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I’ve been MIA for the last week and for good reason too.
The In-Laws left for Hajj on Monday night (Alhamdulillah). Needless to say, it was a madhouse at the MomOfRS household with relatives, friends and well-wishers dropping by to pay their respects and to request prayers on their behalf.

The in-laws had to attend a 40-day workshop on the procedures and rituals that need to be followed during the 40-day pilgrimage. They will, in fact be staying for 45 days, since this year is the year of Al-Hajj Al-Akbar. After attending a host of coaching classes, medical tests, vaccinations and the works, they were declared ready for the holiest of all journeys 🙂 .
Labaikallah humma labaik, labaika la shareeka labaik.

Since the trip was for 45 days, the MIL didn’t get a leave beforehand, so she had to work full-time on Monday, which was kind of sad, because we were hoping that she get some rest before the journey began (they had to leave for Mumbai around 1am Tuesday, check-in was at 7am and the flight departure was at 11am. The minute they land at Jeddah, they have a bus to Mecca and from there, they have to proceed for the first arkaan ).
But the rush of family and friends prevented her from getting a shut-eye even for five minutes 😦
The only upside was that the minute they landed in Mecca, all physical discomforts and tiredness was forgotten. They were excited, exhilarated and at peace 🙂

Not much of the peaceful scenario back home, I’m afraid.
Firstly, this is the first time in my nearly 6 years of married life that I’m left alone to manage the household all by myself 😐 . Earlier, there was the GMIL and after her, it was MIL who looked into the nitty-gritties of home-work. To add to my woes, possibly EVERYONE around me shared my low opinion on my capabilities 😦 . People consoled me by the dozens, volunteering their time and efforts, ready to babysit the twins and even come and stay with us till the in-laws return. It was actually very kind of them all…..but somewhere inside , I felt the deep urge to prove them all wrong.
Heck, its just 45 days, right?!
How can I not manage for a measly month and a half?
So what if I didn’t know till now how much we paid the maids?
So what if I didn’t know where the gas-cylinder books were kept or the milk coupons were?
So what if I shudder involuntarily at the thought of managing so many people on my own??
Today is the third day and I’m glad to say, we haven’t sunk yet. This ship still sails and how 😀 !!
The BF and the BIL are cooperating in a much better way than before…..ready to juggle work-hours and take up little responsibilities at home. The twins….well, no change in the twins, except that they keep asking for their grandparents, wondering why they aren’t back yet 😐

On my part, I want to redo the entire house by the time they return. I plant to buy new plants (because the all the old ones DIED. Yes, I managed to kill them all again 😦 ), just so that the terraces don’t look funny with all those empty pots.
I plan to refurbish the drawing room, add some cupboards to the kitchen (also get some pest-control done), clear up half the mess in my room, paint a wall bright orange, or maybe, we’ll just paint a wall with a nice jungle theme 😀 , visits all the relatives I never made time for before, take the kids to places we kept planning to take them to but never did (which does not mean malls and theaters!! These items are still off the list!) and essentially, make time for stuff I never made time for before. This includes a lot of home-improvement activities. I mean, the idea is to pleasantly surprise the in-laws when they return, not give them the proverbial cardiac 😀
I have two willing and  able assistants to fulfill these plans, we now await this weekend, when we will finally chalk out a plan on what all we need to do and how to go about doing it.
Its gonna be fun 🙂
The twins will of course, come under everyone’s feet, but what the hell, we’ll let them paint a wall by themselves 😀
Its sure gonna be fun.
Wait. I said that already 😐
What the heck, I’ll say it again 🙂

PS: Will do a proper (read : appropriately solemn) post on the in-law’s Hajj trip once they get back (with the pictures, I hope !). It is indeed a once in a lifetime opportunity and me and the BF seriously plan to put in our names for the next year’s list.

Thats all for today. Have a nice day you all. Be good 🙂

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(I wrote this post yesterday. Just before leaving for the day, I had hit Publish, but for some unknown reason, it didnt show up! Thanks Andrey fro letting me know. And oh, by the way, I have restricted access to wordpress from work…that means, I cannot preview my posts or run spell checks. So kindly excuse any formatting errors or spelling mistakes 🙂 )

I’ve been away for long, but I had my reasons.

One, I needed to give my eyes some rest and secondly, I had to attend a training in Communication Skills (it helps to improvise on the existing, doesn’t it?)
So, the training was on rapport building and communication skills.
Till last week, I had nothing to do work-wise and this training came my way, so I applied for it. Its not as if I needed it, but after the first session, I realized that there’s a lot that I need to learn by way of being assertive (years of being a doormat does that to you). The trainer was a dashing woman so full of life that I feel like a relic in front of her. Whats this with personality development trainers, really?! Why do they have to be these super-energetic, running-on-revital people? There’s this other lady I once knew (who is a clinical psychologist, by the way) who conducted such a training for us ages ago. She was so ebullient, so full of vigour and vitality that me and the rest of the gang gave off the impression of being sacks of potatoes ready to be shipped off to the market. By the way, we were freshers then 😐
Anyhow, since the training is over now, I’ll be jumping into the project headlong (I just pray its deep enough 😐 )

