to fly internationally. All thanks to Deerwalk. With newfound excitement of exploring an unknown destination, I started my journey from Tribhuvan International Airport to Boston via Hamad (Doha) and JF Kennedy International Airport (New York). These airports are much larger and global than I had ever imagined. After traveling for 30 hours, 20 of which I spent in the air, I was exhausted when I landed in Boston. Yet I so wanted to explore this unknown land. From the Boston airport, my travel buddies (Arjan and Saurav) and I swiftly proceeded to our stay, which was about to be our home for a month.
After having a light breakfast the next morning, we met Abanish Dai, our point of contact during our stay in the US. Even though the jet lag had completely taken over me, I still had an entire day’s work ahead. Besides, I was excited to meet new coworkers and catch up with old acquaintances. The next day Arjan and I went to the NBA games, the most prestigious basketball league in the world. We went to TD Garden, the home ground of Boston Celtics, to watch the Celtics play against the Brooklyn Nets. The match became much more interesting with the away team winning the 3 point free shots which leveled the score and extended the match to the extra time.
We are thankful to all of our senior Dais and Didis: Suresh Dai, Sagar Dai, Manish Dai, Awanish Dai, Sanjeev Dai, and Sangita Didi who invited us to their homes. There, we had time to meet unfamiliar faces and exchange fresh ideas. These invitations made us use our own kitchen much less than we ever thought. Also, the dinner at Tuscan Kitchen, one of the finest Italian restaurants, with non-Nepalese Deerwalkers was one of the best cuisines we had abroad.
My first weekend was a road trip overnight to New York City (NYC), the city that never sleeps. We were amazed to see the buildings and monuments on the way to our destination. The view from the 102-storeyed Empire State building makes all the other high-rise buildings look smaller. Similarly, places like Hudson River, Staten Island, Brooklyn Bridge, Central Park, Dumbo Park, and Times Square made me realize why NYC is one of the most touristy destinations in the world. While returning to the office after my first-weekend tour, we heard how coronavirus (COVID-19) was affecting the daily lives of citizens. Lack of sanitizers, toilet papers, and household items in the supermarket was making things worse.
Texas was my 2nd out-of-state visit the next weekend. I had time to meet Kundan Dai and his family. I spent my entire weekend with them; however, the terrible weather stopped me from visiting many places. I visited a few places in Fort Worth and Dallas like Sea Life Aquarium, Pioneer Plaza, Water Park, and peaceful Botanical Garden.
The following Monday after Texas visit things were changing much faster as the epidemic changed to the pandemic. Within a few days, the lifestyle of normal people changed drastically. Most people in our office started working from home. There was not much traffic on the road, and most restaurants were shut down with only takeovers service available. Also, that week our place of stay changed quickly, as we needed to evacuate the current stay and shift to another extended stay because of the gas leak in the building. The worst part was that we needed to cut our US trip short and return home just one day after we shifted the lodging. As the situation was worsening exponentially, we flew back home. Thank you, Subash, for arranging the return tickets promptly.
As I contemplate on those last two weeks, I realize how time flies and changes within a moment. My motto will always be don’t wait rather enjoy the moment you have. You might not get a second chance, you know.
I wish I had the chance to stay in the US for an entire month, exploring unknown places, seeing many marvelous things. Yet I had to rush back. Such is life! Anyway, I would like to thank Sushant Pandey Dai, my whole Care Manager Team, and Deerwalk for making this trip possible.
[Santosh Devbhandari, Senior Software Engineer at Deerwalk Services Pvt. Ltd. Nepal, visited Deerwalk Inc, USA, from March 1, 2020 – March 18, 2020]