Friday, December 23, 2011

The housewife

Definition: A married woman whose main occupation is caring for her family, managing household affairs, and doing housework.

So I am listening to a conversation between two men. One - is my husband ... the other is the bank manager from HDFC

Suresh : "So why cannot you insure her"

Manager : "Sir she is a housewife. Per a study blah blah and statistics blah blah ... we insure only the bread winner in the household"

Suresh: " OKKKKK" (Have any of you heard Suresh say OK when he is getting ready to make an argument! It is very long)

Suresh: "She has the capability and qualification to be a bread winner. Tomorrow if she goes out and looks for a job she will make far more than I do right now. I want to insure that capability and qualification of her's - So can you insure her Capability and qualification."

Even though I wanted to knock the manager around a little bit I forgot about it in an instant and my head grew 4 times its size.
Its the moments like these when someone else vouches for you that you feel you can conquer the world!
Its moments like this that I currently live for!
Its moments like this that make the PhD worth it :)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

A few Good people - The journey home Part DEUX

I think the media bring us bad news all the time. I remember a friend from our old church say 'There is more good news than the media puts out'.

So in saying the above I must say there are more GOOD people than BAD people ... A few I would like to mention who came out of the blue and helped us during the last few hours in the United States


Mitel, Koby and Ziva

First to mention our neighbor Koby. When you first meet Koby and Mitel you instantly fall in love with Mitel. She is a total jabber mouth and has an excellent sense of humor. Koby on the other hand is a quiet aloof kinda guy. So even though Mitel had said that we could ask any help during our last few days in the US, we were a little reluctant since she had left for Israel and we would be going to Koby. Koby had disappeared from the neighborhood since Mitel left for her vacation to Israel (He runs a successful perfume business and was busy with work). However four days before we left and just as our things were being packed, he knocked on the door and ' Hi Siresh you need anything bed pillow etc .. let me know'. The next day we were down to one car which we were selling to Koby anyway and he asked if he could take it for inspection. Suresh and I had been hoping to keep the car till the day we left (HA HA right) and told Koby we had a couple more errands to run. He says 'No Problem take my car' pointing at his BMW SUV... ummmm NO! Koby realizing this says 'Fine take the other Mini van'. We agreed and realized that we could sit only 4 people (we were five) in the Mini Van since the back had been dropped for luggage. Koby says 'Seriously take the BWM'. We actually rode it to Bethesda and forgot to fill gas!
Thanks to Koby we had a car till we rented our cars to Newark Airport!

Didi, Uncle, Aunty and BIRYANI
Didi and Baqir --- Baqir was Isaac's favorite buddy! He still misses him.

I have mentioned our neighbors Uncle, Aunty and Didi in a post previously.(
Didi came to us a few days before we left and said ' We would like to make moving easier for you guys and bring some food over' We said OKand decided on Friday - three days before we left the US. Didi, Uncle and aunty have had a rough year with health issues, job searches and other challenges. We really did not want to trouble them but we said OK anyway. On Friday, after all the movers had left and we were in our house with nothing but a few travel bags and some trash bags Didi came over with a big bowl of steaming hot biryani, raita and wonderful Kheer. It had been a long day for us with the packing and moving and kids crying and adults whining. We could not have asked for a better meal. Thanks Didi for a wonderful meal to remember on the last night in our house in Hanover, MD

Cleaning and Veronica
Camila and Ziva-- sharing nap time

Veronica is our cleaning lady and has been since we moved to Maryland. Every house we moved to in Maryland - we were among other things worried if Veronica would come clean it! She has been a blessing. Interestingly the day Veronica told me she was 3 months pregnant was the day the day I found out that I was pregnant. She came to clean our place till she was 7 months pregnant and the we missed her so much when she didnt come. When we told her we were moving (again - we have moved 3 houses in Maryland) she initially assumed that it was to another place in Maryland and her face fell when she realized we were moving out of the country ... not to come back! Veronica went out of her way to come on Saturday morning (she normally doesn't work the weekends) to clean the house. As she agreed to do this she also requested if she could bring her 3 month old daughter with her. We were very excited to see little Camila. After 3 hours of cleaning ... the landlord found our house spanking clean and returned our deposit back! Thank you Veronica :)