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I have work to do, read up on the project I’ve been assigned to, go through the documents explaining the technology it is built on and the history of the project since its inception (how utterly boring but how essential !!). Problem is, I’ve been idling for too long now and probably I need some time to sync myself with the ‘working’ people again! And by the way, I do all this reading while precariously balancing the new glasses on the bridge of my nose. Why balance?? Because just after buying the said glasses and donning them in front of the mirror, did I realize that *gasp* my ears are not aligned!! So the said glasses sit in a slightly skewed manner on my nose…tilting to the right. If left like that,  they hopelessly slide down my  nose (damn you shiny nose!! You are no olfactory sense…just an oil-factory I guess)

And oh, I also bought spiffy new glares to protect my eyes from the harsh sunlight (I lost my older pair a month back and was driving around without sunglasses. Yes, yes I know *hanging head in shame* ). So now that I have glasses to protect me from the monitor/TV radiation and glasses to protect me from the sun, I guess I have all that I could ever need (except for maybe the penthouse with the attached swimming pool. Then, life would be complete 😀 )
Will post a snap of me with the glasses soon…atleast to show you how much skewed it really is!

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I got a movie from a friend once, an animation flick for kids called “How To Train Your Dragon”. The kids have seen it around 4-5 times by now.

I have seen it 8-9 times!!

What to do?!! I LOVE IT!!!

Its this story about a viking boy called Hiccup and a dragon of type ‘Night Fury’ called Toothless! I know! How can you resist such fun 😀 ?!!

And one more thing…..I was quite taken in by the voice of the guy doing the voice-over for Hiccup. His name is Jay Baruchal and I found that I have already seen a movie of his (She’s Out Of my League) where I didn’t think much of him (too lanky and I didn’t like the slackness of his mouth)! Just goes to show how looks can be deceptive 😐

As Hiccup, I LOVED his faint tone of derision in every dialogue.

Do watch it. It will please your kids just as much 🙂

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Do you know whats the most important accessory/component of your bike?? Guess what gets stolen the moment it is left ‘outside’, in view?
No, not the helmet, nor the rear-view mirrors.
Its that little rag you keep tucked in a corner for wiping the dust off your bike . Yes. That piece of old discarded banian or those fancy yellow/brown napkins sold at traffic signals. They are the ones most likely to be flicked off. After losing the ‘nth’ one this week, I’m trying my best to figure out the allure of that rag. I mean, what does one think when pilfering other’s bike of their chosen dust-cloths? Its not as if one needs to buy them! The worst part is that the pilferers are possibly the people you know! The ones who park their bikes right next to yours in the buildings parking area. After loads of disappearing rags, I’ve decided to keep a vigilant eye to spot those people who fleece fellow neighbours of their dust-cloths.
And when I find them…..I’ll…I’ll…drat it!! What can I do?

Any suggestions??

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This weekend was hectic and I wont bore you with the details (most of which you might have memorized by now  based on earlier posts 😀 ). But we did have a scare with GMIL’s health. A BAD scare. Last Friday, she had practically collapsed. There was no sound from her and she couldn’t swallow even water (which kept dribbling down the side of her mouth) ! On Saturday, we had doctors visiting, who immediately diagnosed her to be down with a throat infection which had percolated down to her kidneys! We were terrified, but the doctors assured us that it was curable. The GMIL was put on IV and some solid high-powered injections were administered to her. As of this morning, she looked relatively better, though she’s still having trouble swallowing.
Since granny is unable to talk or communicate much, we could not diagnose her problem in time, which caused the infection to spread to her kidneys. Everyone at home feels rotten about it 😦
I feel worse, because I know that the kids had throat infection a couple of weeks back. I shouldn’t have allowed them to enter their Big-dadi’s room, let alone kissing her. But thats what the kids did and I think, inadvertantly transferred the infection to the old lady.
Hoping and praying hard that she recovers. Kindly send your prayers and good thoughts her way too 🙂
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The BF’s  aunt (who is staying with us since the GMIL had her stroke) had an hysterectomy on Saturday. It meant that the MIL and FIL did a double duty of shuttling between home and hospital. I had the responsibility of managing the house in their absence, a task that I’m usually good at. But last Saturday was harrowing because the maids turned up late, the twins wanted me to play with them and the GMIL was rather uncomfortable and was groaning throughout. I also had to make breakfast/lunch and manage the visiting guests. I think that I should take the BF’s advise and go in for some serious time management trainings 🙂

Thats all for now ….will be a little more regular this week (fingers crossed 😀 !!)

Have a GREAT week ahead !

