August 15th is India’s Independence Day. It is ironically the day when I received my passport — just days after I got my US citizenship a year ago. Something strange about the cosmic turn of events. The US passport has been the best gift in life, for it has allowed me to travel as much as I want, as often I want. It has set me free.
For the longest time, whenever I had to go somewhere, I needed to plan weeks ahead — I had to get visas for the countries I wanted to visit. It was often a tedious process and it often killed the spontaneity of travel. This past year I have traveled to London (UK), Copenhagen (Denmark), Paris (France) twice, Italy twice, Mexico and India. The only place for which I needed a visa — India. It wasn’t a fun process, but it’s okay — a chance to spend time with friends and family and celebrate my parents 50th anniversary was totally worth it.
4 thoughts on “Freedom”
There was this infographic that was going around social media recently called “How powerful is your passport?” which colour coded countries on a spectrum based on how many countries you could visit on the strength of your passport without a visa and the UK/USA was at the top with 173/172 and Yemen was at the bottom with 42. While Indian freedom fighters fought for independence for our nation state, in this globalized world all of us will never be truly free until all people, not just people from a few countries can move around with fewer shackles. The infographic is here: http://cdn2.vox-cdn.com/assets/4660451/passport_map.jpg
A nice reminder of things we take for granted as a US citizen – and that I probably need to renew mine. Here’s wishing that we can somehow make it all digital.
So happy the government issued you your “wings.” Happy 50th to your parents!
I wish I were as well travelled.
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