Sunday, October 26, 2008
Somewhere, 15 floors below, some bombs explode.
I must explain, the bathrooms open out onto a duct, which creates hissing house of horror wind sounds on an average windy day, teeth chattering spooky sounds at the height of the monsoon, and thanks to the wonderful promise of a 22 floor echo possibility, is the chosen spot for bomb enthusiasts to exercise their skills.
Therefore, the bomb burst. And the door of the bathroom burst open and the brat came running out. (For those of you who will undoubtedly be curious, he had not yet commenced the business at hand, therefore all was clean and hygienic).
"Mamma, the toilet had bomb."
And continued in absolute incoherent terror. "Someone lit bomb in the potty. When I wuz sitting down. The potty expodid."
Mamma held his hand, calmed him down and opened the bathroom door and showed him said sanitaryware, very much intact.
Brat instinctly looked down at his plumbing area.
"But there wuzabom. It expodid."
Mamma explained how the bomb had exploded many floors below and how he should get back on his perch. But the urge had passed.
Sometime later, the urge struck again. And the fear of the expodingbom had him contort himself rather than risk sitting on the expoding potty.
So Mamma offered to accompany him, and supervise from the bathroom window slats to ensure no miscreants expoded boms in the potty.
This time round the task was done to no further exposions. Therefore says brat, "Mamma, the boms getting fwightened of you."
Mamma laughs, and not knowing what she's getting herself into, says in all innocence, "Yes, love."
After a bit, the pater decides to take his morning newspaper and step into the bathroom. The brat stops him sternly.
"Pappa, take Mamma with you to potty. No boms will expoding."
And with that,
Happy Diwali all.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Given that he is not allowed within ten feet of any firecracker that is not a sparkler, this is at the best a wish list.
Yes, yes, I can just see myself as the mother waving him off on his first bike. Yup, I'm the mother who is going to be flying behind holding onto the pillion snarling at traffic to keep out of the way.
"Mamma, I wanna rocket."
"Mamma, I wanna fountain."
"Mamma, I wanna adambom."
Mamma plays deaf. The father's ears prick up. The son is showing signs of machoness.
"Beta, Pappa will get you 2000 ka ladh," says Pappa excitedly. "Will you light it?"
Mamma snarls like the little girl in The Exorcist and spits green ketchup at Pappa.
"Over my dead body." And mentions something about environment pollution, waste of money, child labour and such like. All which is dismissed with a wave of a hand by said Pappa.
Mamma is sure, given the prospect of lighting adamboms, Pappa wouldnt mind stepping over above mentioned body.
"Will you make him a sissy?" says Pappa with all the sternness he can muster up in face of feral mamma.
"He has to learn."
Mamma snarls something on the lines of there being time enough for such rubbish and the child will stick with sparklers under supervision but Pappa is having none of it.
Yup. Mamma can just see Pappa, eyes gleaming, giving the brat his rite of passage birthday gift on his 18th budday. The damn motorbike of her nightmares.
"Mamma, buy for me adambom. And umbrella rocket. And snake."
Mamma agrees to the last. Snake pellets. Anyone remember them. Black pellets that rise up when lit. Into snakoid forms. And leave round black marks on pristine flooring.
"Mamma, I wanna tipligun. To do bang bang."
Mamma gives up.
And a Happy Diwali to you too.
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Winning first prize at his first fancy dress competition as Noddy.
Having long conversations on Mamma's mobile, and then dunking it into hot tea and ruining it forever.
Through some gun play, some dress up, and some study.
To going to the park with Mamma, here all of nine months and fresh from his mundan.
With his first few teeth poking though and making his smile a million dollar one.
Here having a good butt scratch.
Lolling on the sofas.
And still a chubby baby.
I miss this baby, gurgling and Johnson's Baby Powder fresh.
And of course, you all know the latest Raikonnen avatar so not going to repeat those and Spiderman.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
He will turn five in a few days, and it seems like it was just yesterday that he was born. A mewling little ball of flesh who terrified me. I didnt know what to do with him. I had never ever in my entire life held a newborn and now I was wholly and solely responsible for a life. It was scary. He was my responsibility.
His skin was mottled blue with patches. I was assured they would fade over time, they terrified me, what was with this child's skin, would he be doomed to covering his legs all his life to hide the blue green patches all over. Yesterday, I suddenly realised, while bathing him, that they had faded away. The skin was smooth, brown. He has my skin tone, my son. And nothing else from me. Perhaps my eyelashes. And my insatiable curiousity. The rest of him is all Pappa. For a while he had fooled us. He seemed to look like me. Everyone said so. And now suddenly, he's done a volte face and become a reduction xerox of his father. I couldnt be more pleased. I see both of them, Pappa and son, sleeping next to each other, his leg thrown royally over Pappa's tummy, their faces like reproductions of each other and my heart bursts with joy.