Love,

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Weekend Updates

Thank You Thank You Thank You All.
For the wishes and good vibes sent our way. I’m really sorry for not replying to comments (being lucky that I got to read them in the first place).
GMIL is stable now (if not completely recovered) and each improvement brings with it a sigh of relief.
The last couple of weeks have been rather hectic. Matters at work didn’t help…there is still no end date defined for my release from the project. Rather, workload has been humongous and I’m turning up at home around 9pm each night. The BF and BIL are also similarly caught up and we are one busy household as of now, trying our best to hang on to our jobs and also give time to granny. Not a day goes by without guests visiting our place (at all odd times, if I may add). Since we aren’t home, the nanny has been assigned the role of serving tea and snacks. The poor girl has been rather accommodating with the additional work. Fact is, she’s quite attached to the GMIL, because the old lady was forever showering the girl with love and attention (and a little money on the side 😀 ). The girl was very upset initially, when granny had suffered the stroke. But slowly, like all of us, she has pulled herself together.
It has been difficult to see the granny go through the pain and discomfort each day. So great is her pain that a strong sleeping pill prescribed by the doctor himself failed to take any effect on her. The doctor was shocked when we told him about it the next day! There are times when we feel guilty of going about our lives as she lays there writhing. But then, would our staying by her side make her feel any better? Every time a guest visits, the old lady starts sobbing. It upsets her to have people see her in her present state. Its worse because she cant express her anguish, her tongue refuses to move. And we cant just shoo away people, can we?
There are times, when we ask ourselves why the poor old lady has to go through all this.Doubting the will of Allah is easy enough. But then again, there is redemption in every kind of suffering. We cannot and should not question the Almighty. All we can do for now is to make it easier for her as much as possible. By the way, granny moved her right-arm yesterday. Yay!! Take that Mr.Skeptical-BF!! She even looks a little fresher than before and even attempts to speak up, though the words are garbled. It is rather heartening to know that she at least makes an attempt to talk!
Since we are on positive news, I’ll mention that the release we were working on (maniacally) for the last couple of months is finally through. Its almost like a HUGE load off our shoulders and we can get back to living a regular life (read, start blogging). The twins are getting snarkier by the day. Shobs demands that he be served his cup of tea or milk on a tray. Handing it over to him just like that is not tolerated. He either bursts into tears or throws a major attitude by refusing to drink unless served on a tray. Lui has become more and more stubborn and intolerant. Any word or gesture of ours that goes against her will is met with a loud announcement of ,”Mumma…aap mujhe roz roz satate. aap bad girl hai”.
“That’s part of my mom-profile, kid”, I retort back (not that it makes an iota of difference on the brat!)
By the way, I’ve been a little sneaky with the kids these days. I get them to do chores around the house by claiming that they are now BIG kids, since they’ve had their birthday. The logic is, whoever has a birthday, becomes older and can do what grown-ups do. This immediately has the kids scrambling to do my bidding 😀 . They even have arguments over who will rush to switch on the light bulb 😐 !
Things had been hectic, but we are slowly getting back to normal. We now have two maids for the GMIL, one comes during the day and the other during the night. The morning one is useless though. She refuses to dress granny’s wound, saying it makes her feel icky. She refuses to feed the old lady anything that has a shred of non-veg in it. She is happy to sit on the sofa and stitch hooks on blouses while the MIL and aunt rush to the GMIL’s bed on every call. After two weeks of suffering her, it was the doctor who finally suggested that we get rid of her, since she wasn’t doing the massages/exercises for the granny that he had strictly instructed her to do! Hopefully, the bureau will send someone more competent this week!
As always,this weekend too was spent in regular weekly chores. I didn’t get to do any extra cooking that I had planned, but I did get some time to sort through the twin’s cup-board and discard clothes they don’t fit into anymore. It was a major activity I was putting off since ages. Glad that it finally got done.Other than that, I watched some late-night movies on the laptop. “The Shawsank Redemption” (I can’t believe I never watched this gem of a movie before! I didn’t even read the book 😯 .Which planet am I on?!!), “Ocean’s Twelve” (not a patch on “Ocean’s Eleven”) and a stupid, STUPID movie called “Luv ka The End”. Avoidable. Majorly.
So that was my weekend. How was yours??



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So here’s the update on the weekend , in continuation from my last post 🙂

Warning : Long post alert !!
1) I took an off from work on Friday. There were many things to catch up with , stuff to buy and the twin’s school to visit. So after a quick round-up of the cooking tasks, I made a dash for the twin’s school (The twins were meanwhile busy snoozing their hearts out. Their Diwali vacations had begun 😀 )
As usual, I was surprised at all that the teacher had to say…in a way, I was prepared to be surprised. I know my kids are totally different people at home and at school. But this time, I was a little disturbed to know that my kids are lagging behind in the art department. Though they hold a crayon or do finger painting, they are yet to gain control over their fingers. Lui tends to draw slashes across the page, totally ignoring the bird or fish or elephant that she is supposed to colour. On the other hand, Shobs draws a tiny speck in a corner of the page and proclaims that he is done 😐 ! The teacher mentioned that this is indicative of their personalities in the long run. Lui will be brash and uncontrolled whereas Shobs will be timid and hesitant . Needless to say, I was a little worried, but a little action now can prevent this damage. Lui needs to learn restraint and Shobs needs to let go. Talk about opposites 🙄 . This is something that I need to work on and am working on since I got back home! Thankfully, I have a surplus of chart-papers and drawing sheets, courtesy of planning meets at work 🙂

2) I visited my company after a looong time. It felt good to walk through the familiar stairwells, meet old friends, sip on coffee, the taste of which brought back memories of times when a large gang of us friends used to meet up at break times. Those were wonderful days….alas, most of the people are now spread in different buildings around the city…some even in another city. The office looked empty without all those familiar faces 😦
I did get to collect my Diwali gift though : A wall-clock. Reactions on it varied from shock to disbelief to resigned acceptance 😀

