Finding Home

Home is where the heart is.

— attributed to Pliny the Elder

At one time, when trying to decide which city I should move to in the US, I’d thought of moving to somewhere in New Jersey. The family business is based there and I wanted to run it one day, didn’t I? I would live in some suburb in New Jersey where rent isn’t as high as in, say, NYC or San Francisco, and I would be able to save a lot so I’d be able to travel for maybe a month every year. I’d live in dissatisfaction for 11 months because that 1 month of travel would make it all worth it, wouldn’t it? Everyone would be thrilled with that decision because I’d be doing the sensible thing by picking the business as my career and centering my life around that. I’m not that person.

The life I was setting up for myself was one I would want to escape from for as long as I possibly could. There was something so horribly wrong with that. (What if I were to die before taking that vacation?!) It was such a depressing thought. Instead of counting the seconds until I jump on a flight to seek happiness wouldn’t I rather wake up happy every single day? Was running that business really my life-long dream? Well, maybe it really would come with a side of depression and, as everyone knows, that’s a good breeding ground for great artists, right?

I’m single, have no commitments, nothing to hold me back, no one to tie me down. But I was doing that myself. I prioritized incorrectly and I was so uncomfortable and unhappy even at the thought of it. I realised I’m not one to do life that way.

First things first, I decided. If I do move to the US, I have to pick a city I actually want to live in. It has to be a place I’ll enjoy, a place that gives me arm’s-length access to the arts, to the theatre, to jazz bars, to film festivals, to art galleries, to city-life, to window-shopping upon a whim, to dropping in to familiar cafes, to trying new restaurants, to so much more! A place where I can browse used-book stores for hours and then walk home, entirely satisfied! I don’t want to have to drive a car to get from anywhere to anywhere! I want to be able to walk around in it, to just really enjoy the city, its sights, its sounds, its life!

The city I choose may be miles and miles away from my initial decision, but, once that’s decided, the rest will just have to follow. Yes, I probably won’t be able to run that business one day but that isn’t as important as my happiness so it doesn’t worry me. It will be my brother’s legacy and that’ll be his choice and I’ll be happy for him. From what I know of life, it should always be centered around happiness. Little else is worth it. Right? Right.


Add Yours
  1. Sean King

    Thank you, I appreciate your willingness to explore the challenges you face and to share. Your struggle is something I can personally relate to; not in terms of where to move to, but definitely in terms of happiness and life. For selfish reasons I hope you follow the path that continues to bring us thoughtful gems such as this one. Peace and Blessings Karishma.

    • Karishma

      Thank you very much, Sean! Your most recent piece of writing certainly strikes the same chord within me. Material success rarely brings happiness. It is in being who you are and following your heart and living for yourself that you find it. Thank you for your kind selfishness too :) I appreciate that very much.
      Wish you real happiness and wholesome success, Sean.

  2. Renu

    Totally agree! Just stay happy and do what makes you happy! Do not fall into another’s trap and do what you think ‘would make them happy’! Way to go girl!

    • Karishma

      Thank you! It takes some learning to do what would make oneself happy and if it pleases others in the bargain, all the better! This was a tough decision for me, but it brought me much peace, so it must be the right one. :) Thank you so much for reading, supporting, encouraging.

  3. Fareda Abrar

    Follow your heart,little usually works best..and on the off chance that place X doesn’t work out–there’s a whole world waiting to be discovered!.good luck and happy hunting :-)!

  4. Archana Sharma

    That’s what we always wished for isn’t it? The magic wand, the prayers – to be happy. Follow your heart, live life as you choose and be happy always. Spread your wings and fly, Love you always.

    • Karishma

      It really is! But, like that joke goes, one can’t expect to win the lottery if one doesn’t buy the ticket. :) The only thing that matters is the end result, which should be happiness.

  5. Our Life In 3D

    Hi Karishma, forgive me I am catching up. This may be old news by now but are you still looking at moving to the US? I read your new town requirements and it parallels all the great points of Charleston, SC. Charleston is culture, great dining, history and more. There’s a 2 week international arts festival every year. It sits on a peninsula so its surrounded by water but small enough to walk everywhere. It was first described to me as 2000 mansions sitting side by side, beautiful gardens, beaches, a college town nightlife, and ArtWalks once a month where art galleries hold open house with wines an finger foods while you browse their works..kinda like a walking art party throughout the 35 open galleries. Its great! If you have a lazy evening sometime check out: The video has something for your other passion at the 6:30 mark. Here’s another website with some 411 and colorful videos: and on the arts festival:
    …I hope you have been doing great! How soon are you going back to Italy? Your fine writing took me there. Ciao!

    • Karishma

      Hi! You’re right! My immigration to the US has just been approved and I will be moving there by the end of the year! :) The city looks beautiful and it would definitely be a place that I would consider moving to. I’m still in the process of deciding which city should be my pick. I was thinking of San Francisco, since it has a relaxed atmosphere and wonderful old-world charm, not too many high-rises, no subway but cable cars, the sea, no snow, lovely weather, wine country, the Golden Gate bridge, gorgeous architecture…phew. However, there are too many factors influencing my decision.
      I hope to return to Italy very, very soon! :) At present I’m in India, enjoying some quality time with my lovely extended family.
      I hope you’re doing well too! And that you have found some time to travel this year! I believe you weren’t able to enjoy sunnier climes this winter, so I also hope you have found a way to more than make up for that!

      • Our Life In 3D

        We are setting sail, er wing, for Jamaica in September. we found a resort that offers nannies from 9-5. We just obtained two passports for the kids this week and lucked out with two great photos.

        I don’t know much about San Fran other than I hear it is expensive and lots of culture that you are looking for. Charleston doesn’t have any subways. Its too small for them and they would be below see level. ~not good in hurricane country. But there are buses dressed up to look like trollies and male college students driving bicycled rickshaws, along with all the horse drawn carriages. Plus the tempered climate too, like San Fran, from being on the coast. There is no winter. I hope you are having a great time with your family and friends! Take some pics :)

        • Karishma

          Ah, how wonderful! Finally the trip is materialising and high time too! :) Good photos are always a bonus; I have a very, very crappy one with my US immigration papers. (Almost delayed the application because of that…)

          Charleston really does sound like a wonderful, enjoyable city! And any place that doesn’t have a harsh winter is good in my books. :) I did not take a lot of pictures in India. I was surprised to find that it was there that I was worried about looking like a tourist, something that doesn’t bother me even in Toronto. HAhah!

          Hope you have a MOST wonderful trip! :) And I hope to read about your adventures there!


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