He is also becoming a big boy. He is doing everything 'apne aap'. This means bathing himself, washing his bum (though I need to muscle in at this point and cross check that the faucet has been directed appropriately and for requisite amount of time), doing his homework apne aap. Which I have been encouraging, by leaving him with a page and explanations of the task to be completed and disappearing while it is being done, the downside is that he flat out, foot down firmly on ground, refuses to redo anything done wrong. Small price to pay for independence. Even if the alphabets are scurrying all around the page like ants thrown into disarray rather than in orderly lines. And he is playing with his friends apne aap. I no longer need to step in and explain the rules of the games to him, or help him follow the instructions. He's come a long way, my baby.
He had grey eyes when he was born, they've changed to a deep brown. Like his father's. He is a barrel of monkeys on a roll most of the day. He chatters non stop. And I remember the days I had to cajole words out of him. When I sat and made excel sheets of the words he was using, and segregating them into appropriate context of use and pronounciation. He speaks fluent English and Hindi today. And knows some colourful cuss words too, thanks to belligerent Pappa yelling at lackeys on the phone in his presence. And I remember the days when he would be lost in his own world. Not respond to his name. When he would repeat back questions asked to him. Echolalia, they said it was called. Its nowhere in evidence now.
And his inability to sit still for a minute. He now sits down for well over an hour and does his writing practice. And does it happily too. Without being threatened, cajoled or bribed to do so. I have to meet his teachers tomorrow for the mid term parent teacher meet. I know I will go to this meeting with not a single flutter in my heart, my son has surpassed every expectation I had of him being able to catch up with the rest of his class, and more.
He has become such a big boy now. I get a perverse pleasure from making him wear clothes he has outgrown. And I flick through photographs to see him like he was, tiny, gurgling, chubby, stubborn. Laughing when I kissed him and bounced him on my lap. And I see him as he is now, a big boy. Who furiously rubs his cheeks to wipe off Mamma's kichus, who forbids Mamma from hugging him in public, who is embarassed to hold Mamma's hand. Already. Mard ka bachcha. Who still comes running to Mamma when he falls down and scrapes his knee.
My dear son, you've grown up too soon for me. I miss your baby breath, I miss being able to carry you in my arms everywhere. I miss deciding what clothes you should wear, and I miss cuddling and kissing you whenever I felt like it.
Dont ever become so big that you dont ever need your Mamma. Indulge this old lady. Let her hug you sometimes.
Monday, October 13, 2008
So the morning starts, he stretches languidly like a cat as the rays of sunlight I cruelly let fall on his face from the bathroom window slats, via left open bathroom door. Opens his eyes. "Mamma, don call A fer my buddaypahty. He pushme yetterday."
"Okay beta," says Mamma, not even bothering to get into the "You went for his birthday party, so you have to invite him for yours."
"An Mamma, doncall K fer the buddaypahty. He peenchmyface yetterday."
Mamma shoves toothbrush into the brat's mouth to keep the litany from flowing. He pulls out toothbrush and begins complaining again violently. "An don call B, he throw my tiffin on d floor."
Mamma makes him rinse and spit. The litany continues. "And don call R, she complain to teacher about me."
In five minutes he had eliminated his entire class from the guest list. Weary Mamma sits down, towels him dry and asks him sincerely, "Whom do you want to call for your party then?"
He thinks long and hard. And starts. "Ben10. Hattori. Perman. Spiderman. Superman. Spunjbob. And Doraemon. Not Shinchan. He also a naughty boy. Teacher said don see Shin Chan."
Thursday, October 09, 2008
There are lists. Long lists waiting to be ticked off, and got under control. Like so much of mamma's life but thats a different issue and a different post in a different blog, so one will not dwell about it. Like the item about getting nasal hair trimmed. Its been languishing unticked for months in the mental checklist until a coughing spell showed me nostril foliage I could have sent remains off to the wigmakers.
But this is the birthday party checklist. Right now I have the hall. And the games host. And the DJ and the tattoo artist and the decorations in place. It helps that they're all a one stop shop so could do them all at one go. And I have the invitation cards designed and ready to be printed. And the return gift labels. I have the brat's outfit ready. Rather, the doting grandmother organised this way back when monsoon sales had everything at half price, so we have a jacket and a pant, and a Tshirt that is to be worn while the cake is being cut. Which brings me to the cake. That has to be ordered. I will probably remember to do this one day before the birthday and run tearing hair out to Hangout and grovel before the minions there to execute my very immediate order as in the next day. Yes, mamma is the epitome of organisational skills. Which is why she normally realises she has nothing to wear an hour before the do and runs screaming into next door malls to pick up the only decent things that fit, read tent kurtis, and runs out to ensure the guests havent done the cake cutting themselves. That brings us to the end of the party and return gifts. Ackkk! That lends itself to another round of frenzied shopping through wholesale toy stores where everything comes with a Made in China label and which mamma personally detests, but is willing to dig deep into to find something worth gifting. Last year it was a stationery set. The year before that was one of those visors with built in sunglasses that the kids never wore or if they did it never fit. This year, she's searching for something utilitarian and fun. She probably has still to realise she has very high expectations from wholesale toy suppliers.
The brat on the other hand is clear about what he wants. "Tell dDJ I wan Rockon. And Singyking. And Diwalipardner. And Spiderman song."
Mamma must remember to book herself for a massage the next day. Her feet will sure need it.
