'As much as I can psyche myself into relocating after reading progress reports in the popular press, every monthly trip is consistently a buzz-killer when I'm physically there'. Writes Jay Gupta, a Lemon & Ice reader, who is seriously contemplating a move to India from the US to start a new venture. His position perfectly describes the dilemma faced by many overseas Indians seduced by the tantalizing opportunities in India's growth story. Today, a senior level posting in India is a 'no-brainer' for any aspiring corporate chieftain (especially those of Indian origin). The salaries in India at senior levels are just as good, the opportunity to spend time with family is a great sweetener and the chance to be in a position of influence in an emerging super-power (and one's homeland), all add up to an irresistible package. During exploratory trips to India, many expats stay in five star hotels where it's impossible to develop a sense of daily life in India as a resident. Besides, the perpetual self-congratulatory prose adopted by the Indian media can be quite misleading. When I moved here initially, I was staying at a five stat hotel in Mumbai and partying every night like a rock star. I'd wake up happily hung-over after a night of revelry and the first channel I'd hit on TV was CNBC. The anchorman was a sunny young fellow with a perpetually upbeat tone on the economy. He's what I would call a 'bull market broadcaster'. According to CNBC, every new days heralded a day of new milestones and possibilities that brought India closer to super-powerdom.
As if cue, the markets would open limit up 2%-4% every other day and I'd smile smugly and congratulate myself for being a genius. For once in my life, I was at the right place at the right time, and funnily enough that place turned out to be home. Back to square one and better off for it! I couldn't help but wonder how it all works out in funny ways. I was loving India and loved being here.