Saturday, June 03, 2006


Oom-pithe-tal (OPT) is a French phrase which can be loosely translated to mean ‘the state where life is ordered and tranquil’. I have been experiencing OPT ever since I landed here in Chicago…

1. When I landed, I was supposed to be here for a week (for the initial kickoff) and then move to Troy for my onsite assignment. But then the plans got changed and I was asked to continue here. My house lease plans went for a toss and I had to intrude into one of my friend’s apartment. I didn’t know that was just the beginning of things to come.

2. The apartment complex where I decided to stay had strict rules about its tenants and guests. They didn’t encourage guests using the tenant's swipe card for admittance (yea, we had to swipe a card each time we entered the building), so my friend had to see me off and pick me back each time I went out and returned.

3. I couldn’t receive my parcels as I didn’t have my name on the apartment mailbox.

4. My project work sucks.

5. I applied for an SSN, and when they sent the card, it was bounced because I didn’t have my name on the mailbox.

6. I applied for a bank card. The first card which the bank sent had the same fate as that of my SSN card. I applied again, and asked them to send it to the local branch. I went there and collected it, started using it. On the third day, when I swiped my card after buying a cold coffee, the cute lady at the counter smiled at me “This card is no good”. Transactions were declined on that card. I checked with the bank, they said there was a ‘lost or stolen’ reported against the card. The lost or stolen was in fact on my first card. Somehow they messed it up. I had to wait for another week to get my third card.

7. I still havnt applied for my driving license.

8. I applied for a credit card. It was declined. I know you are not surprised, so here is the rest of the story. I had citibank calling me three times, conducting a session for me and my friends before I left for US, educating me about the benefits of the card they are going to give me. They even followed up with a mail after me reaching here. I finally applied and they promptly rejected.

9. I used to stay at the 46th floor and the reception for my cellphone was pathetic to say the least. I used to get connected once in a while; I tried drawing a pattern between the connection availability and the strength of wind, but cant say I was successful.

10. My friend fell ill.

Finally to take care of 2, 3 and 9, I shifted to a new apartment.

11. After moving in, I realized that my new place has absolutely no connectivity for cellphones. Before this, I used to get calls, only problem was occasionally my calls were dropped. But here, I don’t even get connected, so don’t have to worry about dropped calls any more.

Now I am eagerly waiting for the next bazooka my way :_)


Alexis Leon said...

Geo how is your friend. Hope he is fine.

You seem to be enjoying the life out there :-) Sorry buddy just could resist it. Hope things are getting better.

The last time I heard "Oom-pithe-tal" meant the 'Show must go on'. Have you chnaged the meaning :-)

Better luck in the coming days...

>|' ; '| said...

ah..lifes soo good :)
what more can u ask for huh...
peace, serenity....
total insulation from the world -- no cell phone beep beep to disturb parcels and no mail...

life of a kinda rocks in a perverse perspective :D
card thannillenkil venda! namukku apartmentil kore kizhangu vargangalum, kore kozhikalem valarthi samrudhiyayi kazhinjoodey? ehh :D ssn-node, bank-kalodum poyi pani nokaan para :)

onumallelum ellam mair-u-thanne..i mean maya thanne :P

Jiby said...

geo, go easy macha...every newcomer in the us must go thru this.

shit man...i can imagine how frustrated ur...though 1-11 never happened at one go for me like u, most of it keep happening again and again all thru US life!!!

sometime u realize too much of order and method can bring chaos into life!!!

Anita said...

Except for the friend part, I dont know why all other problems of your yours appear as fun to me .. anyways I am sure, you would have many more coming in the future and dont miss to put them up here..

Have a great time..

Jithu said...

one small doubt. u went to the US or to Uganda?

Dhanush said...

I was lucky to have got SSN, but Credit Card and License needed for time before which my company called me back and I gladly accepted. Btw I too was in Chicago, Schaumburg to be exact.

Come Back Man .. Here
1. Airtel will givie you excellent coverage
2. You wont need to swipe in cards at your hses
3. Credit Card guys will give you N cards.

What more :-) - Good post, reminded about my frustrations when I landed up in Chicago.

kiron said...

Fanaa kandu. Don't know if it was OPT :)
Ask someone who knows Hindi. Rat and Sand were there. Avarum Hindi puli aayathukondu kozhappam illa :-S.

shruti said...

Hmm looks like ur having a tough time ... neways guess some things make u appreciate what u have more ..hmm bazooka !! have a pet dislike for this word !

kickassso said...

Nannayi sayippine valipichittu vaa:D
btw, whats the bazooka for?

shruti said...

hey u dere on orkut kya ?

AF said...

aww poor Geo!!..hope things get beter for my sweet friend!

venus said...

awww.. all is not bad though, look on a brighter aspect- you have a beautiful weather in chicago! u live near lakefront! and you don't have to curse traffic :)

Mind Curry said...

well, i am sure at the end of it all when you look back you will have fonder memories than anything just enjoy sure there are plenty of goodies to mention, and we hope to hear about it soon..probably it wont fit into one small post!

@ alexis - yes, the show must go on..thats what geo was trying to say i guess :)

hope and love said...

im sure that u must have tackled all those problems in your own style..
nee thirichu vaa

quills said...

Aah Chicago is no better than certain parts of Kerala in terms of connectivity. :)) Glad to hear that. :) Anyway, hope you are now settled and well. I have finally resolved the connectivity issues on this part of the world as well.

Hope your friend is better too.

Take care and keep writin.

Thanu said...

I'm going to troy this weekend..

Rat said...

Geo, what did you do to your friend?
Pile-on ?

Lee said...

Geo, I can really identify with this post...after coming here, I too have had more than enough experiences like this!..I too could write up a blog on this! :)