Blessed to be here!

I try to live by Anthony Bourdain’s philosophy…I write, I travel, I eat and I am hungry for more. My trip to the US a year back and my time spent in the International Ambassador (IA) retreat, International Student Orientation and now blogging as an IA is, somewhat, satisfying my modest take on this big life philosophy… a way of living life with ‘no reservations’.

At least it’s a start…

The retreat was some serious fun. If I had to wrap it up in the least number of words…it was “soul searching rejuvenation with some strangers who ended up as a family!!”…I could be liberal with those exclamation marks. I was pleasantly surprised. My new family – a cocktail of efficient and enthusiastic staff, fun loving and crazy undergrads, overworked and ready to leave work at the word ‘go’ grads (I apologize for self-sympathy). Need I say more!!!

When I started my journey to the US in August 2009, there was a sinking feeling with a rush of adrenaline, the feeling then hitting rock bottom to jump right back to choke me up with emotions. Sounds dramatic, but it might have been the flight take off and seeing my country become a small speck in the distance. I realized soon, we as human beings like our comfort zone and resist change; but when the change comes along we are very much equipped with the necessary toolkit to adapt and embrace it!

At the registration desk, the first few hours of the International  Student Orientation was mind numbing. In a span of a half hour I had passed (to the scanning station) 20 passports from 10 different countries; China to Mexico…When I look back to that day, it was satisfying to be a part of what I would call a humble example of a ‘global melting pot’.
This is my little tribute to Anthony Bourdain’s 100th episode being aired on the Travel channel today. To sum it up, I appreciate my life a little more as an International Ambassador and a part of the international community of the University of Notre Dame.

Shailaja Kunda, International Ambassador from India

September 7th, 2010


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