Thursday, April 28, 2011

The never ending story...

The mellow rays of the early morning sun gently caress her face as they filter in through thin cracks in the drapes, waking her up. For a moment she lingers in that sometimes merciful state of amnesia that comes with being only half and only just awake. Not for long. All too soon she is wide awake and remembrance strikes with a painful jolt. She is alone. All over again. All too soon.

Forcing herself to get out of bed she wanders out and surveys the ruins around her. They seem to be mocking her almost, painful reminders of an all too fragile relationship that has finally snapped. She sighs as sudden waves of weariness wash over her. It is more a feeling of being overwhelmed that she has to deal with, rather than physical exhaustion. She asks herself the question she has been asking over and over again, or so at least it seems, "Is it me? Has it always been me?"

There is no answer. There never was. This wasn't the first time it had happened. It has been so many years now and she has seen it all so many times before. The early days bringing with them hope, a promise of better times to come. Short lived bliss. Then the ambiguous middle phase; sometimes good, sometimes full of confusion, sometimes rocky and painful. She always told herself this was the worst phase of them all, that if you could get through this, you could face anything that was to come. But yet, each time when the decay began to set in it never failed to upset her, to throw her off balance. She would cope of course, she had no choice, but each downward spiraling struggle seemed to make her a little more jaded, a little more weary. And when it would finally end, like it unfailingly did each time, she would invariably find herself just a little bit bereft.

Like she had this last time round. This last time round had not been like the others, she had got into it with her eyes open. Or so she thought. Still when it ended she had felt that same feeling she always did; of having lost her moorings, of having been cheated, used, by someone who could never hope to understand her. She hated feeling like this and yet she knew these feelings all to well, they came with an easy familiarity forged over time. It was the same cycle each time round; anger, hurt, confusion and finally the irrevocable realization that try as she might, she could not go the distance alone. She would have to put herself out there, one more time. And maybe, just maybe she could force herself, yet again, to be brave. To hope. Surely, somewhere out there, there would be the right maid for her...

Thursday, April 21, 2011

We were there! Along with Nikki and her loaded diaper...

I HAD to blog about this before it is too late. With my dismal record of updating this blog of late it wouldn't have been surprising if I finally managed to write about this by when it is time again for the next world cup to roll around. So yes, we were at the world cup finals! In Wankhede! With Nikki!! If anyone had told me last year this time that a year from now I would have attended the Bryan Adams concert and the world cup finals I would've laughed hysterically. From not seeing the inside of a restaurant or a multiplex for over a year, to going for concerts and cricket matches I sure have come a long way. Or maybe I've just been propelled down the path by an intrepid P but it's the result that counts!

