Ah, they may say you say it best when you say nothing at all. But I think I will say it the best if I just jot down my notes. Apologies for the bullet points, but my brain is mush at the moment and I have to write all this down, before I forget, digress or just give up on writing.
1) So we were in Melbourne for a couple of days. It was all a daze of unpacking cartons, ferreting out what we thought were The Essentials, packing bags (and discovering in Dhaka how This Was Not What I Wanted). I did not meet most of the people I wanted to, and in the end we just abandoned all plans and let the toddler dictate the holiday. He saw four Santa Clauses (Claus? Clauses? help Grammar Police) and in the end it was a case of Mr. Aisa Lagta hai Hum Ney Pehley Aap Ko Kahi Dekha Hai, somehow Santa like Elvis just never left the building.
There was one nice picnic come the 24th, when we all sang carols in the park reading the words off a big screen and shiny, happy people sang on the stage engaging in some friendly, flirtatious banter with Santa , you know just like in the days of yore.
And on Christmas day we left for Thailand. Just like Santa.
2) This break in Bangkok was particularly lovely for me as this time around I shared the city with one of my favourite people. I am not exactly sure how the holiday treated her, considering she thought she was going to meet the Arhaan from this post. Not the whiny, chipkoo, Baba chahiye, Thomas-Mickey-Thomas played in a loop loving brat. Arhaan turned 23 months while we were in Bangkok and I miss him so much. You know the Arhaan I knew, not this high-maintenance chico. Yes, sadly Arhaan has "turned", before leaving Dhaka he was the sweet little kid who got his highs hanging from the clothesline, give him a wooden spoon and pots and he was set for a rollicking afternoon. The New Arhaan has "standards" as Parul reminds me. So we concluded at the end of the vacation that Arhaan does not do "awami style" malls like MBK (Parul says it stands for Mad in BKK with Kids). He does not do food courts. Take him to Emporium or Central Chidlom and stick him in a nice place with cutlery and he will do fine.
3) However, there were days when the kids were just kids as in sweet and innocent and not the "hothouse orchids please keep me in an urban space" brats. Parul's Adi and Arhaan spent many a afternoon just pushing the buttons on games or "doing jugaar" as you will see below in Exhibit C without asking for any token or coins to be put in.
All until they saw What Lies Beyond. And there was a Aww, chothey?
You lookin at what Im lookin at.
Aww shucks we have been cheated.
This is what happens when you put in money
Khair, by then it was too late and we were ready to leave the city.
4) My tantrum throwing kid aside Bangkok was bliss. And a lot of massages. And bliss. And good food. And Parul had to do a lot of duty being my moral compass for the year ahead.
5) Parul's Ragu is a sweetheart and very very clever. It is freaky to turn around and catch her watching you, very very intently and for all purposes taking down notes for her expose on all of us grown ups. She is very quiet as she goes about her work, and nothing misses her sharp eye, she is the one to watch out for and if I ever get to be a publisher I am calling out first dibs for anything she comes up with.
Adi is going to invent something, he has a million questions (though he knows exactly how everything works and is always waiting to catch you out) and somehow you can see the little wheels in his mind in motion as he is questioning, analyzing, storing the information, and coming up with his own little projects. And what is special about this child is that he has empathy and missed the One Who Was Left Behind sorely.
6) My husband is the saviour, and the rational one, and the one who will save the day, cook the breakfast, burp the children, tell me Im being silly when I get hysterical yada yada yada someone just give him his mantle already. You know that is the funny thing when you vacation with people, you might think they know you through your words, or over the phone or brief holidays but you always wonder what they will make of you and your family when they share actual living space and their whole day with you. You know as in who wears the "figurative" pants in your family, well in my case P knows who wears the pants, the apron, the cleaning gloves and the mommy blanket. In her blog she mentioned how Gman is the Baby Whisperer, she was more candid one morning and I am going to reproduce that comment as well.. its about time the guy gets some credit. She says Gman is the true "working woman" you know the one with the blackberry in hand, balancing the kid, the muffins, the newspaper, the shoes that need mending, the house cleaning supplies while the lout of a husband (in this case me) strolls along merrily. Haha. As I keep on telling people that is why we make a happy team, yes there are days when I am ticked off by the strong silences and patches of gruff replies and general What Did I Get Myself Intos but when push comes to shove I know someone has my back. And a mug of tea. And he lets me read.
7) Arhaan started school or lets say he goes to a place where he plays in the sand, and goes on the swings, reads, paints and potters around. I did ask him what he does in school one day and he says pishi poopoo, so I think we can cancel my gown for the Nobel Prize ceremony. I have been hanging around at the school on and off and I still think I did good. Let it be said I did one right thing by choosing this place rather than the others which promised him reciting the alphabet, recognizing shapes and writing letters to us by the end of the day. See, the place I am sending him to is like going to your grandmother's house, you know the grand mothers that stayed at home and kept an eye out for you and your friends (not the ones with laptops leaving on a jet plane). The one who lived in a rambling old red brick house with nice airy, big rooms and there was a pretty garden and a long drive where you cycled up and down. And everybody washed their hands and sat down to eat their mid-day snacks at the table come 10:30. Yes, this is what I am doing with Arhaan, I am sending him back to the 1980s minus the moustached dictator.
So I guess this is all for today. I will hopefully change the blog name in the coming days so any last minute suggestions, please send them my way.