3)Friday was also the BIL’s birthday! And since he LOVES Chinese cuisine, what better gift than to rustle up some quick Chinese dishes to tickle the taste buds and satisfy the palate ?!
The MIL and FIL strictly abhor Chinese 😦 . The GMIL refuses to look at the stuff. The BF eats it, but if he has another option, he would just as easily give it up! That usually leaves me and the BIL, the only two who LOVE Chinese food. Also, once in a while, the BIL would parcel something up for me and we two would gobble it down while ruing the fact that no one else appreciates the goodness of it all 🙂
So I decided on the menu, made my purchases after the visit to my office, picked up all that was necessary and made my way home. The twins didn’t expect to see me home on a weekday and were overjoyed when I dropped in home in the middle of the day. I swear, there is no better welcome in this world than the open arms and radiant smile of your kids. I swear I fall in love with them each time I lay my eyes on them 🙂 which just about summarizes how badly I’m crazy about them 😀
Anyhow, the twins refused to let me rest, so after making sure they were fed and off to sleep, I made my way to the kitchen to start the preparation. The menu was :- Chicken Schezwan noodles, Prawn Fried Rice, Chilli-chicken (of course!) and Gobi-Manchurian (gravy). The dessert was a layered chocolate/Vanilla cake topped with chocolate icing (the cake appeared more exciting in print than in 3D 😦 ) .I set the cauliflower florets and chicken to marinate, and then proceeded with the cake. An hour and a half later, the cake was done. After that, it was a non-stop cooking marathon till I made sure all the dishes were ready, which they were, by 8:30 pm. A quick call was made to the BIL who assured that he would be home soon. The BF would be delayed, but then it was okay….it wasn’t his birthday 😀 . BUT, we did wait for him to come back before cutting the cake 😀
As for the dinner, it was a total hit. The FIL, who never eats Chinese, had two helpings of the noodles and praised the other dishes to no end. The MIL, who was initially reluctant to even taste the noodles, not only had it that day, but also the leftovers the next day 😀
Nothing, and I mean nothing  beats the satisfaction of making a good meal for the family and I’m glad I took the time and effort to do it. The evening was a success (if I say so myself). Yeah yeah, I know! I is the Raawck!! 😀

4) Nothing much happened on Saturday, except maybe the minor case of me almost killing the instructor and myself in a near fatal car-crash 😐
Like a true-blue rookie, I did what most freshers  while driving do – under cases of severe stress, we push down on the accelerator instead of the brake !!
Anyhow, fact of the matter is, I got over-confident. It was my fifth day. I could drive easily at a speed of 40kmph (OMG) and even the instructor was happy with my performance. Then came a slope where I was asked to take a left turn. In my eagerness, I changed the gear and stepped on the accelerator. The instructor yelled “Brake, Madam, brake!!” and in my nervousness, I stepped harder on the accelerator. A Car was coming from the left and the old man at the driver’s seat nearly suffered a cardiac arrest as he saw a car hurtling at him in full-speed. Thankfully, the instructor pressed down on his brake before we could crash! A few minutes of silence ensued, in which I could see snippets of my life floating in front of my eyes. The instructor was furious and gave me an ear-full. I didn’t mind it, since I knew I was at fault. The rest of the drive back to the centre was uneventful.
The BIGGEST mistake of it all was confiding in the BF about the near-accident. No need to tell you all how he reacted ! Suffice to say, I would need to buy my own car for practice now 😀

5) Did I mention that I prayed hard that no visitors should drop by? Well, I think the Almighty up there heard me just fine 🙂 . We didn’t have guests, the maids dropped by on time, I played loads with the twins and after ages, spent a very relaxed Saturday 🙂

6) Got up early on Sunday….I think it was because of crackers bursting off early. I had a lunch appointment with a girl who, we are hoping, becomes a new member of the family 🙂 . After breakfast, I made lunch, got the twins bathed and dressed and got dressed for the meeting.
But first, a little background on the girl.

We’ve been actively looking at marriage profiles of girls for the BIL. Unfortunately, the BIL has not had much interactions with girls. He’s tongue-tied and shy in front of them. We were trying our best to figure out what kind of girl he prefers and one day he confessed that he himself is not sure. That put us in a dilemma…because like I told the MIL, we aren’t getting married , he is. So its totally vital that he participate in this hunt and take an interest in the profiles. We almost had to shove profiles under his nose and make sure he takes a good look at the snaps. The BIL would take a quick peep, say no and when questioned why, would sheepishly reply that he’s not sure, but he definitely didn’t want that girl as his wife. Obviously, me and the MIL were on a constant eye-rolling mission around this guy 😐

One day, the MIL spotted this girl (lets call her AM) at a funeral. Ever the watchful woman, MIL liked what she saw and immediately made inquiries about her. Shortly, we got hold of her profile and it was another week before the BIL laid eyes on the snaps. Initially, he was non-committal, humming and hawing and annoying MIL and me to no end. Then one fine day, he asked MIL if there were any updates . MIL pointed out that he was the one should be updating us! So the BIL magnanimously asked MIL to take the matter forward. MIL immediately called up the girl’s family and initiated the talks. The girl’s family were pretty keen too and though no dates were set, the two families agreed to meet up soon.

In the meanwhile, MIL asked the girl’s family if it was okay for the prospective bride and groom to meet. They said yes and we immediately pestered the BIL to fix an appointment and meet up with AM. The BIL kept postponing the meeting, obviously rattled to bits about seeing a girl for marital purposes for the first time in his life. After 10 days of his dilly-dallying, the MIL got fed up and fixed an appointment with the girl for the next day.  The BIL had no option but to oblige. The day of the meeting, he was pensive, worried, had butterflies in his tummy and a pleading look in his eyes, begging us to let him off. But the MIL firmly opened the door and asked him to get his butt to the venue ASAP! Before he left,I gave him a couple of topics that he could talk on, a tip on taking chocolates along and also a warning on what NOT to bring up in the first meeting.