So anyway, back to the world cup. It was the most awesome, amazing, mind blowing experience and coming from a cricket non enthusiast like me that's saying a lot! I used to be a cricket fan many years ago, more because I had a massive crush on Hansie Cronje, the then South Africa captain, than for any real love for the game and I used to watch all the SA matches so I could drool over him. Since then I have caught the occasional match, even going for one of the first IPL matches thanks to the cricket crazy P, but I've never avidly followed the sport. So when it came to the world cup this time round, I had never really planned on even following the matches on TV let alone going for a match! I did watch the India Pakistan semi final because, you know, it was the India Pakistan semi final and I was planning on catching the final in Bombay with friends, since we had already planned a trip to Bombay over that weekend to catch up with an old friend who was in town. Now this friend in question had planned a trip all the way from Hong Kong for the sole purpose of watching the match in Wankhede and he'd been set for this a whole two months in advance.
"What a cricket crazy guy!" I scoffed to P the night before the finals "Imagine coming all the way just to watch a match! So what if it's the world cup and India is in the finals? Who wants to sit through a full match out in the open when you can catch it in the comfort of your own home?"
"Er there is a slight possibility that I may get two tickets as well" said P meekly "I didn't mention it earlier because I wasn't sure if I would, but there seems to be a good chance of it happening. Would you want to go?"
"Tickets for the match? THE match? Live? In Wankhede?" I screeched, my eyes the size of cricket balls "Do I want to GO? Yes! YES! YESSSSSSSSS!!!"
The next door neighbor, enjoying a leisurely gin and tonic in his balcony nearly choked on a slice of lemon as my screeching ricocheted off the walls and all around the colony and I beat a hasty retreat indoors to plan the logistics of the trip with P. The match was slated to begin at 2pm and could go on till as late as 11pm or thereabouts. We had no babysitting options in Bombay which meant that we could either take Nikki along for the match or just one of us could go for it.
"You go" I said to P, sighing heavily, as the inner Mother India in me rose up to the fore in full melodramatic form. "I can hang out at friend X's house with Nikki while you watch the match live in Wankhede."
"We'll all go." said P switching on the TV.
"And maybe you can spare a thought for me sitting at home, with the baby, while What did you say?" I goggled at P.
"We'll all go" P repeated patiently, flicking channels.
"What?" I screeched again, Mother India having given way to the Kiron Kher-esque mommy from Dostaana "We'll all go? With Nikki? Are you nuts?"
"It'll be fun. And I'm sure she'll enjoy herself. And if she gets tired we can leave" said P, calm as ever.
I spent the rest of the evening dithering and worrying and finally decided he was right. Saturday morning saw us headed to Bombay, me brimming over with an equal measure of worry and anticipation. By the time we began nearing the stadium I was tremendously excited and was seriously considering buying one of the multicolored clown wigs and getting the tricolor painted on my face like the hundreds of people thronging to the stadium around us. Only the paucity of time and the possibility that Nikki might fail to recognize her mother stopped me. We alighted at the stadium and I bounded up to the ladies entrance with Nikki, a happy smile on my face.
"Where do you think you're going?" said the singularly unpleasant policewoman manning the entrance.
"To watch the match of course!" I told her indignantly.
"And where do you think you are taking that suitcase? Do you really think you will be allowed to enter the stadium with that monstrosity?" She pointed a mean finger at Nikki's cute little diaper bag, which has replaced all my favorite handbags since the day she was born, and which I now carry with me everywhere.
"But..but..but I have a baby with me" I sputtered "This bag has all her basic stuff that I'll need. I can't possibly get through the next couple of hours without it!"
"No bags allowed" said the policewoman without batting an eyelid. "No exceptions. Who told you to get your baby? You should have left her at home."
A cheer rose from the stadium as the opening ceremony kicked off and I fought the urge to just jump over the turnstiles with Nikki and make a run for it.
"But I've come all the way from Pune for the match!" I yelled "And this is just some basic baby stuff! I have to take it in with me!"
"What's going on here?" said another voice as a slightly groggy looking senior policeman walked up. He had just finished a long argument with a lady who had been trying to persuade him to let her carry her 'lucky charm' perfume into the stadium with her and seemed a bit disoriented.
I explained the situation to him as best as I could given that my mind was already in the stadium doing the mexican wave with the thousands of crazy, cheering fans whose voices were reverberating in my ears, and appealed to his better judgment to let me in.
"Let me have a look at this bag" he sighed heavily in a resigned sort of way. "What's this?" he asked, pulling out a diaper.
"It's a diaper" I explained, by now desperate to get in, as the cheering touched a new crescendo "For when my daughter does potty. That is, if she does potty, I will need to change her into a fresh diaper. And these are the wipes for wiping the potty, and this is the hand sanitizer for me to clean my hands after I've cleaned the potty." I took a deep breath and looked hopefully at the policeman who seemed to have turned a faint shade of green.
"Fine" he said in a strangled sort of voice. "Take it all. Please go."
"Oh thank you so much!" I beamed at him "Oh just one last thing" I added as I noticed Nikki's bright yellow muslin square peeking out of the bag "I forgot to show you this..this is the towel with which I'll wipe my daughter's bum after she's finished doing her pott...."
"Just GO!" barked the officer suddenly sprinting off in the opposite direction at top speed.
"What a strange man" I said to myself as I finally walked through the entrance with Nikki, where P was waiting for us.
"Let's go!" I said enthusiastically to P, but he was looking at Nikki with a strange look, slightly wrinkling his nose.
"Er..has Nikki blessed her diaper in the recent past?" he asked wrinkling his nose again.
"What?" I screeched as I bent down to check. "Yes she has! What are we going to do now? I TOLD you this was a bad idea!"
"We'll find a place to change the diaper, and then we'll change it and watch the match" said the indefatigable P.
Easier said than done though. One look at the restrooms in the stadium was enough to dissuade us from even contemplating Operation Clean Up there. After taking several rounds of the stand, and walking up and down the four levels with an increasingly stinky diaper we finally found an isolated counter on the last level which looked like it would serve the purpose. After taking permission from the lone security guard in the vicinity we got down to (dirty) business. Within three and a half seconds a vague looking chappie popped up out of the blue.
"Are you serving water?" he asked hopefully.
"We're not serving anything except a stink" I snapped back, rather unnecessarily, but I was itching to finally go and watch the match!
He'd been gone for precisely thirty seconds when another guy appeared.
"Water counter? Gimme five bottles and one Pepsi" he barked. I didn't bother replying. The delightful aromas from the open diaper swiftly assailed him and he passed out in a dead faint. Nikki, meanwhile, decided that she'd had enough of this nonsensical behavior and started bawling lustily. The security fellow started shooting us wary looks.
"I TOLD you this was a bad idea" I barked again at P who was busy changing the diaper while I did the all important task of supervising the general proceedings. Seven minutes and fifteen water counter requests later we were done. I felt a surge of excitement as we walked past the pile of bodies around the counter (OK, FINE, I exaggerate, but seriously, you should have seen their faces!)and finally headed to watch the match.

