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  1. #1
    Friend of Leo
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    Default Major life decision

    First off, my apologies for being AWOL for so long. I may have mentioned some time ago that I was being overwhelmed by life, but if not, I should have - even if I couldn't be specific at the time.

    This had obviously been bubbling beneath the surface for a while, because when it finally broke through, I felt a sense of relief albeit with many mixed feelings. As I'm sure some of you may know (or not), I retired from IBM almost 6 years ago, being extremely fortunate in having joined in 1984 and being grandfathered into the pension plan. Being single and unencumbered, I've had a pretty easy time of it so far apart from a couple of health issues, including open heart surgery four years back to repair a valve; and its all good now.

    I've made trips to India every year to visit my parents, who for being in their late 80s, are holding up well for their age. In one of my earlier trips, I took my Stewart travel guitar with me (with a USACG neck) and left it there, and its been a great thing to have. Well, I realized some time back that it didn't make much sense for me to be here in Bethesda by myself - I've lived here since 1984, and in the same condo complex since 1989 - and not be with my parents. Who knows how much time they (or even I!) have left? Besides, I'm an only child, so I really have no excuse.

    So, I've decided to move back to India long term - maybe not permanently, but certainly for the foreseeable future. As you can imagine, unraveling my life here can be complicated, even if things today are a lot easier thanks to technology. For example, my pension and social security get electronically deposited and my investments don't need to be touched. My good friend Don who is a realtor, and who I go back with over 30 years, will sell my condo for me after I'm gone, since I've decided not to deal with tenants from halfway across the world. Luckily, Bethesda is pretty sought after (way more than when I first got here!), being a very close-in burb to DC, so that should be cake. Of course, taxes are going to be a problem, since as a US citizen, I have to jump through hoops to avoid paying taxes in both countries even though my income is sourced solely from the US. Luckily, healthcare in Bangalore is world class, and even my doctors at Johns Hopkins have said I'll be just fine, and that they will keep me on file for whenever I come back.

    Which brings us to the music situation. As much as it broke my heart, I've sold all my recording gear, even the 336 and the Godin I had just bought, as well as the Gries amp. I've left my three USACGs and the Viking amp with my buddy Jim for safekeeping with the caveat that he play them as much as possible. If I never come back, he gets to keep them. The nice thing about technology is that my laptop is even more powerful than the desktop I got 5 years ago for recording. All the software I need has now been transferred, and when I get to India I plan to get a Boss GT-001 - which is a relatively inexpensive USB recording interface with very acceptable amp sounds and effects. Its going to sound nothing like the tube amps I'm used to, but if I were to be honest with myself, I'd have to admit that my chops are the true limiting factor, especially with today's technology.

    Oh, one more thing. I bought a used Rainsong nylon string parlor size guitar to take with me. In case you haven't heard of them, they're carbon fiber guitars and are impervious to any weather issues. This one actually sounds pretty good if you don't obsess about comparing it to wood, and is lighter than a cup of tea. Something to play on the couch, I guess.

    So, that's my story and I'm sticking to it! Every time I notice my condo emptying out, or look out the window, I realize how much I'm going to miss Bethesda; its been home for almost 40 years. My days are currently occupied with getting things squared away, clearing out the condo, getting rid of junk I've accumulated over the years and so on. So, if I don't make an appearance often, I hope you guys understand.

    I'll keep you all posted.

    Srini

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    CustomWes (09-10-2017)

  3. #2
    Fenderfied
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    Default

    Srini,

    I wish you well and good fortune on your new adventure.

    Please keep in touch on this forum and let us know how things are going.

    But most of all - play on!

    Bb.
    I'm a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.

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    Srini (09-11-2017)

  5. #3
    Fender Deluxe
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    Default

    Wow, that's some story Srini. I had no clue about any of your history. I'm a former IBMer myself, but only worked there for about three years so no pension for me unfortunately.

    Sounds like you have an exciting adventure to look forward to.

    All the best!!
    "But I don't want to go among mad people" Alice remarked.
    "Oh, you can't help that," said the Cat, "We're all mad here 'n stuff."

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    Srini (09-11-2017)

  7. #4
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    Default

    Wow. And I thought Lisa and I were daring when we decided to chuck everything and move across the US. You've got a wonderful adventure ahead.

    Best of luck to you!
    "No matter how smart you thought you were, you are actually way less smart than that." - David Foster Wallace, from Infinite Jest

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    Srini (09-11-2017)

  9. #5
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    Srini, I do wish you well in your new endeavors! Please stay in touch with us from the other side of the globe. I grieve for you in having to decide to release some of your treasured instruments, but that's all they really are, and can be replaced if and when you desire. Stay tuned, friend!
    "Life's too short not to enjoy great tone."

