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Finally here, in Pune

I made it safe and sound.
Pune is nicer than I was thinking it would be.
I'm enjoying myself so far. Have yet to make any friends, or find a hobby, but
maybe in time. Wouldn't mind learning some basic yoga, and take hindi classes.
I'd even love to learn about the holistic medicines here.
My dog has yet to arrive. I dont know why it seems that NO ONE here nor USA can get it straight as to what India requires to import a dam family pet dog. That was frustrating. I nearly lost it on many occasions. Decided not to, I will get better results if I keep calm. (good lesson to learn btw)
I havent felt very energetic or 100% well since I have been here. Hopefully lost some weight. (Believe it or not, I do NOT like Indian food) My husband is the greatest man. So kind and eats the foods I TRY to cook.
Anyway, life is good. This weather is GREAT! People are nice enough as well.
I'm here...if anyone feels like communicating please do.

Melissa.

Hey,

I can't imagine what it's like to transport a pet. I would just hang in there and keep your cool, because it won't be the last time. I've been here a year now, and i've come to realize when I lose it or obsess myself with an issue I end up causing myself 10x more stress.

Feel free to message PM me if you want to chat or ask any questions. Do you mind me asking what part of town you live?

Kat

we are in hadapsar. ive decided to just go with the flow now. im a fish out of water trying to adjust. i cant afford to stress myself out.

Welcome to Pune! We're American and have been living in India since 2007. We brought over a cat AND a dog when we arrived. It was really rough for my dog. She never allowed us to put her back in the crate again. (She was huge greyhound - her crate was enormous!) We've been in Pune for a little more than a year. Pune is quieter, calmer and while it's very hot right now, the weather here is better than up north. People are more cosmopolitan and accepting of different cultures. Because of the many good colleges, there are lots of students so there's a lot of nightlife.

Koregaon Park is where most of the restaurants and shops are that cater to expats and their ilk. Kalyani Nagar is a bit cheaper and close by.

Hadapsar features Amanora and Magarpatta City with housing, tech park and malls... Amanora and Seasons are two of the newer ones, but a lot of people still like the Phoenix Mall. You can pretty much get anything you want here, but at a price. For food shopping I would recommend Dorabjee's to locate all the imported international foods you like to cook with. (You'll be shocked to find bacon for the equivalent of $11 or hot dogs for $5!) Green Tokri is an online vegetable delivery service that is well recommended.

That should get you started. Are you working with a broker or personal assistant to hep you get settled in?
Have you registered with the FRRO (Foreigners Regional Registration Office - also known as the Foreigners Rectal Reaming Office)? It's important that you get that sorted immediately. It's a complicated mess. You can read more about it here:
american-in-delhi.blogspot.in/2013/12/dealing-with-new-online-frro-renewal.html

And the follow up:
american-in-delhi.blogspot.in/2014/01/the-frro-again-and-again-and-again.html

Again, welcome to Pune! :-)

Cheers,
Jeanne

Hi,Welcome to Pune. And pune is one of the best places in India to live. Hope you are enjoying the stay here, And there are lots of tasty Indian recipes, you can learn quickly. Anyways All the best and have a nice day.

Hi Jeanne,

Looks like you are enjoying life in Pune! My wife and I traveled to Pune and Magarpatta City last year trying to "feel" the place before moving in. We were thinking of relocating to India, after spending 25 years in the US. We stayed in Hotel Cocoon for a couple of nights, walked around a lot, and were not really taken in by the city, because we felt the air pollution was still too high! How is the air pollution in Koregaon Park, or Kalyani Nagar? My wife has Asthma and needs a clean air environment, which is what is driving us nuts!! Otherwise, being originally from India, we will have no problem adjusting back to the lifestyle there, I hope...

We are planning another trip this year around November to explore some more areas, from a fresh perspective, in the hope that we can find some place with a lot of greenery, even if it is on mountainous terrain, that has no pollution. Have you been to Lavasa  city?

Any input is welcome. And when we come there, we would be happy to meet you to get an update on your experience of living in Pune:-) before we leave our present home country and jump in there!!

Thanks!

Anand

Pune is fair cleaner when it comes to pollution than most other Indian cities. (Kolkata was the absolute worst.) I've been told either the lowest floors or the highest floors are better, but no one has shown me any evidence. What I would suggest is finding a nice row house with a backyard so that you can amass plenty of plants. A friend of mine has an entire wall in her house built in with plants to keep the air in her home fresher than outside (her daughter has asthma). It's certainly cooler... best of luck with the asthma issue.