Nikki cheered up considerably on seeing the general festive atmosphere all around and joined the rest of the spectators in cheers of 'Indeeeyaah! India!' We settled into our seats with the boxes of scrummy food and drinks provided by the organizers and proceeded to have one of the best evenings of our lives. There were a fun bunch of people sitting around us along with a couple of kids and Nikki had a blast with all the cheering and the whooping all around us. She thoroughly enjoyed all the music (and there was a LOT of it, even during overs!)and could be seen shaking her booty with all her might.
"There's Kohli and Yudi" P said in an awed voice as the afore-mentioned cricketers took fielding positions close to where we sat.
"Yawn. Whatever. I'm not one of those cricket crazy fans who go berserk at the sight of a cricketer." I said in a lofty voice.
"Then I guess you wouldn't be interested in getting a glimpse of Sachin" sad P looking over my shoulder.
"Sachin?" I squeaked in a small voice.
"Yeah. He's so close if you reach through the grill you may be able to touch him...." I didn't catch the rest of his words because I was too busy climbing over the people ahead to get to the front so I could get a picture of Sachin. I was feeling a little sheepish when I headed back, unable to understand the strange adrenalin charged cricket lover that the match seemed to have unleashed in me but the husband remained impressively straight faced and continued to be so even when I made a spectacle of myself by whooping loudly during the multiple mexican waves, jumping up and down in my seat, and at one point even standing on my seat,and generally behaving like a complete dork.

The weather was playing along with the upbeat atmosphere, it was a pleasant, breezy, beautiful evening and there was a palpable buzz in the air. I never thought one of the nicest evenings I'd have with Nikki would be in a cricket stadium with thousands of screaming fans, but there we were, the three of us, having an absolute blast. Nikki certainly had the time of her life and was quite disappointed when the whole thing was over. The sight of ecstatic fans spilling over the pavements to dance on the roads, processions on bikes holding aloft replicas of the Cup and the general party atmosphere seemed to cheer her up on the drive back, even though she was a tad disappointed when we went back home instead of heading straight for another cricket match!
And now, several days later, even though memories of that wonderful evening are fast fading, on many a mellow summer afternoon a tiny little voice pipes up 'Indeeyaahh! Indiyaaa!' and it never fails to bring back a smile to my face :)

Saturday, March 12, 2011

A day with my little chatterbox

Scene One:
Early morning in the Nikki-Mommy Woman-Papa Man household. The Mommy Woman is fast asleep having been woken up several times by young Nikki with her demands for 'Water! Want water! Waaaant!' Nikki on the other hand is up at the crack of dawn and only too eager that the Mommy Woman rouse herself and share in the pleasures of a delightful new day.