AM had a terrific impact on the BIL. What else could come to our mind when this guy walks into the house in the evening and declares he is going to marry only her and no one else! What shocked us more?? The generally shy and reserved BIL spoke to AM for more than 2 hours , and immediately told her that he wanted to marry her, asked her if she was interested and when she said she needed to ask her family, firmly demanded if it was she who was getting married or her family!! He asked her for her reply and when she was uncertain, he was magnanimous enough to give her 10 minutes to think and answer 🙄 . AM was stunned, I’m sure, but surprisingly, she did call him up after 10 minutes and gave a tentative yes (crazy, I tell you 😀 ). The MIL nearly fainted with shock when she heard all this! The FIL refused to believe it all and the BF gave a prayer of thanks that finally, finally the BIL was ready to settle down 🙂

Whew! Talk about being fast-forward 😀 !!

Anyhow, so I called up AM and asked if I could meet up with her on Sunday. The venue was a mall near her place and since it was a long drive from my place, I left early. I settled myself at the food-court and waited for her to come. I like to observe people and I wanted to see AM before she sees me 😀 . She turned up shortly and this is what my impression about her was :-

  • Taller than me
  • Simple
  • Straightforward
  • Honest
  • Big eyes (that welled up with tears at the mention of her father, who expired a few months back)
  • Earthy
  • Demure
  • Reserved
  • NOT a blabber-mouth, unlike the woman sitting opposite to her

Well, that sums up most of her in the first visit. We did talk, or you could say, I talked, I asked, I clarified and she mostly smiled shyly and nodded her head along 😀 .  But towards the end of the meeting, I could see what the BIL saw in her….her simplicity, the maturity of her speech , her frank opinion on the BIL (bordering on the favourable 😉  , because, frankly, she didn’t like to be pushed into a corner for her answer. Of course 🙂 ). The BIL cannot be faulted for being smitten *sigh* ……I think he’s experiencing his first rush of love! 😀 . For his sake alone, we are seriously hoping that this alliance comes through! Next week, she brings her mother back from her uncle’s place. The weekend after that, we go visiting her family. And probably the week after that, her family comes by our place.

And after that…..well…you’ll just have to watch this space for more updates 😛

The rest of Sunday evening was spent in discussions, plannings, what-ifs and what-nots! And that, my friends , is how I spent my weekend.

AND. Since its the eve of Diwali , I know very well what I’ll be doing this weekend. Meeting friends and consuming tons of faraal, of course 😀

How about you all??



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Warning : LONG post alert !!

Hello  people 🙂

Welcome back to the weekend updates from the MomOfRS household. Nothing of much importance happened, other than me yanking the hair off my head after the twins, running around for household chores, buying grocery (which my friends wonder why the BF and BIL cant do. *Sigh* Its a long story 😦 ), tending to the granny and the twins (Nanny bunking. YET.AGAIN 😐 ) and barely getting 18 hours of sleep from Friday night to Sunday night. And whatever I did get, was broken by

1) nightmares from Lui.

2) Crying-for-his-mumma Shobs

3)Worrying about over-sleeping and not getting up in time. So between 12 in the night and 6 in the morning, I wake up at least thrice to check if my alarm was set right or not.

Anyhow, I’ll quickly (hehe, just kidding 😀 ) summarize the jam packed weekend for posterity’s sake. So one day , when I’m too old to walk across the room, I’ll sit on one corner of my bed, open my laptop, connect to the web and marvel on the days that saw me busy as a bee 😀

1) Friday evening, I caught a few snippets of the serial “Kuchh to log kahenge”. Something seemed familiar about it. I mean, surely there have been loads of doctor-doctor, doctor-nurse romances in movies and serials (that reminds me, I’m yet to see a more authentic ‘Hospital’ saga than DD’s Lifeline. Does anyone remember that? It featured Ila Arun as the dope addicted doctor). I hunted a bit of info on the serial and what did I find?! The serial’s a blatant rip-off on Dhoop-Kinare. Dhoop-Kinare !! I mean, I remember fighting for the video cassettes at our local shopping centre. The guy had a diary of people who had booked for the series in advance…it was first come, first serve. So popular was it that practically everyone knew Ahmer (Rahat Kazmi) and Zoya (Marina Khan)!! Anyone who has lived in North India in the nineties would know what I’m talking about! Its a pity that we in India  can’t come up with original, block-buster tele-dramas 😦 !!

2) Since I was on the Web, I caught up with news on my favorite politician 😀 .

Mayavati

Did you check out the size of her statue ?!  The only thing larger than that would be her ego, I guess! Inflated. There’s no other word for it! Plus, is it just me or do you too see that her statue overshadows BR Ambedkar’s and Kanshi Ram’s ?!

3) Saturday morning, I woke up early, as usual. Tended to GMIL and went about the business of cooking, cleaning and minding the twins (who believe me, are totally non-cooperative when I’m home 😐 ) The nanny came in by 11:30 and thankfully, I could take a break, have a cuppa and get dressed to meet BFS (after ages 🙄 ) and shop for groceries and stuff for GMIL. In between, I also had a show-down with the BF, where I walked out of the argument mid-way, seeing that it was leading nowhere. I really , really feel the in-laws should have sent the BF away from them for a a few years ….or maybe at least long enough for him to learn to put his clothes in the cup-board 😀 . Too many years of the MIL and GMIL doing his work has resulted in a hubby who feels deprived if his wife doesn’t put away his stuff!

