Five years ago, on this day – January 29, 2013, we landed in Minneapolis around 2:30 pm after 21 hours in flight for a 120 degree temperature shift. Since then, what an extraordinary 5 years it had been. It started as a 1.5 years assignment at Target, got extended to be 2 years, then 2.5 years and then finally left Target and decided to stay here for Adhruth’s healthcare. Approximately 1.25 years as consultant with MSFA at U.S. Bank Stadium and currently 1.25 years with Atomic Data and going strong here.

5 years back, when we were at the Airport, the Immigration officer asked there are 3 passports, and only 2 of you here, and I had to lift Adhruth from his Car Seat and show to the officer. Adhruth was 2 years and 3 months and just reached 15 lbs. What a journey it has been from there on – numerous hospital visits and all the great Doctors, Nurses, Surgeons, Therapists here in Minneapolis, who have given us the Adhruth we adore today. He has lived here almost twice more than what he has lived in India and is used to the cold weather here 🙂

I did not know what it was to drive car on the right side of the road, no idea of how the tax system works, did no understand the insurance benefits and how healthcare works nor what are the services we can have here. Credit score, written test for license, driving test, getting pulled over, driving at 70 mph were all new for me here. I have lived only in places where the lowest the temperature would go is 65F and we felt cold and would turn on heater, use 2 blankets, wear Sweater, cotton in the ears, monkey cap etc. Minneapolis thought me all of this. I have never even seen snow in my life, leave alone driving in it. Now 5 winters down, we love the cold. Sight of additional brightness because of the snow during the night is a sight to experience.

Minnesota – the only state I have lived in this 5 years. Cold city with warm people is what Subhashree described this to our family back in India. Yes. Everyone here have been welcoming to us. There is not a single time in the last 5 years, I have felt out of place or not welcomed anywhere. Everyone around have been smiling, warm and helpful. I have experienced this when I have moved around with Adhruth in the stroller in the skyways. Even after a long day of work, when they are running to get into their car, people don’t hesitate to spend couple of more seconds, holding the door helping us.

Got the opportunity to visit the places that I have only seen in the map – San Diego, LA, San Fransisco, Disney land, Grand Canyon, New York, Washington DC, Niagra, Wisconsin (multiple times), Iowa etc. Every place is distinct, unique experience and treasured memories.

Thank You Minneapolis for this great experience this 5 years. I came here not sure how our future will be here and what was in place, you showed us much more than what we expected.

Oh, is everything going great and there is no regrets? We have not travelled back to India in this 5 years and our plan is getting pushed out for many reasons. 2018 / 2019 may be the time.