LII. The Introverted Socialite -

For I am the Introverted Socialite.



I decided to take the plunge and stay on campus one summer. I was in a lab and taking the Philosophy of Bioethics- one of the most amazing classes I had ever taken at UPenn during the absolute worst summer I have ever experienced as of yet.

(*Remember: In reference to the last post: “Summer” is referring to the period between the end of one academic year and the beginning of the next one as pertains to your own life. )

My birthday falls within the second week of June, well past the culmination of the college spring semester, and so I had to celebrate the day of my birth at Penn of all places.

My friends and I went out to eat for the occasion and afterwards chilled out at a grill place frequented solely for the purpose of drinking - believe you me, this context was far from my much-awaited birthdays at home growing up: going to Punjabi Kebab and enjoying every moment of the company of my three brothers (one biological brother and two cousins).

So I’m at this place where I feel highly uncomfortable but not so much since I was with people who I consider to be some of my closest friends, though they may not regard me in the same light since I never part-took in the cult-like-insider-status gained with chatting online, or drank, which apparently solidifies friendships at UPenn, but I digress.

My birthday celebrations that summer made the otherwise blessed June day into a dull one, and our chilling was the equivalent to what I imagine to be a horribly awkward interaction between crush and unsuspecting crushee.

Suddenly a boyfriend of one of the attendees of this horrid outing had texted her asking if she was drunk because her texts were tidbits of illogical nonsense, in other words, a cry for help to reflect just how horrible a time we were all having sitting there.

How did I know he asked her this in his text? Well, she of course vocalized said text, you know, just to add to the already awkward ambiance. I suppose it filled the silence and so any of her and her boyfriend’s irrelevant communications was welcomed with sighs of relief.

She continued by vocalizing her text back: “Unfortunately no, none of us are drinking.”

Furious New-Yorker, Sikh, Punjabi, Puerto Rican, I wanted to slap her across the face. Instead, I chimed in with the college-campus-appropriate “intellectual”-passive-aggressive quip: “You guys can drink if you want. I’m not stopping you.”

Oh no she didn’t- she did not just say “unfortunately” they are not drinking.

Fortunately: You’re finally not killing your internal organs so you should be thanking me for my fortunate non-alcoholic presence.

It’s my birthday damn it. How dare you -


Regardless of my answer to the dichotomy presented in an interrogative tone, ‘Day with friends or day for yourself’, being the second option, I cannot be alone.

I want to travel and think to myself, perhaps I could make traveling happen. What if I happened to have found an opportunity to go a place I wanted and had the finances set-up to go off? I wouldn’t be able to go alone. I cannot go alone.

My day-dreaming of traveling, while sitting in the passenger seat during an all too common week-night-short- road-trip from Macy’s to home, had become derailed.

From future travels to past prophecies…

….almost home, I remembered telling my parents repeatedly, from age five to sometime in high school, that I would not get married.

Here was the plan: I would become the successful physician and I would live alone in Manhattan, NYC with large windows that would overlook a busy city street that was mostly a flood of yellow- taxis, that is.

Now, I want to get married. I cannot imagine not growing alongside someone. I cannot imagine never having loved or been loved, avid Bollywood viewer that I am and Punjabi that I am, inheriting the tales of the famous lovers, known as a jointed and hyphenated identity: Heer-Ranjha.

The above is in addition to my parents who are a real-life story of love that I never get tired of narrating to anyone who wants to hear. Witness of my parents growing up I came to the realization that God really made them for each other.


ਮ: ੩ ॥

ਧਨ ਝਹਿ ਨ ਆਖੀਅਨਿ ਬਹਨਿ ਇਕਠੇ ਹੋਇ ॥
ਝਕ ਜੋਤਿ ਦਇ ਮੂਰਤੀ ਧਨ ਪਿਰ ਕਹੀਝ ਸੋਇ ॥੩

Third Mehl:

They are not said to be husband and wife, who merely sit together.
They alone are called husband and wife, who have one light in two bodies. ((3))

                                            -Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, (Sikh Scripture), 788


Just yesterday I was eating my Kashi Blueberry Cluster Cereal, dry as per the usual, since soggy cereal was never something I embraced.

One fairly large cereal flake rushed to the back of my mouth.

I felt like I could not bring up the hard flake to the forefront of my tongue.

I panicked and quickly downed a water bottle, all the while, feeling the flake’s edges along the soft tissue of my throat.

Panicky and bladder filled to saturation, I ran to my mom who was mid-yoga and told her what had occurred.

My mom, known for tough love, broke her yogic stance.

Her eyes softened and she stared at me when I asked, “Can you come to the other room with me?”

I had said enough, she not only came but went to the kitchen and made the strawberry shake she had refused to make only hours before.


I hated being alone: What if something had happened?

The introverted socialite status is something I only realized recently.

I am no longer that girl who would never marry. I am this young adult now, and according to my dad, “of marriageable age”, and I accept that statement.

In fact, I just came from a dinner in honor of realizing a new alliance between families and it was so pure and so right -

It may have also been the view I had from our restaurant table on the West side.

The view was of a NYC street: a flood of yellow- taxis, that is.