4) Met BFS after a looong time. Its a pity that we get to meet so rarely, living in the same city 😦 .But we did cover up for the missing time, catching up with each other’s life, with me ranting about the BF and his lack of homely responsibilities and BFS talking about her life, job and her family. It was a time well spent and I do hope we get to meet more often now.

5) BFS accompanied me for the shopping. There are some things that are cheaper in the wholesale markets (Like diapers for the GMIL which are sold for half the MRP !!)and that was where I was headed to. I bought a load of other household stuff at the same place. Alas, the store did not have pulses or grains and I thought of buying them from a store near my place. Since it was a weekend (and close to Diwali) the shopping area was packed with people. It was with much pushing and shoving that BFS and me were able to make our way out of the lanes and towards my park. Dropped BFS halfway to her home and dangling my legs on both sides of the bike (in my defense, your honour, there was no space on the foot-rest!) I made my way home, where after briefly washing my face with cold water, I crashed out. But not for long.

6) I had a splitting head-ache because of which I got up. The nanny served me tea (bless the girl) and my eyes could finally focus. I think the heat of the day got to me. The twins wanted me to play with them, but I could barely keep my eye-lids open 😦 . Thankfully, I brightened up within an hour. Played with them for a while and then set about laying dinner for the family. The twins were in no mood to sleep, so I watched a few nursery rhymes with them on the laptop, then read them a story from the new story-book I’d purchased a while back. We finally crashed out around 12.

7) Sunday was eventful. More than I would have liked it to be. Woke up at 5 am to make breakfast parcel for the in-laws who were leaving for another town by 6. Since the FIL does not prefer bread, I made chapatis and bhindi 🙂 . By 6:30, the cook came in to make the regular chapatis for the day. By the time she was ready to leave, GML was up and I had to set up the bathroom for her ablutions. After she was in the bathroom, I cleaned up her room (alcove, actually ), made her bed and swept the house. Since GMIL takes her own sweet time in the bathroom (sometimes up to 45 minutes), I went to my room to wait for her to come out. BIG MISTAKE!!

One look at the bed and I settled on it for a while, being sleepy from waking up early. The GMIL, on her behalf, completed her wash earlier than usual and started calling out to me. Alas, I didn’t hear her. By the time I jolted out of my sleep, it was good 10 minutes in which the granny had yelled herself hoarse. Worse part was that when I did come in to help her out of the bathroom, she started sobbing 😦 . Made me feel rotten…..

8 ) Quickly made breakfast for the BF and granny. BIL had left for work early. I made lauki-curry for lunch and wrapped up my kitchen tasks. Woke the kids and did my best to get them bathed and dressed. They weren’t helping me at all 😀 . The BF, meanwhile slept through all this. And when he did wake up, he got calls from various people and had to rush out . *Sigh*…sometimes, I wonder if I’m the only one who doesn’t get to spend a Sunday the way she wants 😐

9) We had guests. An elderly couple who had come to meet the GMIL. They are relatives of the FIL. Since they came around 12:45, lunch was a must. This put me in a bit of a tizzy, since I was planning on feeding everyone the curry and chapatis. But with guests, GMIL expected us to be as gracious as possible! So in spite of the kids howling for attention, I had to rush to the kitchen and rustle up some more veggies and make rice. I’ll be honest and confess that I wasn’t a little bit glad about all the extra work 😦 . Moreover, the twins started screaming for attention and GMIL was reminding me again about serving the guests lunch, so in my harried state, I took the twins to my room and locked them in while I did my best to hasten with lunch. The lady guest came in and started chiding me on my rude behavior with the twins. Thankfully, before I could blow my top and remind her that she was the reason for this mess, the BF walked in. The twins immediately calmed down and settled down to play with him while I scurried between the hall and kitchen feeding the guests and the granny (for the record, our apartment is a joint operation on two apartments giving our flat a ‘U’ look if seen from above. So while the drawing room of one apartment has been retained for guests, the kitchen of the other is used for our regular cooking. So if someone calls from the drawing room, we cannot hear it in the kitchen. So I had to make trips between the two places to make sure the guests and granny were fed well).

10) Post lunch, I tried  to put the twins down for a nap. Lui obliged, but Shobs was reluctant to sleep, acting like the energizer bunny (he is one, actually 😀 ). When he finally did doze off, so did I. I had settled the guests in the in-laws room for their siesta earlier. Couldn’t sleep much because I was worried I’d oversleep and miss out on making tea for the guests. So I bustled out, made tea, served it up with biscuits and seriously prayed that the guests leave for the day 😦 . Once they did, I settled with vegetable-sorting for the week. Once the cook came in, I asked her to make Veg-pulao and asked the BF to get curd. After the cook left, I called up the MIL to check when she would be back. MIL replied that they were close to Pune and were getting another relative along (the FIL’s sister). I could have kicked myself for not making that call before the cook left 😦 . Anyhow, since I hate wastage and had made sure the dinner was sufficient for family, I hadn’t put into consideration feeding an extra guest. Amends had to be made. Dinner had to be stretched. But how?? I thought for some time and came up with the idea of making sooji-halwa, an all time favourite with everyone at home and a filler to boot (plus, it doesn’t take that long to cook). Rustling up the dish, I realized that I’d spent more time in the kitchen that day than I had planned. Not that I don’t like cooking, but for some reason, I just want to take a break from it all….