Nikki: Goo Mornin Mamma! Goo Mornin!
The Mommy Woman: Gah
Nikki: Wake up sleepy-head! Time to wake up! Ding Ding Ding Ding! Mornin bells are ringing Mamma!
The Mommy Woman: Go to sleep...zzzzzzzzz
Nikki: Thwack thwack thwack
The Mommy Woman: Ow ow ow! Okay okay, you win!

Scene Two:

Nikki and the Mommy Woman are at the mother toddler group where a music and movement session is in progress. All the babies and mamas are dancing enthusiastically to Wiggly Woo. All except Nikki. The teacher looks expectantly at Nikki and the Mommy Woman.

Teacher: Nikki's Mama, maybe you should dance with Nikki and get her to dance too!
The Mommy Woman: Er..sure. *Shakes her booty obligingly* Wiggly Woo! Wiggly Woo! That's how we do the Wiggly Woo!
Nikki, with a disdainful look: Nikki not dance. Nikki bad mood!
Teacher: Try again!
The Mommy Woman, shaking like a jelly: Wiggly Woo! Jiggle Jiggle Jiggle! Nikki, please dance sweetheart!
Nikki, lying down on the floor and stretching arms above head: Nikki reyaxing!

Scene Three:

Time for the afternoon nap. A well fed and bathed Nikki is all ready for nap time. Or so the Mommy Woman thinks.

The Mommy Woman: Nap time Nikki!
Nikki: Nikki not sleep! Nikki go outside!
The Mommy Woman: No Nikki its nap time. Mommy and Nikki will both sleep, okay? *Lies down and pretends to sleep*
Nikki: Nikki singing! Humpty Dumpty sat on the wall, Humpty Dumpty sat on the wall....
The Mommy Woman:Honey, its time to sleep.
Nikki: Row, row, row your boat gently down the stream....this and that thing...merrily merrily merrily merrily... la la la la la!
The Mommy Woman: Nikki....time to sleep....
Nikki...Are you sleeeeeepy? Are you sleeeeepy? No No No!
The Mommy Woman, sternly: Nikki! Its time to sleep!
Nikki: Wahhhhhhhhhhhhhh!
The Mommy Woman: Oh dear....

Scene Four:
The Mommy Woman and Nikki arrive at the park. The Mommy Woman is exhausted after singing 'The Wheels on the Bus' approximately 4684 times in the auto on the way to the park. Nikki on the other hand is all sprightly. Another mother with a young baby that's bawling lustily passes by.

Nikki: Shee Mamma, smaw baby crying waa waa waaa!
The Mommy Woman: You're a small baby too Nikki!
Nikki: Nikki not smaw baby, Nikki big gurl. Shee Nikki do walky walky, not sit in pwam like smaw baby.
The Mommy Woman...Errr well okay, you're a big baby then. But you're still a baby.
Nikki, getting a nasty glint in the eye: Mama...wheels of the pwam?
The Mommy Woman: Er Nikki look at that lovely fountain! Wowie! Splish Splash!
Nikki: Mamma! Sing!
The Mommy Woman: Ok Nikki you're a BIG GIRL! Ok? Not a baby anymore! Hahaha!
Nikki, menacingly: Wheels of the pwam go round and round! Sing Mamma! SING!
The Mommy Woman passes out.

Scene Five:
Its bedtime. The Mommy Woman is exhausted after reading 'Shilly Shally' Nikki's favorite book of the moment over and over again at dinner, and is looking forward to a relaxed evening after Nikki has gone to bed.

