8:00 pm, November 9th, 2012. Hurricane Sandy has just battered the US Eastern Seaboard. New Jersey and its neighboring states are still trying to recover from the massive destruction all around. Several thousand households still without power, and gasoline shortages all around causing long lines at the gas stations. Amongst all this pandemonium, lights go up on a small theatre stage in Edison New Jersey. A young man, dressed in US Army fatigue, rise up from a corner and says, “Hi! I’m Ron. Captain Ron Mitra. Talking to you from Bagdad Iraq.” The show starts, because the show must go on.
by Amitava Sen
That was a Sunday afternoon not long after I came to this country; I was traveling to Kansas City on a Sunday to attend a conference in our corporate head quarter with my boss and a few other co-workers. Although the road to the airport had light traffic, I missed the flight. I panicked at first, but then realized that no harm had been caused. The meeting was for Monday morning and I had the whole night to make up for the delay. Those were the days when Pan-Am and TWA were still flying; you could change your flights without paying a penalty or even could transfer your flight to another airline. I rebooked in a flight touching St.Louis, Missouri in between and reached my destination later in the evening. Other than my boss, Stanley Simon no one noticed that I had been missing. He seemed visibly upset. I offered some kind of excuse and he in turn did not make any attempt to hide his incredulity. Continue reading