Yes we will – Barack Obama wins US Presidential Election

Today I got an opportunity to watch the historic win of Barack Obama, the first Afro-American president of USA. More than the historic nature of the win, what impacted me was the speeches by both candidates.

After having fought the hard battle, Senator McCain gave the most graceful speech I have heard till now. It was short, to the point, graceful and above all the differences he had with Obama. McCain not just congratulated Obama but also committed to work with him and help him build the nation in the time of crisis. True to his soldierly attitude, he was also sporting enough to applaud the efforts taken by his opponent. While his supporters were booing Obama, McCain calmed them down and never showed sign of losing. He was very positive in his approach. He knew that he has given a good fight and not left any stone unturned.

Obama on the other hand was not as effective in the oratory skills. His speech started with a long list of people to thank and once that was done, he set the future agenda. One of the most important thing he said was that this victory is not the end, it is the chance that they have got and it is now a bigger responsibility to ensure that the dreams are fulfilled.He gave example of a black lady aged 106 voting in this election. Taking her lifespan as a prop, he reminded all about the history, right from the days of slavery to Linclon, to Martin Luther King to today. The speech was full of positive energy, as was McCain. He reminded all of the herculean task ahead and assured the republicans that he will be there president as well. Though it was a bit longer speech, I just could not escape the positive spirit it had.

This positive spirit is what USA makes a different country and takes them to the number one position in the world. Even in the toughest of the times, they have that will to overcome it. And when I am saying about the positive spirit, it is not the general public as such, it is the leadership. When the nation gets people who are so charged up at the center stage, the nation just can not fail.

While the speeches in India are so dull and slow and the audience is noisy, I was very much impressed with the involvement of the audience and the force in speech. The cautious optimism in Obama’s speech was very practical and the overall tone of the words spoken was rational. Their was faith in God, trust in people and willingness to listen. That’s what makes USA the nation it is.

पहिली अमेरिका वारी

अखेर अमेरिकेला पोचलो. आकाशातून बघताना सगळी पृथ्वी सारखीच दिसते. पण जरा जवळ आल्यावर जे नियोजन पाहिले तेव्हाच कळले की हा देश का वेगळा आहे. (इतके मराठी टायपिंग बास झाले एका दिवशी)

San Francisco when seen from the top looks so well planned. The town planning is very well defined in blocks. Most of the blocks are pretty rectangular and the houses within the block are quite similar to each other and give a planned look to the city. Having ample land makes most of the houses about 2-3 storey tall. Even the office buildings are all spread across.

I have been in sub-urban and rural areas of South Africa and now I am seeing various suburbs in California. What struck me most was that most of these houses are just like our houses in rural India. Sloping roofs, garden in front or back, car parking etc. But what makes them far more attractive and high quality is the overall discipline, neatness, cleanliness and detailing in the finishing touches. All houses have a well maintained garden/ lawn around. Very well defined parking area, all compound walls are well constructed and complete. You will hardly find broken walls. Also the people here can easily manage with a nominal boundary. Go to the crowded areas, on the roads, between buildings you will find that just a nominal barrier is enough to maintain discipline. Rarely you will find people crossing roads at will and at any place. It is in nature to cross the road at junction or at zebra crossings. This is a diagonally opposite of Pune, where even a 4 feet road divider is not a guarantee that people will not cross the road over it.

I keep on wondering, why is it impossible for us in India to show this discipline? Why are not our rural houses so complete till final detail?