The Mommy Woman: Bedtime Nikki!
Nikki: Okay Mamma. *Lies down obligingly on the bed and shuts her eyes*
Nikki: Sheep Mamma. Reyax.
The Mommy Woman: Er..okay. *Lies down beside Nikki and pretends to sleep*
Nikki: Mamma, big boogah in Nikki's nose! *Fishes out imaginary booger*
The Mommy Woman: Throw it away Nikki.
Nikki pretends to throw away the big booger.
Nikki: Mamma, want hug!
The Mommy Woman hugs and kisses Nikki.
Nikki: Mamma, I love you!
The Mommy Woman: I love you too!
Nikki: I love you one!

After throwing out fifty five imaginary boogers and giving seventy one hugs, Nikki finally falls asleep. Unfortunately for the Mommy Woman and her plans of a relaxed evening with a book or a movie , she's fallen asleep herself!

Around 2 am.
Nikki: Hiii Mamma!
The Mommy Woman: Gnmphtr
Nikki: Mamma water. Want water. Waaaaaaant!
The Mommy Woman: Aaaaargh!

And so it begins again :)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Play it again, Mom

Again and again and AGAIN. All day long.

This was just supposed to be ONE of the gazillion things that went into Nikki's potty training*. Pauses to wipe away tears of hysteria. And no, it isn't laughter. Now the child insists on watching it all day long and as soon as I turn it on, proceeds to do a merry jig while she perches on her Fifi Flower Tots pink potty**. Pee and poop on the Fifi Flower Tots pink potty? Pish tosh!

*No of course she's not potty trained yet. *Goes away gnashing teeth*
**Which cost us close to a fortune as the good man and husband unfailingly reminds me time and again.

Video courtesy You Tube. When the child is finally potty trained- pause for fervent prayer and roll of the eyes heavenwards, yes, yes the day will come!- I will highly recommend this as a very effective potty training tool. Until then, balle balle my child, go potty go!

Monday, January 31, 2011

Parents' Night Out

Many many moons ago, when Nikki was still a relatively young baby and not the fiercely independent toddler she seems to have turned into of late, the husband and I attempted an evening out without her. I had just stopped nursing Nikki, correction, I had been brusquely weaned with many an imperious shove and ear splitting shrieks by the child who was clearly more interested in the fascinating world of solids and other beverages that did not involve the mater and my indispensability quotient was at an all time low. To save me from the depths of misery in which I abjectly wallowed, P suggested we attend a friend's party cum art exhibition at an upscale restaurant that was also conveniently located quite close to our home. After battling several inner demons I finally took the plunge and decided to go. Careful arrangements were made to handle the most important part of our evening, namely babysitting Nikki. My parents who happened to be in town kindly agreed to look after Nikki for the evening and accordingly arrived at our house a couple of hours before we were to leave for the party. Our erstwhile maid S (a thousand curses on her pointy little head) was instructed to feed Nikki and ensure that she was sound asleep in bed before leaving for the day, since Nikki was used to be being put to bed by her. With all arrangements seemingly in place, we left while Nikki was having her dinner after kissing her goodbye. Or rather, P kissed her goodbye and then dragged me out the door as I threatened to turn into a clingy, sobbing mess. (Don't even ask me what I'll do on the first day of big school. Nikki, I'm sure, will be fine.)I still remember the panicked visions I had as we drove out of the society gates, of Nikki tearfully weeping for her mother who was far, far away. Fifteen minutes into the party and seven panicked phone calls later (yeah, I know I'm THAT mother.sigh.)my parents assured me that Nikki was absolutely fine and could I please put a lid on it and just enjoy the evening. There had been no tears when we left or thereafter and after devouring her dinner, Nikki was now cheerfully engaged in poking the eyes of her doll out, her favorite activity at the time (the chappie who said that stuff about sugar and spice and all things nice sure would've changed his mind if he'd met my little girl).

