India: Tomorrow Day After

We meet again, friends.  It’s good to be here, even if I had a semi-significant amount of anxiety leading up to this point.  More to come on that.

I’m hurtling past the “flyover states” on my way to Newark airport in order to catch the epic 16 hour odyssey that is flight UA48, EWR-BOM.  I’m also hurtling toward a project deadline and a project kick-off.  The next three weeks are going to be busy, to say the least.

But before we get back into India let’s talk about India being in the US.  The last three weeks were busy, too, as we hosted our team from Mumbai in Chicago.  It was a fun turning of the tables, with me as weekend tour guide and food finder, and it was enlightening for both sides to see what it’s like when you are now the host or the guest.  “Everything here is so convenient” was the oft-repeated mantra from our visitors.  Make of that what you will; it gave me pause after I heard it the fifth or sixth time.

One of the best parts of having the Mumbai team in Chicago was watching both parts of my overall project team meet in person – and subsequently abolish all their preconceived notions of each other!  Skype and email communiques really can throw of your judgment.  As we’ve all probably heard, it’s not what you say but how you say it.  And, in the case of our Mumbai-Chicago pairing, we are often saying the same thing yet with different words or phrasing.  My Chicago folks have pointed out that after two years of this India stuff, I have certainly picked up a few of the local phrases.  Here now, a guide to Indian and American (Ahmurican!) English:

Use it in a sentence, please.
Office timings are 8-5 pm.
I go to work, whereas Nikhil goes to office, not the office.
This morning
Today morning
Today morning, I had breakfast before going to office.
Day after tomorrow
Tomorrow day after
Tomorrow day after, I will be working in Mumbai.
Yet, or as of yet
As yet
There is no answer as yet.
She put on her glares so she wouldn’t squint.
Those rooms are clubbed together in the department.
Carry-on baggage
Hand/cabin luggages
Be sure to get your hand luggages stamped in security.
I reached home later than planned.
Revert  back/revert
Please accept my apologies for the delayed revert.
Move up
My calendar opened up so we can pre-pone the meeting.
I request that
I request you
I request you to send me confirmation.
Get rest
Take rest
Take rest so you feel better.
I shall send it over. (It’s surprising how often “shall” is used instead of “will.”)
SMS me when you arrive.
In/of two minds
You were of two minds about what to pack.
He sent it to you via post.
Private office
She was on a conference call in her cabin.
It’s on the next lane over.
He was cribbing to his mom about the dinner menu.
My friend stays in Goregoan.
Take a picture
Click a photo
We clicked lots of photos at the party.
Lot many
There are lot many things to do today.

This list is by no means comprehensive and I will try to add to it as this next adventure unfolds.  I find a certain charm to it all; we’re speaking the same root language and yet there are times when we have no idea what the other side is saying. 

It’s time to sign off and gear up for the long haul over there.  Let’s talk again, tomorrow day after.

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