After earning his graduate degree in architecture, Gogol settles in the Big Apple, where he gets a cushy job at an architecture firm. He's doing it, folks. He's totally living the American Dream.
He remembers a trip to New York City that he took with his family when he was a kid. They drove right past all the sights, and headed straight for the Indian grocery store. No Statue of Liberty, no Empire State Building. No nothing.
One night, he goes to a party at a posh loft with a co-worker, where he meets an artsy woman named Maxine. They really hit it off. Sparks are seriously flying.
Lo and behold, the next morning, Maxine invites him over for dinner at the swanky house she shares with her parents. Gogol has an awesome time, and really likes her parents, Gerald and Lydia Ratliff.
Maxine seems like a great catch, right? So it's no wonder, then, that Gogol begins to date her. In fact, he spends all of his time with her, and barely ever goes home to his own apartment.
In June, Maxine's parents head up to New Hampshire, so Gogol and Maxine have the house to themselves for the summer. Sounds pretty nice to Shmoop.
In August, Gogol's mother calls him and asks him to visit home before his father leaves for a research fellowship in Ohio. The couple decides to stop by his parents' house on their way up to New Hampshire to visit her parents.
When they arrive, Gogol discovers that his parents are having a home security system installed for some reason. We wonder what that's about.
After lunch, they briefly celebrate Gogol's birthday and Gogol tells his father to have a good trip to Ohio.
Then Ashoke accidentally calls Gogol "Gogol" in front of Maxine. Uh oh. How's he going to explain that one to his ladylove? By avoiding the subject entirely, apparently.
Maxine doesn't push it, and they head on up to New Hampshire, where Gogol settles into country life with the Ratliffs, who own a house by a lake.
The Ratliffs throw Gogol his 27th birthday party, during which a woman named Pamela makes annoying comments about his Indian background. Not cool, Pammy.