    Some contend that rock 'n roll is bad for the body & bad for the soul
    Bad for the heart, bad for the mind, bad for the deaf & bad for the blind.
    It makes some men crazy and they talk like fools.
    Makes some men crazy and they start to drool.

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    Srini (09-11-2017)

  11. #6
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    All the best Srini, your parents have a wonderful son!
    http://www.fendertalk.com/forum/signaturepics/sigpic581_3.gif

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    Srini (09-11-2017)

  13. #7
    Friend of Leo
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    Default

    A heartfelt thanks to all you guys. I must say that the one thing I have definitely achieved in life is getting to know some of the nicest people the planet has to offer, such as yourselves. This is true in real life as well, and every friend I discussed this plan with - to a person - said that I would regret it deeply if I didn't do it.

    Graeme, you're right, the most important thing is to keep playing, and that I will do. Who knows, maybe the change in environment may spur enough creativity to help me finish a song or two! Dangerine, I had no idea you were a fellow IBMer. Is it possible our paths may have crossed? I did a ridiculous amount of travel for Global Services and the Software Group, so I wouldn't be at all surprised if we had been involved in a gig together. I feel really bad for the people whose pensions got cut off and had to make do with the lump sum, and I hear people aren't even getting that now. I'm so glad I resisted the urge to job hop and stuck with IBM all that time, although 1984 to 2011 may have been way too long! The IBM of 2011 was so dramatically different from the IBM of 1984 that you could say the only thing in common was the name. What a shame!

    Mike, thanks for all your incisive comments on the board and the good wishes. Luckily, as far as you guys are concerned, there won't be any change really, because I'll still keep posting as usual. Stan, what can I say, except thanks again for everything as always. I agree with you that these instruments, as treasured as they were (and are) remain, at the end of the day, tools for a purpose and can always be re-acquired if necessary. I'm starting to believe, though, that with technology going the way it is, some of the cumbersome pieces of equipment like tube amps, may be confined to history. For all practical purposes - especially on YouTube - I hear no difference between real amps and their models. And when I listen to someone like Alex Hutchings doing demos on inexpensive Boss equipment, I'd trade sounding like him for sounding like myself through a real Dumble any day!

    Thank you so much, Keb - the real truth is that I have wonderful parents, not the other way around..:) Trust me, I'm getting the better end of the deal on this!

    Nothing changes for me on the forum, except the frequency of my postings, and that only until I get through the move. I don't leave until January - its better to finish up the year in the US for tax purposes - but I'll get busier and busier as the day gets closer.

    Thanks, guys!

    Srini

  14. #8
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    Default

    You're doing the right thing, Srini! My wife and I did a similar (but on a much smaller scale) thing when we moved back to Michigan from Colorado. Everyone to whom we spoke said, "Why are you doing THAT?!?!?" But - much like you - family was the reason. I'm not saying that there are not days where we pine to be just 90 minutes from Rocky Mountain National Park or in Boulder eating lunch while looking at the Foothills. However, as major life events have taken place over the years, we know that we made the proper choice.
    I wish you safe travels as you head back to India and memory-making moments as you reunite with your parents!
    ~MW
    "But hey, I like these cheap riffs, they make me happy and alive each day here, when all seems lost and grey good riff pump blood stronger, sweat visit your face and - you feel then all right!"~ Elvir 2015

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    Srini (09-13-2017)

  16. #9
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    Default

    Yeah, Man....Good on ya! And if ya don't stay, Y'all come back, ya'heah? Mrs. Bad and I also considered going back to IA from our home in NC for the same reasons. (she more than I) She went back for two months to check it out; scout real estate, etc... Ended up coming home and saying "This is our home".... Whew.... Dodged a bullet there. I hate moving!!

    Check back in when ya can! We'll leave the light on for ya~~
    Bottle Rocket Scientist.....

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    Srini (09-13-2017)

  18. #10
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    Default

    Anything is possible Srini but probably unlikely. I was hired in 1999 as a Sales Specialist for the NUMA-Q Server Div. which was merged into the RS/6000 (pSeries) Div. ten minutes later. I worked mostly out of the downtown Maiden Lane office near the WTC. Actually I was supposed to be there on 9/11 for a staff meeting, but our meeting was moved to the afternoon, since I and some other colleagues flew back from D.C. very late on 9/10. I was essentially forced out in 2002 by some very nasty management types in 2002. They gave me a nice package to leave quietly.
    "But I don't want to go among mad people" Alice remarked.
    "Oh, you can't help that," said the Cat, "We're all mad here 'n stuff."

 

 
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