"I think YOU are the one with separation anxiety", a friend who was with us at the party announced as she watched me gaze anxiously at my phone for the umpteenth time. "Try to relax will you!"
And so I did. I had a drink. I ate an canape. I began to enjoy the music. And I was finally beginning to rid myself of the clouds of worry that had hovered miserably over me all evening when my phone rang. It was my dad.
"What is it?" I yelped as I answered, the canape turning to ashes in my mouth.
It was Nikki of course. She had been absolutely fine till that dreaded hour of the day, or rather, night: bedtime. Apparently, S, conveniently forgetting my laboriously spelled out instructions had vamoosed as soon as Nikki was through with her dinner and instead of going to bed soon after her meal as she was used to, Nikki had continued playing for well over an hour post dinner. As a result she was overtired, sleepy and cranky by the time my parents finally tried putting her to bed and not seeing either P or me around she decided to let them have it with a series of high pitched wails and cries for her mama and dada. Distraught with her crying my poor parents took her down to the park and took turns walking her up and down where she finally calmed down albeit temporarily. Several failed attempts to get her to sleep later, they finally called us. We rushed home only to find that Nikki had finally cried herself to sleep just minutes before we reached and was curled up miserably in her cot. She didn't sleep well through the night though, and woke up crying quite a few times with a tortured look on her face, refusing to be comforted by either of us. I wore my own tortured look for the next full week and needless to say, that was the beginning and end of any fanciful notions we may have had about being super cool parents cum party animals.

We took to going out in the day since Nikki was absolutely fine being left in the company of her grandparents then and took turns going out in the evenings. Or we planned evenings in child friendly locales so that we could take her along as well and life went on an usual. Until the weekend before last when we found ourselves in the possession of passes for a rock concert. P, the eternal optimist, suggested we try taking Nikki along, after all she was old enough now and our concerted efforts to avoid repeated replays of Rythmic Rhymes From The Animal Kingdom by getting her to listen to our music had ensured that she was developing an ear for rock too. And so we went. And had a blast! The venue was a well spaced out open air amphitheater with sprawling lawns all around interspersed with cobbled pathways and little tinkling fountains making it an eminently child friendly venue. We found ourselves a grassy spot, not too close to the speakers and settled down to enjoy the evening. Only to find that we were being quite outdone by our little headbanger who'd really gotten into the groove and was dancing around shaking her booty and thoroughly enjoying the music. She even got hold of some empty beer cans halfway through and was jumping around with them looking for all purposes like she'd just swigged down the contents, making another couple nearby give us incredulous, shocked looks.
"People nowadays, they just don't pay any attention to their kids!" I heard them mutter as they threw me a disapproving look. Which in a perverse sort of way made me feel like a REALLY cool mom. Because, you know, I'm SO not one.
And then after she'd had her dinner, Nikki obligingly went to sleep right around bedtime and stayed that way, enabling us to stay on till the very end when this amazingly talented band from Shillong played some of the best rock I've heard in a long long time. We were so kicked we actually considered going for the after-party post the show but then decided not to push our luck and went home instead.

The next weekend saw us at another concert, Gary Lawyer live this time round, paying a tribute to Elvis. And guess who turned out to be the biggest rock aficionado of all? Even though it was well past her bedtime by the time the concert ended, the youngest Elvis (and Gary) fan at the venue was enthusiastically clapping and going Woo-Hoo! after every number! She enjoyed the music so much that we dusted off some of our old Elvis CDs the next day and had our very own rock and roll party at home. I guess 'The Wheels on The Bus' are going to have a wait a while for their place in the music system!

Much encouraged with these recent successes, we're now seriously considering venturing out more often in the evenings with Nikki. Outdoorsy venues with great music work beautifully. Nikki as it turns out is quite the party animal and likes nothing better than hearing that we're going 'out in Nikkkkki's car!' as opposed to 'its bedtime!'
The quiet dinners and plays of yore are going to have to wait a while though. Not unless I can convince the parents to babysit again!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Back from hibernation!