Once the MIL was home, I served dinner and narrated my tiring tale to her. She was immediately sympathetic and ordered me to be off to bed at the soonest. I thanked her and asked the BF to mind the twins while I settled for the night.

Alas, the kids thought otherwise. So they came into the room and begged me to play with them, even as I begged them to leave me alone. The BF, oblivious to my plight, sat and watched TV with his family at the other end of the house, in the drawing room. By 11:45pm, I did think of giving him a call and yelling my heart out….but realized that the effort wasn’t worth it. I don’t particularly remember anything after that.

Monday morning, I was up and about at 6 as usual.

This has been one of the most tiring weekends ever. Somehow, I see no charm in these two days of the week, except maybe spending the time with kids. But the exhaustion I feel towards the end of it all makes me lethargic on Mondays, when I have to report back to work. BFS asked me if working was really, really important to me. And know what I answered? Yes it is. Because you see, I get to sit in one place for as long as I want . Thats the only rest I get throughout the week 😀

AND. Now that I have whined my heart out, I feel better. Much better. If you have taken the time to read till here, I thank you for being a patient audience 🙂 . Hope you all had a better weekend !




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I Need To Clear The Air

….regarding this post.

I received a lot of comments for it and it even evoked a response from, wonders will never cease, Dad!!

Unfortunately, after going through the comments and then re-reading the post, I realized with horror that in my hurry to hit the Publish button, I left out many of the minor details which made the post lop-sided in my favour. I painted a rather grim image of the GMIL and my travails in her presence, the result of which, I received many empathizing comments and also a heart-felt, anguish-filled one from Dad.

I apologize. Because I had no idea then how contrived my outburst looked !!

But, the truth is far from it, at least from where I stand now. True, I felt bad then. True, her behavior was brusque, but then, that was only because she valued her family so. She would care two-hoots about my job, but it would concern her more if the men in the family didn’t get their meals on time 🙂 . Keeping them fed and doing their bidding made her happy. This attitude was not just an obsession, it was a way of life. That is how they were taught to treat men in their families and that is exactly what she expected of me. On my part, I come from a VERY different background, like chalk and cheese. I was unused to being spoken to rudely and that too from someone who was a family member! Also, being the last child of my parents, I was a pampered brat 😀  (this you have to agree to, Dad !!) Alas, I also had this habit of asking the BF to run around and do his own work, pick his own clothes, help around the house and generally be of assistance. Obviously, this didn’t go too well with the granny 😀 . Her favourite grand-child was turning into a “Joru-Ka-Ghulam”, this after she treated him like the most delicate petal of her carefully preserved flower/family!! Not done at all 😀 !

Jokes apart, fact remains that GMIL comes from an illiterate, village background. Working women, time-constrained women, away-from-home women are not the types that go down easy with her. Though she has never objected to me or the MIL working, her only demand was that in lieu of our absence, we had to cover up whatever other homely responsibilities that came our way. Obviously, this was difficult since I have a full-time job (though, I was a full-time cook for the family before the twins were born). So I hired a maid, a nanny and a cook. Life became easier for me and just a tad complicated for her, because staying at home, she would have to monitor all the three!! I’m sure their casual attitude and callous ways troubled her more than my mere absence 🙂 . So the minute the MIL stepped into the house and after that when I did, we got to hear an earful on which maid did what !! Add to that the chaos of the kids! Its a wonder she herself didn’t give up and run for cover!

In all, I would say that it helps to have a senior person in the house. They bring about a stability which is otherwise difficult to maintain. Granny’s gruff ways also helped me team up with the MIL. So where people usually have scuffles with their in-laws, I have an amicable relationship with mine. We bond over talk on who was treated worse 😉 .  Also, irrespective of what treatment I received at her hands, fact remains that she gave up her comfort time for the twins. She gave up her afternoon siestas if the kids refused to sleep. She ate only when the kids were fed. She took a bath only after bathing the two (GMIL refused to let the maids or anyone else bathe the children till they were a year old) .At the age of 80+, this is a big sacrifice.

And for that, like it or not, I’m abundantly grateful to her.

And maybe this is why, when I see her detached from all this, I miss the old days. She may not realize it, but we do need her presence in our daily life. It added that much spice to our otherwise boring days 🙂 .

And for comments which held me in high esteem, what can I say? I’m sorry for shattering your faith in me 😦



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This post has been lying in the drafts for quite some time now. I add to it, then delete it. I think of hitting publish and then pull back again. I’m not sure if I should be putting it out here for anyone to read and then I think I should, since I feel so strongly about it.

And then, I just decided to do it today……….

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It is funny you know, the way life takes a sudden turn and you are forced to rethink on your thought process. How something which seemed mammoth-like earlier now just appears like dust particles – insignificant! How an earlier humiliation now seems like a miniscule scratch on a well-worn slipper!

Lately, I find myself thinking about and analysing my relationship with my two MILs. This December, I’ll complete 5 years of married life and 5 years of living that life as a DIL, day in and day out. I’ll admit that it isn’t easy. It never was.  But life is much better now 🙂 and there is some cheer in that confession 🙂

Within a couple of weeks of my wedding, everyone at home resumed their work, except me, who was jobless, the BIL who was studying and the GMIL. A simple chore of asking me to ‘give’ breakfast to the BIL would comprise of the following actions by the GMIL –

1) Call me out from my room.

