Check out what the Indian Mommies are upto at indianmommies.blogspot.com

August 01, 2007

We are like this only.

I don't know how it all started. May be my moms enthusiasm for life or my dads passion with life but we have always looked forward to each day with utmost pleasure and wondering how we can make someones life happier by doing something. It might be just some silly thing like writing a note or helping with sisters home work or folding the laundry but everything will have a surprise element to it. When I was a teenager, I would nt fold the laundry or help my mom around the house even if she begged me to. But the minute she went out to do some shopping or to visit a temple, I ll start planning on how to surprise her when she came back. I remember when I was 13, I wanted some drawings for my chemistry record book and my sister would nt help me. I cried the whole evening and went to school the next day without taking the book with me. I was planning to tell the teacher I had forgotten the book to get an extra day to do the dirty work. Then during lunch time, my sister comes to my school in a cycle on a hot day and gives me the book with neat drawings. It was always the surprises which made our lives so special and so extraordinary. My mom would cook a storm without telling us, my dad would buy a puppy and surprise us. I would get first rank in some exam but would give the report card with a sad face to my parents to see the look on their faces when they saw number 1 written on it. There was a never a dull moment in our lives.

Off to college and at the drop of a hat I would leave the hostel and take a bus to go home which was five hours away. Since we were living in office quarters, I would go to Dads office first to surprise him, Then call mom from his office and tell her that I'm going to leave the hostel and will be home by evening. After a minute, I ll be knocking the door and she ll say "Enna dee idhu"(What is this?) when she seesme. Numerous occasions like these but it never got boring. We four always tried to do better than the other when it came to surprising. Fast forward to 3 years back when I was in Swiss and my sister came to India from the US to attend her sister in laws wedding. My parents and she were going to have so much fun and this would be the first time they would be together without me. I was fuming inside but whoever thinks of spending a fortune on a flight ticket to attend sister's sis in law's wedding? People don't even attend their own sis in law's wedding these days! Then Hd asked me "why don't u go". I wanted to but felt it was nt right. But he insisted and when the surprise element was thrown in, the old me could nt resist. I say old me because my marriage had killed my surprise instinct thanks to my in laws who associate surprises to lying! A year after our marriage, they visited London and we went to pick them up at the airport. I told Hd to hide and I went to them and told Hd could nt make it as he had a meeting and welcomed them. Then Hd came from behind and surprised them when immediately my mil told him "She lied to us, da. She told us you have not come". My face well and that was the end of old me when it came to my in laws. Thankfully, Hd caught the infection and we lived happily ever after surprising the hell out of each other every birthday, anniversary or any other occasion. Anyhow, I booked my tickets to Chennai. Yes, to attend my sister's sis in law's wedding. I had to tell my dad as he had to pick me up from the airport. My in laws were traveling that day so they could nt. So I landed on a Saturday midnight and my dad and I stayed in a hotel. Next day, we went to my sister's In law's house and when my sister saw me, she was speechless for a whole minute and that's saying something as no one in this whole wide world has seen my sister speechless even for a second right form the moment she was born! :) Thankfully, my mom was in another room. I went and stood near her. But she totally did nt see me but was looking at my dad who had just entered. Then I said "Mom?" and she turned and saw me and she was so shocked that I was afraid she was having a heart attack. Conveniently, my BIL was not in the scene so I got to surprise him as well but he was nt blown over. He said he was confident that I would never leave my sister alone with my parents! Wise man, he is! Then of course since I had paid so much for the ticket, I went on to surprise my cousin, my aunt, my uncle, tom, dick and harry as well and was talk of the town for a while. Got a gorgeous Silk Saree from my sisters MIL as well for the wedding, So I would say it was Paisa Vasool! ;)