I would not stay in the Cocoon again. We found bed bugs when we were there and they didn't even look shocked when we complained. We demanded they wash everything and send it to the Radisson in Kharadi. We're living in Shastri Nagar now, near Kalyani Nagar, which is far noisier than I expected. The first year here in Pune we stayed in Wanowrie in a row house which was really nice, but our neighbors did not like foreigners so we were forced to move. Landlords fear their society people, kind of like the co-op people back in NYC, who can make their lives miserable.

Even though you are of Indian heritage, you may still face challenges here. There is a certain issue with NRIs, otherwise known as "Not Reliable Indians" by locals. I don't get it. I think it's jealousy, but NRIs are put down a lot and find it difficult to find work with traditional Indian firms. They think that 1) your salary demands will be quite high, 2) you will compare how you worked in the US to how it is here and complain, and 3) you will become disruptive and want to change the way things are done here. You need to be very politically savvy to survive these "lalalji" type firms. These are all similar comments to the way expats are viewed, but there's a bit more negativity when I hear locals talk about NRIs. Your best bet is to focus on multinational companies which are more open to hiring people with work experience in US. I consider it an advantage, hiring NRIs, but even I face the challenge of high salary requirements when trying to hire NRIs. I usually wait until they've been in India for at least a year, when their salary demands have become more typical. They've accepted the fact by then that their salary will be a third of what they made in the States, if that. For example, I wanted to hire an NRI who had been making $65K as the manager of a night club in Chicago. He was interviewing for a recruiter position with my company, which has an annual starting salary of Rs. 300,000, which is around $5,000/year, plus incentives that would double that salary. Needless to say, he ended up going back to the US. :-(

I've never been to Lavasa City. Where is it located? You may find Bangalore somewhat cleaner. I've never been but people say that the city is fairly clean and its weather is quite livable...

Good luck with your search.
-- Jeanne

Jeanne,
Thank you for your candid opinion. Yes, I know Kolkata, because that is where we lived, while in India, for 17years! That is where my wife contracted Asthma. We cannot think of going back there again!!

Sorry to hear about your experience in Cocoon. OK, we did not see the bed bugs, but we were also surprised at the attitude of  the generally unresponsive staff, on any issues for that  matter ! But we are not going to try Magarpatta City again anyway.

I am shocked to hear about people's attitude towards NRIs. Actually we don't even feel like NRIs. We are truly Americans today, having totally imbibed American values and living the American life. For example, unlike most Indians settled here, ALL of our friends here are Americans! And we cannot think of living anywhere in the world without a few American friends to hang out with. And of course, we do not care what the Indian neighbors are going to think about us. Not that we are anti Indians. My best friend lives in Pune. And he is a highly enlightened person, retired from a large Indian corporation, where we both had worked together in the 80s...He and his wife will be our good friends to fall back on at any time. But he has been discouraging us from coming to live in India on a permanent basis !  But I told him I may give it a try, atleast for a year.

I am not trying to find a job in Pune...I have just retired from a long career as a computer programmer for the US Marine Corps, and we are thinking of relocating to India, living entirely on our retirement income! Which is absolutely doable, considering the Rs. 60 per dollar rate today...But if I want to do some work, I will happily take up a job just to keep myself  occupied - the money is not important! May be I will do some volunteering

Well...I have been rambling. It is a nice night today after a long cold spell. We are in the 80s for a change. Oh, by the way...can I get Pandora on the internet in India?  That is my favorite source of music. And do you get Netflix there, in case my wife wants to watch a movie?

Thanks for writing back.
Anand

I as a Punekar glad to hear that you are liking my city.
Have you went to Lawasa yet?

Anand - As far as I know, pandora and netflix do not work in india...  For netflix when i logged in with my account after coming to india, it said 'netflix does not work in the country where you are currently'. Major bummer !!!

Hi iammega, No, not yet. I am not in Pune yet. I have a plan to visit Lavasa City when I come in November.
Thanks
Anand

Thanks, Mattkp.  I got a similar message for Pandora when I tried to login from Singapore. They have no permission to operate in Singapore. So, looks like it is the same situation in India too.  I am currently in Kansas City, Missouri.
Thank you for letting me know.
Anand

Hi,
Wish you best of luck and Happy living in Pune.
Weather will be perfect from mid june. Why dont you join cooking classes aslo for your husband.
Take care, Do remember me if something needed in Pune.
Raza

Welcome to Pune

hi-there r over 50 meetup groups in pune 2 suit everyone.  join 2-3 groups 2 keep busy & u,l both b & happy here.
helpall

Hi

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