Hola from Nikki-land! Yes I'm still alive and well, and more importantly (for me that is!) still blogging! I guess I ended up going on an unannounced blog break thanks to the myriad events that have happened over the last month or so. Even so, I hate these long blog breaks and I wish there was a way I could discipline myself to be more consistent when it comes to regularly updating the blog. Well there's hope yet since the New Year fever hasn't quite subsided and its not too late for some resolutions eh?
You've ALREADY resolved to blog more regularly- and TWICE at that, you say? Er, well I'm trying to get there. I am too! I actually wrote out no less than six drafts in the last couple of weeks but my attempts at publishing a post were always thwarted by that not-so-friendly neighborhood Mr Murphy who's been hanging around a little too often in my backyard of late. Two nights in a row this last week, as I typed out a post, the child and joy of my life who has been sleeping well for the last several months now, decided that sleeping through the night was passe and imposed bedtimes of 8.30 pm were strictly to be frowned upon. Its party time I say, she proclaimed accordingly, and went on to do just that resisting all attempts at walking, patting, rocking and singing her to sleep. And today, just a few minutes ago as I sat here typing during the nap time break that I get every afternoon, she woke up howling from her sleep and continued in that vein till I was a likely candidate for slip disc surgery from all the rocking. The terror remains with me still and even as I write now the tiniest wail (we live in a building teeming with sleepless kids) from an adjoining apartment sends shudders up my weakened spine.

Anyway its time to ring Mr Murphy out with the old and herald the new, which will hopefully see a whole lot more happening in this space. We've been up to a whole lot in this break, which thankfully, unlike the last long blog break was not due to any crises but more because of a whole lot of happy happenings :)Soon after Diwali we headed off for a much awaited vacation to God's own country and on our return jumped right into the pre-shaadi frenzy that preceded my sister's wedding. The wedding itself followed soon after and we buzzed into the New Year in a happy post wedding haze which continued right up to my birthday which I also celebrated this week. The post party glow still shimmers since January also sees us celebrating our anniversary later this month and I hope to be blogging about all of this and more as the month goes by. On that resolute (but cheery) note wish you all a Very Happy New Year! Hope had you great festive season and here's to a fabulous 2011 ahead for all of us!

Monday, November 8, 2010

And a very happy Diwaala to you too!

Hello there peeps! Its me again, here to wish you all a very happy Diwaala! That's how I've been greeting people on my second Diwaala and it never fails to send them into peals of laughter. The life and soul of the party, that's me! I thought I'd stop by The Mommy Woman's blog and spread some festive cheer around here as well. Besides the poor Mommy Woman needs a helping hand with her blog now and then, given her dismal track record at being regular with updates starring me and its been a while since I've dropped by so what better occasion than Diwaala to grace the blog with my super cute presence!

I've just had a wonderful second Diwaala and I celebrated it with loads of friends and family. I thought The Mommy Woman would be happy to note that I've more or less outgrown that little stranger anxiety thingie I went through in between but no! Really that woman is so hard to please! Take for example my encounter in the elevator with the friendly grandpa who lives right above us. Now I've always made it a point to studiously ignore any friendly overtures by said grandpa in the past but I decided Diwaala is as good a time as any to make amends and so when we happened to be in the elevator together and I happened to be standing right behind him I tried to be chummy by casually giving him a friendly swipe in the seat of his pants.He seemed quite amused too and I'm sure it would have been the start of a beautiful friendship if it hadn't been for that pesky Mommy Woman who suddenly started apologizing for some weird reason and totally ruined the moment. Or take that day in the restaurant where I was having a blast playing a new game with The Papa Man. The restaurant had these groovy chairs with big gaps in the backrest and I discovered this fun game where I would poke The Papa Man through one of the gaps and he would act all startled and make funny faces. We were having so much fun that I thought I should treat some of the other chappies in the restaurant to this fun game as well so I trotted off to the neighboring table and gave a jolly poke to a tubby looking fellow stuffing his face with some soup. He must have really enjoyed it coz he let out a strangled yelp and nearly swallowed his soup spoon and I was going to rev up the fun a few notches higher with another poke, when I noticed that The Mommy Woman had turned a delicate shade of purple and was doing that whole apology thing again. Really that woman can be such a ditz! First she was worried about my whole stranger anxiety phase, and now when I'm going all out to make my debut, as it were, on the social scene, she has a problem with that as well. Hmph! The other day that pest control chappie had stopped by and I was doing my best to keep an eye on him by following him around and giving him encouraging pats for a job well done and trying to get my hands on that goop he was sticking on the walls to see if it was A-grade material, and she got all hysterical and had me removed from the scene! I ask you! The woman has no appreciation whatsoever for a friendly helping hand around the house.