Then of course this time. I have never surprised my dad big time. And decided to do it this time to honor his retirement. I roped in my sister as well and the stage was set. She decided to surprise her In laws as well since by now you might have guessed what a loony bin family we are! As my In laws are nt the type, I pulled them in for the execution stage. I needed someone for transportation as well, you see! :) So after hazaar phone calls, chat and mails later we booked our tickets and could nt wait for the big day. And it all happened way much better than we had anticipated. After the surprise number one with sister's In laws who were totally blown over, we moved on to Scene 2. My dad was in the entrance of our house talking to his brother and my mom was at the back of the house talking to her cousin. My sister hid in the car while Ashu and I got down. My uncle(Dads younger brother and my favorite uncle!) and dad were shell shocked seeing me get down with Ashu at 8 o clock in the night. My dad took Ashu from me and literally ran home to surprise my mom. That's how our minds work - how to surprise the next person in the relay race! Anyway, my sneaky uncle who was sure I would nt have traveled alone, went to the car and took a look inside expecting my FIL or Hd when my sister popped out. From Switzerland he could take! But from the US! And the both of us!! He went ballistic! We shushed him and ran home when our clueless mom was walking back from her cousins place and saw us. At first, she was nt sure if it was really us. But then, a mother knows her brood does nt she? She let out a scream when we shushed her and ran up the stairs as my dad still does nt know that my sis has come. Poor dad was looking for my mom at home when we all went up and he was showing Ashu to mom and exclaiming when my sis went behind him and closed his eyes. The indecipherable scream from my dad when he saw her was just priceless. My mom was still in shock and for 2 minutes, she did nt even remember the existence of Ashu who was sitting on the Oonjal(wooden swing) and laughing out loud seeing the drama unfolding around her. My uncle, aunt, my moms cousin, my grand mother and dads office assistant joined in and the cacophony lasted for an hour. My mom just could nt sleep the entire night.

On the 31st, there was this gala party with a huge crowd and all everyone could talk was how Mr.V's two daughters surprised him on his retirement day and what a lucky man he is to have such a wonderful family and also had such a successful career. Tears flowed everywhere when they said their good byes to dad. We of course could nt stop smiling at the feat we pulled much to their surprise! As you would have known by now, this family is full of surprises, folks! What to do, we are like this only.

35 comments:

the mad momma said...

ooh first comment! i think its lovely you surprise each other.. this is what family traditions are made of... have fun!

Poppins said...

What an amazing story ! With all this history, how did you manage to get surprised when your sister threw the second birthday party for Ashu? :-)

Have fun !! How long are you in India?

SS said...

This is just so incredibly sweet and so heartwarming. God bless.

Kodi's Mom said...

too too sweet! and yes, God bless your family and may you share many many more pleasant surprises.
seeing as the surprise streak runs in the genes, has Ashu thrown any surprises your way yet?

knicksgrl0917 said...

hey! i'm going to cali this weekend and won't be back until september...here is the website i was talking about where i made extra summer cash. Later! the website is here

mnamma said...

You Rock Boo! Our Best wishes to you and your family! May the pleasant surprises continue!

timepass said...

I was actually waiting for ur next post after reading the previous one..and my waiting paid off..got to read a really lovely post.. so any surprises for the bloggers who comment on ur blog???

B o o said...

MM - I know you will relate as we both have quite a mad family! ;)

Poppins - Good question! Did I say we are very gullible too? Especially my mom and I! :)

SS - Thanks.

Kodis mom - I think Ashu is getting there, now that I think about it!!

mnamma - Thanks you.

timepass - Hmmm.. thats an interesting idea! Just you wait! ;)

Asha said...

Such a nice post... And best wishes to your dad!

Anonymous said...

I remember u writing about Dora...See this link

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070801/ap_on_bi_ge/toy_recall


K

Just Like That said...

The excitement and delight is very catching in this post of yours, Boo- left a very very nice, happy feeling after reading...

Glad you all had SUCH a lovely time with surprises galore. Wish I could have seen all the faces as you and sis and Ashu popped up one after the other..! :-D

~nm said...

Wow! thats was so nice! I had tears in my eyes reading your Dad's retirement surprise :D

Something to Say said...

I was thinking how tame my dad's retirement day was....got me really teary eyed. Love the surprise element of your family. You guys really rock And what a blow by blow account...good stuff Boo.

Shyam said...

That put a smile on my face :) My sis, brother and I have surprised my little cousin twice that way - once on her 16th birthday. Bonus was she was asleep and woke up to see us all lined up by her bed! You could have heard her scream of joy at the other side of town! :)

Moppet's Mom said...

What an awesome family tradition. It's a good thing all of you have strong hearts! :-)

theseus said...

Have been lurking for quite some time. Love your posts. But this one was very touching. I think you have a wonderful family.
Take care

SUR NOTES said...

couldnt stop smiling...
maybe you should start a indian mad families' tranditions blog - we can all chip in with our madness.

please wish your dad on behalf of this strange blogging community thats hooked onto your capers! we are starting our own set of traditions i guess.

NainaAshley said...

What a wonderful family and what a great story!
Best wishes to your Dad. Have fun in India.

utbtkids said...

Glad that it all worked out! UR sissie speechless is something I am yet to witness! And to some people viewing surprise as lying, I can see eye to eye with you on that! Have lots of fun! Blog more!

MLC said...

i hv gvn a lot of surprise parties to friends and fmly and shocked 99% of thm, somuch so they feel i shd start a "surprise-r-us" store!! and i totally felt the thrill while reading this post! awesome job! hope u guys never lose the 'surprise to thrill' thingy!!

