Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Bengali May Kehtey Hain....

You know you are a 17 month old in Bangladesh:

1) When asked whether you want pai (milk) you say Chaa (tea)

2) (Let Gloria E know please) Rhythm did get to you . You recite the numbers as One Two-Cha Cha Cha (how could we let Pancham Da's birthday go amiss)

3) Your picture book has ten illustrations for fruits and vegetables, twenty three for fish.

4) Your parents have to think twice and consult five people before getting a football jersey for you (lest we offend someone's religious sensibilities).

We now know Messi is God here (so no maid or driver will leave in a huff)

5) Well this one is not connected to Dhaka but it is something you said this month. For a couple of days you were good enough to nod your head for a yes or no when I asked whether you wanted to go. And then one day you said to yourself Oh My God, wont it be more exciting my way. So

Arhaan? Do you have to poop?
And you point to your butt and screamCheckkk!!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Julie Oh Julie

Julia Gillard at Monash University in June 2010. Photo: Craig Abraham

Good things happen to you when you visit Monash University

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Sabaq Aisa, Padhha Diya.. Tune.

Lest we forget:

** On our flight back Gman realises that Arhaan can point (when asked) to most of the stuff in magazines and his books. It is a sobering moment as we realise that this kid knows more than he has been letting on. Gman sighed and reflected on how all these random items have been etched FOREVER in his baby's mind.
Imagine Aneela for life he will know this is a shirt, these are his socks.

(khair, for life is a bit too much as most of the time his parents are asking each other for that blue jo hai na in the cupboard.

Blue shirt?

No no. That, which was there.

This? The grey trouser?


Then what?

Ive forgotten now.)

Sobering thought: If the kid is absorbing For Life (with some reservations) what socks and shirts are, he is most probably also learning For Life what right and wrong is (or what his parents think chalta hai). I think children are sent to us for the express purpose of cleaning up our act, you know kind of a refresher course in Good Values and Moral Science.

** We were transiting through Singapore. We resisted the urge to veg out at Arcadia Road and Orchard and stayed in the lounge. But not for long as Arhaan loves the play area; so we had to get out of the lovely massage chairs and abandon the nice food platter I had made for ourselves (Three decades and counting of queuing up for food at weddings and the Sizzler Salad Bar, we have perfected it to a fine art OK). Arhaan went crazy at the slide and rocking horse, but not as ballistic as the Transiting Toddler from Japan. Red Bull and Maa Ka Piyar had given him wings and how. The long suffering father would try to follow him but would give up exhausted. The toddler ran into windows, fell off from the slide, tripped over himself, but was ready to go each time. Resilient Economy na ho. The father seemed concerned and would go O-ho. The mother was chilled out. All In a Day’s Work and all and took some time off. I chatted with the father for a while, he was really exhausted and for a change Arhaan was the good one and someone wanted pointers from me. After a while the mother returned from her expedition and passed a small pharmacy packet to her partner, he checked the contents and put it in his backpack. Ab its bad manners to go through other people’s laundry and their shopping, but for the wise its enough to know that there are 99 % chances the toddler didn’t get a sibling that night (I bet the dad wanted to know why they didn’t think of it three years ago).

** I realise now how much Arhaan absorbs from me. Certain people continued to use their mobiles when the plane was taking off and switched them on as the runway approached. I announced in a loud voice How Inconsiderate People Are. Some of Us Have Children and Would Like It if they Get To See Their Next Birthday. I begged Gman to translate it in Bengali and preferably stare ominously as well (he is a wuss and told the cabin staff ,considering we are still in grade one and only Miss will take on the class bully, however he did comply with the dirty looks request and gave some nasty looks in their general direction). It was later as we were getting off the plane that one of them goofily came up to us and asks Arhaan “ Babu? Ghoom pachey naki?” (sleepy are we?) and Arhaan turned around and I swear hissed in the man’s face.

And so the learning begins.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Solah, Satra, Satra, Solah, Mil Jaayen Naina

Warning: This is going to be a very disjointed post. But a mom's got to do what a mom got to do.

Dear Arhaan, you are today sixteen and a half months old. Lest you turn seventeen before I start working on the Month Sixteen Letter, lets start jotting down the highlights from the month past. Considering yesterday afternoon you very successfully deleted your pics from the camera I should make some attempt of archiving the highs and the lows.

We have been in Melbourne for the past fortnight. We now realise that there is a severe draw back to your being such a "frequent flyer", the plane has become a second home and you refuse to be intimidated into staying in the bassinet. What me buckle up? When I can gambol up and down the aisle meeting mah people? Handshakes all around!
Your desi DNA has surfaced and how. You believe that the only criterion while employing female cabin staff is that they should fawn over you. I died a million deaths as you summoned them each time someone deemed breaking eye contact with you. You pretty lady, where were we before we were so rudely interrupted? Missss, Im tired, what happened to that hand massage?

That slight gender confusion about your mother and father is a thing of the past. your dad was getting a tad nervous about being refered to as Mama for the fifteenth time. You had no such problems identifying and enunciating Car. Ditto Ball.

We have identified the five laughs of Arhaan. I think there was a movie where the guy lists out the different smiles or was it laughs of his loved one and I had moaned How Lame. Well I was wrong. You do have distinct laughs for the various moods you are going through. We are particularly fond of the fake laugh you have everytime your parents choose to hug. It is sooo artifical, and high pitched we are still wondering where you picked it up from. A-ha-ha and you leave whatever you have been doing to be part of a group hug. You are our own Censor Board. Remember Paresh Rawal saying " Sayaam", that is you. At this rate I have to channel Mother Mary or Kunti to give you a sibling.

Speaking of siblings we met Pesho this month. You were quite taken by her, she less so. It was a very emotional evening for me. Bus Beti Khush Rahey Jaha Bhee Ho.

There are also the five different Songs of Arhaan. the lulling himself to sleep song, the Im Poopin Poopin Poopin Song, the Im so Happy Song as I take you for a ride in your stroller, the I dont know the Words but I know how the Alphabet Song Goes song (you have totally aced the Gs and Ms though)and there is the angry song. You sing it when you are cross about the seat belt, the child restraint in the stroller or generally not having your way. I cant understand what exactly you are saying but judging by your mood the words go somewhere along the lines Old Age Home Old Age Home.

You have successfuly learnt to stretch your arms and say Theeees Much when I ask you How Much Do You Love Me. And it took only one try. You have not been so good in learning to say "Can You Repeat the Question" when someone asks you How Much You Love Baba. But Hope Springs Eternal.

You have *touch wood* picked up the love of the printed word from me. It warms the cockles of my heart when I see you reading even when the TV is blaring in the background. You also give me a guilt trip when I wake up (having nodded off trying to put you to sleep before Ive read you your bedtime story) and you are reading your bed time book to yourself. Its interesting to see you making up your own words to the story. Da dey, here it is, da, da and Theees Much (stretching your hands) Bye Bye. I wish the books continue to fascinate you as much when you learn to read the pages!!

I am also happy that you have inherited my "nerves of steel" and guts to match and are very happy on the swings daring us to swing you higher. Oh the times we will have exploring all the Extreme Rides and bungee jumping. My happiest moment this month was when you and me were swinging side by side (Dear Child Services, Arhaan was strapped in all this while)

As you have decided to delete the pics from the last couple of days, I will post this month's " photo is my motto" update later.

Stay happy,