Take the other day when I saw her handing some vegetables to the cook and, deciding to offer my services, I took out some potatoes and onions from the vegetable basket in the kitchen and stacked them up on the counter, just in case the cook required them. Now how was I to know that poor chump of a cook would assume that The Mommy Woman had kept them there and chop them all? Next thing I know The Mommy Woman is doing the headless chicken act all over the kitchen, demanding to know what is to be done with 2kg each of extra chopped onions and potatoes. Really, how am I to know! She'll be asking me to look up recipes on Google next! I decided that the kitchen is probably not the place for me and went looking for that nice bai who does the jhaado pocha in our apartment and who always has a kind word for me. I love helping her out with the pocha and the dusting and I thought I'd lend her a helping hand by attacking a particularly nasty looking dirt stain on the floor with a soft cloth I found on the bed. I was happily scrubbing away (I SO love doing pocha!) when I heard a shriek and saw The Mommy Woman turning that familiar shade of purple (someone tell the woman that purple is so passe!)and then she grabbed the mop from my hands and started moaning about her beloved silk sari. I tried telling her that if she wants to avoid these misunderstandings she really shouldn't leave her things lying around like that but I don't think she quite got my point. She can be so obdurate sometimes, really. I must make some time to hop across to Landmark next weekend and get my own copy of What to Expect with The Mommy Women in the Toddler Years. I hope they have a section on the Terrible Thirties, because with The Mommy Woman behaving the way she has been these last few days, I'm going to need all the expert advice I can get!

As it is I have my hands full trying to keep The Mommy Woman busy in some constructive activities all day long so that she doesn't waste too much time idling away in front of the laptop. I try and put in an hour of reading with her everyday where I point out various objects in my picture books and make her tell me what each object is. Or I make her sing songs by telling her exactly which song I want with some innovative actions, and I get her to repeat each song a few times so that she gets each nuance perfectly right.
I even tried setting up a play date for her last week with a friend who has a Mommy Woman of her own, the same age as mine, but that didn't go so well. The thing is, being my usual helpful self, I thought I would help The Mommy Woman out with some of her household chores. I'd heard her cribbing about how she never gets enough time on weekends to do her grocery shopping, and there seemed to be a lot of groceries and stuff lying around at my friend's place, where we were having the play date so I thought I'll pick them up for The Mommy Woman and save her some time. I thought she would be happy at my thoughtful gesture but I should have known better. There were a range of emotions that flitted across her face when we were back home from the play date and she opened the diaper bag to find six teaspoons, one packet of sugar, a slab of butter and one tea cake in there, but happiness was not one of them.

Really, pleasing The Mommy Woman is next to impossible, I'm beginning to think. "I'm having a particularly tough time with The Mommy Woman these days" I said gravely to The Papa Man that evening "I don't think I can handle the pressure anymore."
"Ooh my little chatterbox, you've started talking so much these days! Chutter putter, chutter putter all day long! Soooo cute!" he gushed, cooing with delight and going into a complete mush overdrive as usual. Really is it too much to expect these people to at least try and understand what I'm trying to say for a change, instead of babbling like idiots every time I try and make a few statements? I guess not. Anyway, enough ranting for one post. I'm off now to spend some time with Chintu, my new friend and next door neighbor. He's been helping me make some delightful new additions to my vocabulary. Like that new phrase he taught me last week, "Abey Chup!" I'm not sure what it means exactly, but it must be something wonderful because The Mommy Woman went into a near dead swoon when I tried it last on that aging relative we'd gone to meet for Diwaala. Ooh I can't wait for Diwaala holidays to end and school to begin so I can try it on my teacher. She'll be impressed all right! Maybe then The Mommy Woman will finally be happy!