Sujatha said...

This is absolutely a delightful story. Haven't felt like this in a long time, reading a blog. :)

shubha said...

wat a heart melting gesture on all your part for your dad. touch wood ! god bless you all

Ardra said...

Wonderful! fantastic! enjoyed so much reading this post- I can't tell you- I felt as if I too was there among you all- and it was touching at the same time- wish you all this Happiness and zest for life always- and may you share it with us readers too :-D
and yes- special wishes for your Dad!

Premalatha said...

You are a very happy family. Bless you all.

Spontaneity and Afterthought said...

Wonderful of you to share the whole experience with us. and thanx for giving me ideas to do something exciting.
well, me has started blogging recently. would apppreciate some encouragement from you.

B o o said...

Asha - Thanks a tonne.

K - Thanks for the link. Luckily, I have nt bought any of those recalled products for Ashu but scary nevertheless.

JLT - Everyone who knows my mom has been saying the same thing - wish I could have seen your mothers face! Because she is the perfect subject to surprise! :)

nm - Wow, thanks!

s2s - thanks. My dad would have been perfectly ok even if we had not come. But then we hardly do anything for dad. Its always sarees, jewellery and gifts for mom but nothing for dad. So we thought to make this day extra special for him and Im glad we did.

Shyam - My mom has been going on and on about our surprise to Tom, Dick and Harry for the past 5 days and pinches herself off and on to see if shes dreaming! Like I said, perfect subjects make surprises perfect! ;)

Moppets mom - LOL! so true! :)

B o o said...

Theseus - Thanks for deluriking and for the lovely comment.

Sur - Its so nice to read all your comments wishing my dad. Bloggers rock! :)

Naina - We have our own can of worms like any other family, Im sure! We have had fights already but then familes - we cant do with them, we cant do without them, right? ;)

utbt - At last good to see someone relating to the susrprise=lying part! Misery needs company! :)

mlc - The whole planning is really thrilling, no? I was upset that the surprise was over and theres nothing to look forward to now!

Sujatha - Thanks, that means a lot to me.

Shubha - Thanks. We did nt think it would be so emotional when we planned it. Now we are glad we did it!

Ardra - Thank you.

Latha - You dont know the half of it. but thanks anyway! ;)

S&A - And do blog about it when you do surprise the special someone! :)

The Inquisitive Akka said...

That was SOOOOOOOOO lovely!Thanks for sharing!Made me cry, but then it doesn't take much to make me weep these days! Your family is just wonderful!

Anonymous said...

what a lovely family tradition. my family was never one for traditions - and i always longed to have / create our own when we got married - but nobody is co-operating! - not my parents, not my husband, not my in laws, - they are all nice normal people and nice normal family memebrs - but nobody is interested in nice traditions.
the only one who seems interested is my older daughter. (she has more enthu than me too!)
- d

karmickids said...

What an absolutely delightful post, and my heartiest wishes to your dad. enjoy your time in India, and here's to you returning to Zurich with no need for diapers anymore (cannot even begin to tell you how liberating that can be!)

Krishnapriyacr said...

kewl ..kewl post!!!! I too have my bit to surprise my parents..rusing back from bagalore in a crowded unreserved compartment and catching a bus from Chennai central at 5 in the morning and surprising dad n mom!! Wow..those were the days..and as you said..have really become and 'good ol' me after marriage and kids...shall take up your example and still try to do some surprising!!!

The Visitor said...

Boooo,
Booo hoooo :( :)

Kay said...

Awwwww! How much fun! :) wow!

I was planning for one kutti surprise for this time when we goto India ... Your family's tradition of surprises takes the real cake with royal icing!!!

Boo, Would you mind if I borrowed this surprise thing? For a bare-it-all person like me, It's going to be very hard, but hey, you can teach an old dog new tricks, esp. if the dog is willing.

Cantaloupes.Amma (CA) said...

WOW .. loved it loved it ...
I could imagine the reactions of your parents ... BP and I did this during our first visit to India after marriage ... (do read about our engagement in my blog)
Since my parents had met their SIL, BP only for about 2 weeks, we wanted to see if they could recognise him if he stood at their door step one fine morning! And thats what we did ... one fine morning, we landed in our town and BP knocked on the door, while I hid ... my parents were just speechless ... it took them almost 2 hrs to get back to reality!
In case I didn't mention, of course they recognised their SIL !!!

sdhivya said...

A family full of love !! God Bless you all. Was very nice to read it. And I can totally relate to the ILs bit. LOL.. Faced it too.