2) Ask me to take the food out to the other end of the house where BIL was studying.

3) The BIL would refuse breakfast, I would come back and report to the GMIL. She would order me to make something alternate for him.

4) I make something new, take it to the BIL, who would calmly explain that he was not hungry and if he was, he would come and take his breakfast.

5) I report back to GMIL and she would ask me to make him tea. I say he doesn’t want it. She argues that he said that about breakfast and not tea.

6) I make tea and take it to the BIL. He looks at me as if I’ve gone bonkers. No words spoken. I come back and inform the same to the GMIL.

7) She asks me to make him juice, since he doesn’t want tea. I almost start, but the BIL drops by and clearly tells the GMIL that he is in NO mood for food OR drink because the GMIL had already given him breakfast earlier in the morning.

Whew!!

So the GMIL made me run from one end of the house to another for NO REASON!! Till date, I’m not sure what made her resort to such techniques of harassment. There were many more instances, many more harsh words, many more slights and insults. When the twins refused to feed, the GMIL left no stone unturned in letting each and every person, who dropped by for a visit, know about my lack of feeding capability. It is a barb that still hurts. But the wounds are not that fresh now. The healing process is on. Mostly because however sharp the GMIL was towards me, she was the epitome of mushy goodness with the twins. She handled them with tender care  and that is one of the reasons I could resume working so soon after the twins were born (the second reason was that I couldn’t stand the same comments everyday. Call it hormones or whatever, I found it easier to sob my heart out in the office washroom than at home. Also, I had friends here, people who cheered me up immensely with their jokes and one-liner. Thanks OSD1HT gang. It’s good to know you all). But still, there are times I  wonder why she used to say all that, do all those things which could be described in just one word – nasty!!

One of the disciplining rules of my parents was that one should never ever talk back to elders, whatever may be the case. Till date, my parents follow that golden rule. Their parents met their end knowing that their children never uttered an insult towards them, irrespective of however bad they were treated. This behavior rubbed on us, I guess. Because no matter how awful I felt or how low, I could never utter a single word in protest. So if the GMIL thundered at me, I just cowered in a corner (no , don’t imagine that scene. It wasn’t that bad 😀 ) . Mostly, I used to keep quiet, take it in, and sob over it later.

I could have threatened to walk out of the house many times. But the one thing that held me back was that the BF is his granny’s favourite. A first-born, much pampered child, the BF is besotted by his granny. A fact that didn’t escape the grand-mater, since most of her attacks occurred in the absence of her grandson!! Since he could not say much to his grand-mother, given her advanced age, he did his best to make life a little easier for me, cheered me up and asked me to do what I wanted to do and not just what she wanted me to do.

Another factor holding me back was the MIL, who turned out to be a complete anti-thesis of the GMIL. So where granny was loud, MIL was silent, where granny was grumpy, MIL was cheerful, where the old lady was dominating, the MIL was subservient. Moreover, the MIL has a sincere penchant for family values, of holding on to family members and  of letting go of ill-will and bad vibes. Probably the reason she herself never walked out when she was the target of granny’s ire 😐

The last six months have been trying on our family. GMIL’s accidental fall and subsequent operations, hospitalization and nursing care is taking its toll on us.  But the worst affected is the granny herself. Once the roaring lion of the house, she is now barely a mewing cat. I’ll confess here that the devil in me was partly glad that the GMIL no longer poked her nose in kitchen matters (there was a time when she made me cook 6 separate dishes for 6 people!!)  or didn’t make me run around like an errand girl all day. In a way, GMIL stopped giving me the accusing looks that she used to give earlier, the look which said that I was incapable of doing anything right! Sure, it was always infuriating……but now that I don’t suffer that fate anymore, I realized that I feel something is amiss. Life isn’t as spicy as before. And because I no longer have GMIL’s interference, I’ve become lax in my responsibilities 😦

It comes as a shock really….because there was a time that I wanted the GMIL to stay in her room and not dig into what I do all day. But now since she’s doing exactly that, I hate it!! I hate to see her huddled in her bed, barely talking and mostly being alone. I hate to see the plea in her eyes when she needs to pee and asks for help. I hate to see her barely gulping down a few morsels before she tires out.  I hate to see the tears in her eyes as the pain shoots up her leg. I hate to see her detached from the homely responsibilities that were once her lifeline! I hate to see that the twins are slowly distancing themselves from the Big-dadi who was once their savior and idol! There was a time when the twins used to frolic on her lap, climb all over her and she would be giggling just as childishly as them. The twins now barely enter her room, though I’ve told the nanny to make sure that the kids have their lunch and afternoon siesta with Granny. They sometimes refuse to enter her room and I know that innocent as their refusal might be, it hurts the GMIL bad. And it is that hurt resignation which hurts me the most 😦

Come to think of it, I’m ready to be a errand-girl once again, I’ll cook a thousand dishes if she wants me to, I’ll do all the running around as she wants and am ready to take whatever harsh words she wants to spit out.

But I want the old granny back. Life’s just not the same anymore without her caustic presence. When I tend to her nowadays, she’s very gentle, kind. This has improved our relationship considerably, by leaps and bounds, if I may say so. I can now sit and chat with her without fear. But this submissive attitude doesn’t suit her at all! I’d rather have the fiery tiger any day 🙂

Please send your prayers and good wishes for GMIL. She needs all she can to muster her strength and walk again.

Thanks.



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