Friday, January 13, 2017

A partial list of what I learned about a man I'll never meet and a country I may never visit while on the phone four hours to computer support yesterday

He's 24 years old.

He's been married for a year to his high school sweetheart who he's known for 10 years.

The city he lives in, in India, rarely gets very cold or very hot. In the mornings, it's misty, and then all day it's sunny, and in the evening it's cool, but "a nice cool."

He currently works a graveyard shift and sleeps in the daytime. His wife works days and sleeps at night. They see each other on the weekend.

They both work in the tech field, but, "when I see her, I say something sweet to her instead of talking technical."

Growing up, he wanted to be a famous soccer player. "I wanted to be a star." But to get that good, he believes you need to practice at least 6 hours a day, and he had to work. To become a soccer star, you have to come from privilege.

Though he couldn't be a famous soccer player, he found many other interests to make him happy. Like geography. He can tell anyone anything they need to know to have a fantastic trip when they travel anywhere in the world. He doesn't make enough money to travel.

He learns all about other cultures by talking to people on the phone while running programs to flush the malware out of their computers.

He had a golden retriever but it died when it was 5 or 6 years old. He had a cocker spaniel puppy, but after he'd had it for just two months, someone stole it from his yard.

He hopes to have enough money to have a house and children some day. "I believe this will happen...? No, yes, it will happen." He hopes to not have to work as long hours and to have a better schedule so that he can spend time with his wife and kids. "Work when you are young, relax when you are old." He doesn't think he can stand the heartbreak of having another pet.

It's hard for him to sleep in the day with all the light and knowing that the weather is so beautiful outside. It's hard for his body to get tired. When he gets off work, he tries to wind down, he works out, he plays some soccer, he tries to sleep.

He is in favor of the Prime Minister, even though many people are very unhappy with him because of what happened with India's money. When the old currency was deemed illegal and the new currency came, people who had cash had to stand in "queues" for days to exchange their money. You had to provide proof of how you earned that money, and if you were unable to do this, you had to pay twice the amount in order to exchange the cash. He is paid through direct deposit and always uses his card so he only had to exchange money once, for his landlord, and his "sweet mom" offered to stand in line for him.

He has a friend who lives in Chicago, who called to say that, on his first night there, he heard a gunshot. The tech guy asked me how safe Portland is and whether there are ever gunshots here, and I said some, yes, but that it was relatively safe as far as cities go. He seemed completely perplexed by my answer, that some gunshots could constitute a safe city. He said he lives in one of the largest cities in India and shootings never happen there.

He was equally perplexed when I told him I had a good job but not a college degree. He said in India education is the number one thing. Jobs are very competitive and if you want one, you have to have the best education.

His schedule changes monthly. He never knows from month to month what shift he's going to have and what days are going to be his weekend. This month he shares the weekend with his wife, so on those two days, he tries to stay up all day and sleep at night, which causes an adjustment period when each new week comes. "I think this might be bad for my health, but I want to spend time with my wife."

If he does anything his wife doesn't like and she says so, he will stop doing it. He says she has complete say in all things. Except that she can't tell him not to play soccer. He will never let anyone make him not play soccer.


  1. Sweet. Thank you for sharing him with us. : )

  2. Completely different world that's just like ours... I second Stephanie!