Sunday, October 05, 2008
So Mamma was physically holding down featherweight DJs who were being blown off in the general direction towards Gujarat which in troth would have been a good business proposition, seeing as emergency DJs can charge a whole lot extra than those booked in regular time. Which is what mamma with her very efficient planning, as in, lets do this dandiya thingie tomorrow, discovered. A sincere prayer to Mata Rani to keep our laaj (honour) and let us not have a space flight simulation experience resulted in the winds actually quietening down and the thick black mocking clouds getting blown over, followed by a nice, pleasant gentle breeze, so Mamma is now convinced that there is something definitely to prayer that comes wrenched out from the bottom of the heart.
The brat, thankfully, was tired to the bone in anticipation of the evening's revelries and had taken himself to bed in the afternoon, snoring mouth wide open the sleep of the Kumbhakaran parents he has descended from. Which allowed Mamma to run around squealing, and putting things together, along with a couple of other similar enthu cutlet mammas from the building. And which involved a lot of standing around with hands on the hips and yelling instructions to watchmen and electricians and pandalwallahs given that the pappas had all averred sincerely that we mammas were wonderful organisers and would do a great job, and were sitting around watching television and swilling beer through the afternoon. Mamma did so much of shouting at the top of her voice to get things organised, standing in typical arms akimbo, feet planted like tree trunks pose, that she actually sniffed her fingers to check if they smelt fishy.
A couple of really nasty squabbles later we were set. And went up to change. And the brat was awake and ready and raring to go. The grandmother had in her devotion got him a pair of silver dandiyas and a new dandiya costume. Silver as in wooden painted over with silver paint. Mamma is not sending the child down with any precious metal on his person. Face washed and scrubbed. Evening gu gu ingested. And dress up happened. The dhoti tied on, the frock type upper worn and tied with the infinite tassels that hold it together. The cap placed rakishly at an angle. If truth be told, mamma would have been able to hold it to the scalp with the aid of a hair pin, so overdue is the brat for a hair cut. But of course that would have been girly, and minor eruptions were already happening over the `frock' one was inflicting on the poor macho male. "I not wearing frock. Evyone laffatme."
Mamma tuned into 24 hour local channel telecasting live dandiya nites and showed him the acrobatics of similarly dressed lads. "I not jumping round and round. Is stupid. "
Mamma, already having downed three Disprins for headache which had reached proportions that would guarantee no action in the bedroom till she reached the grave, locked herself in the bathrooom and dressed up, ignoring the whine whine whine seeping through the door.
When she emerged the brat was nowhere to be seen. The pappa had been whined into taking him down. Mamma followed. To see the brat preening like a peacock in hot mating season, showing off his togs to all and sundry down. Read raggle taggle bunch of kids of assorted size and dress of which exactly two others were dressed in similar style. Therefore they were given the dubious honour of starting off the dance. But the kids, they had different and more exciting plans as to how the evening was to progress. The dandiyas became weapons of assault, and they began playing cops and robbers through the crowd. Hiding behind chairs, taking pot shots at each other with their rifles, and yes, Pappa is going to be sternly warned about watching his Schwarzenegger movies when brat is fast asleep.
Finally, the long distance action didnt appeal, and the trio actually got down to fisticuffs, like men. With the brat deciding the dandiyas could do double duty as lathi. The top of his kathiawadi costume undone, hair dishevelled, this was the moment mamma realised, had it been the Hindi movies, where the hero is getting down to serious pummelling of the villian in the villians den, with said villian just waiting around to be bashed up with fake fighting sounds in the background. Bishoom, bishoom. At this point, he was physically hoisted and despatched back home to a punishment of watching television serials with the dadi by the Pappa. Which he did without a moue of protest. Perhaps, he realised he had gone too far. Perhaps he didnt dare argue with the Pappa.
Mamma reached home, holding her feet in her hands, and promising the Pappa that should she ever find her head beneath the headache, he could renounce the vow of celibacy she was foisting on him, to find all the contents of the many toy baskets on the floor and the bed.
"Brat," in very stern voice, "Please keep all your toys back in the basket."
Brat ignores the command royally. The headache takes on proportions that now require a lobotomy to be guaranteed relief.
"Brat!" Louder. With definite intonation. "Pick this up right now."
"You only pickitup." Rudeness, insolence and backanswering. The Pappa comes to the rescue before mamma pounces and shakes the insolence out of brat.
"Whatever toy you dont pick up and put in the basket in five minutes goes straight into the dustbin."
A worker bee couldnt have worked harder and faster to get things into the honeycomb.
Finally, the Kathiawadi ensemble removed, the mamma having conned the pappa to keep heavy weight legs on her own or failing which offering the pappa kitchen knife to saw hers off, and the brat all set to go to the land of Nod. The room dark and the mamma half snoring inelegantly.
"Mamma, I looking very handsome, no?"
"Yes, my love."
"V din say you looking very handsome. Thaswhy I fight wid him."
Mamma hugged brat and assured him he was the handsomest thing to hit the planet since Marlon Brando.
"Mamma I donwanna wear frock tumaru. Is not nice. I feel shy. Is for gurlz. I only take dandiya. Thas fer boyz."