Brother Alex and a ride to an airport
Bro. Alex and Valsa chechy with Isaac and me

This one was the most unexpected of kindness and at the most unexpected and most needful time.
Brother Alex called the morning we were going to drive to Pennsylvannia. We were scrambling around the house cleaning up when he said he would like to stop by and pray with us. We were a little reluctant since we didnt even have a place for him to sit. We were also in a bit of a mess as far as picking up our rental cars from the airport were concerned. We realized that we would have to make two trips to the airport - First I would have to drop Suresh... he would have to pick up one rental car... come home and then drop me back to pick up the second rental! Right when we were debating how to make it less complicated Bro. Alex came. He had initially planned on coming in the afternoon since he would be on his way to church. However we had mentioned we would be in the midst of our final walk-through with our landlord. We didnt expect him to change his plans for us! But he did! And we are very thankful that he did! We got on quick drive to the airport and picked up both cars and were back home in a much less complex manner!

Vasu and airport chaos.
Vasu and Isaac

In our brilliance to avoid asking for help we were going to drive to Newark airport with two kids, two dogs, 11 pieces of luggage and two rental cars. Since we had two kids, two dogs and two cars we would first drop my mom off with two dogs and one kid (Ziva) and 11 pieces of luggage. We would then go drop off the cars at the rental and take the train into the airport. The we had to check in 11 pieces of luggage and two dogs. Mind you the two kids would be with us ad one of them probably running around creating havoc!. Mind you the distance between the airport and the car rental drop off at the Newark airport is about as far as driving to your closest Grocery store! 3 Stops by the airport train ride! Which means my mom was supposed to wait at the airport alone with two dogs and Ziva and a bottle of milk for about 1/2 hr (does not seem that long does it!)
The plan was brilliant and ironed out. I bet they will make Mission Impossible 6 based on this plan of ours!
One stop over at Suresh's Uncle's place saved us a lot of unnecessary stress. Suresh's cousin and I must say wise cousin Vasu. Vasu is Suresh's oldest cousin on his mother's side. There is something about Vasu that makes her seem very modest and nice and yet very sophisticated. She is simple and very lady like - but the thing that makes her very affectionate is that she always calls my mother-in-law -- her second mother. Vasu insisted on coming to the airport with us which was about an hour from her house. She helped us unload (something we had not taken into account). She waited with my mom and Ziva and made an emergency call to us when my mom could not find Ziva's milk bottle. She is a big dog lover and stood by the dog crate petting them and calming two very nervous dogs! I do not think we would have completed the entire check-in process in sanity without her help. Thanks Vasu!

So a few good people ... sent in perfect time to help us.

Hebrews 4:16

16 Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

Friday, December 2, 2011

A bubble

I live in a little bubble called Ardendale close to Whitefield Bengaluru. Hats off to Suresh for finding this place. Its lovely!

What make Ardendale lovely is not the house really but the surrounding greenery. There are little shurbs and trees along the road and along each house. There is a little park where Isaac loves to swing and jump and sit in the sand. Ziva watches him closely as he goes busily from one activity to the next. His favorite though is definitely his sand toys and the sand.

But outside this bubble of mine is a different world. There is a small village right outside the gates of Ardendale. If you walk out in Capris you get teased by ... not boys ... but college girls. I got the comment of ' SUPERRR' when I walked out with Ziva in her Baby Bjorn and Isaac on his stroller. I asked for it since I had my sunglasses on and was wearing Capris! Not the best way to fit in. The village has a little bakery with sweet bread. It has a small cauliflower farm and a ton of other vegetables. Every morning a lady walks by our house selling fresh veggies, coriander and mint which seems like she just harvested!

Last Saturday as I walked to the tiny bakery I saw little boys dressed up in white for school... Little boys with no shoes happily walking in the slushy road. I wish I had a camera but I dont think I want to walk around with Suresh's big fat SLR ... so you may have to wait a bit before I get some pictures.

Isaac's favorite thing outside the gates of Ardendale are the goats and cows tied up for their meals :)

I love it so far!