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October 25, 2010

O Re Kaanchi...


Ashu danced on stage for the first time on Saturday. It was a group dance with 5 other girls. I had never thought that Ashu will ever climb a stage, least of all dance in the near future. Shes extremely self conscious. So when a month back, an Indian school mom suggested a group dance by the kids, I reluctantly signed up Ashus name and was ready to accept Ashus decision if she wanted to quit. On the first day of practice, I wanted to beg her to quit because she was err.... not graceful. (And Im being kind here.) Another mom and I were the choreographers and I was cursing Hd for passing on the two left feet gene to our daughter! (of course, hes to be blamed!) She was also the youngest in the group. Us two moms were exhausted after every practice what with making 6 precocious kids dance to our tunes and not to mention all their younger siblings wandering around and distracting everybody at every turn! But we did it somehow. Ashu slowly progressed from not-dancing to exercising to partial-dancing. Grace is a long time away but Im not complaining. ( Cute little girls in cute little outfits! Whats there to complain about? ) I am so proud that she did nt quit. That she cooperated so nicely during practice. That though she was the youngest, she acted mature. That she remembered all the steps. That she made friends. But most of all, that she had fun and enjoyed herself.

Since the successful performance,the choreographers decided to milk the situation and make the group perform the same dance in two more events next month. As long as its not a dance competition, we have nothing to worry. ;)

October 19, 2010

Googly.

Ashu and Antu were sitting on the kitchen counter while I was going about making our evening hot chocolate/milk/tea.

Antu - Amma, where is Appa?

Me: He is in Germany, Antu. Actually hes on a plane now. He ll be home tonight.

Ashu: On a plane? *does a plane sound*

Me: Yes. Hes in Germany and hes flying from there *pointing to Antus nose* and coming to Zurich. *pointing to Ashus nose*

(The girls giggle.)

Ashu - Amma! Is Germany bigger than Switzerland or smaller?

Me -
*thinking to myself how geographically inclined my daughter is* Germany is bigger, Ashu.

Ashu - Then why did you point to Ashu's nose as Germany? I am Germany and she's Switzerland.

Me - You are right. My mistake. Im sorry. *rolls eyes*

(pause.)

Ashu - And you know what Amma?

Me - *uh ho* What?

Ashu - You are U.S.A. because you are so beeg!

Me - *sigh*

I should have listened to the warning bells and changed the subject. I never see what's coming.

October 16, 2010

Locarno.

Since Ashus school is closed for autumn break, Hd took two days off and we went to Locarno last weekend for four days. The weather was warmer than here though it was a bit cloudy the first 2 days. We were so scared that it will turn like our Como trip since we were going in the same direction. But the next 2 days were fabulous. We stayed in a fully furnished flat. I think its someones holiday home. I fell in love with the place. It was so tastefully decorated. Simple but classy. Futons and single beds in the living room where the kids slept. A beautiful bedroom with a blue theme going. A spacious balcony where we had our breakfast everyday with a fantastic view of the Lake Maggiore. A dream kitchen with everything I needed. TV, Music system, books, tourist info, board games, ... I was blown away by how thoughtfully the place was done. Sigh.


We had a perfect vacation by getting up late, eating breakfast and getting out of the house in time for lunch. Eating yummy food at the Italian joints, sight seeing, idly walking by the lake, window shopping, gobbling gelatos,... and getting back to our place for dinner. Dinner was some ready to eat stuff out of the packets. We went on the mini train ride around the city. It has become a must in every place we go, thanks to Ashu. Another day we took a funicular and went up to Orselina and a cable car from there to Cardada. The views were amazing and the place also had a nice park in the woods. We also drove to Valle(y) Maggia. In the lakeside park in Locarno, there was a trampoline and Ashu jumped with harness and all and also learnt to flip. It was fun to watch her.


On Tuesday morning, we checked out and drove to Valle(y) Verzasca which is a 25 kms drive from Locarno. It was AMAZING. One of the best drives ever. So scenic and so beautiful. I could nt believe that we have been in Swiss for so long and never came here before. We stopped at Lavertazzo, crossed the double arched stone bridge and hiked amidst rocks to go near the river. Its a crystal clear blue river. The photos don't do justice. We could nt get enough of the beauty of the river. We drove on to the end of the valley to a village called Sonogno. A tiny place with stone houses. So picturesque. We had lunch there. Then retraced our route back to Locarno. Stopped on the way to see the Verzasca dam where James Bond did the bungee jumping stunt in Golden Eye. Was scary to even look! Hd wanted to bungee jump but after seeing the 220 metres high dam, he said, "no way!" (paithyam dhaan ingendhu kudhikkum* were his exact words!) LOL! Then we hit the road back home.


One morning, Hd and I woke up to the voices of the kids. They both were sitting in the living room and the conversation we heard went like this.

Ashu: Do you want to kill me, Antu?
Antu - No.
Ashu - Not really kill, ok? Just pretend. And not me. My horse.
Antu - OK.
Ashu - Move something. Do you want to move this?
Antu - No. This one.
Ashu - No Antu. You CANT move my dead bishop. Move something else.
Antu - (silence)
Ashu - (storms in to our bedroom) Amma! Its not fun. This Antu is not listening to me at all. She does nt know how to play chess!
Me - !!!!

ps.
Ashu does nt know how to play chess either. She just uses Antu as a pawn in all her games! ;)

*only a crazy person would jump from here.

October 14, 2010

Phone Booth.

(Wife calls the Husband at work around 6 pm.)

Wife: Still in office? What are you doing?

Husband: Its not even 6 yet.

W: So?

H: Did I tell you I will be leaving at 6?

W: Did you tell me you will be leaving later?

H: No.

W: Then whats wrong in me asking?

H: Its only 6. Thats why. *sighs*

W: *yells* Dude! You should be happy that you have someone in your life who loves you, misses you and is waiting for you at home with your kids! So stop this sighing business, ok? You so don't deserve me. Heres a person who actually cares about you and you don't even appreciate...

H: *hurriedly* I am sorry. I am sorry.

W: *smiles* Lets try this one more time. When are you coming home?

H: I will leave in another half an hour.

W: Good. See you then. Bye.

H: Bye.

Im sure he sighed again after he hung up.

October 05, 2010

Little Miss. Smarty-Pants.


Ashu strongly believes that one day Antu will catch up with her and they both can be twins and go to the same class, look alike, do the same things, etc... etc... And I totally understand where shes coming from because when I was a kid all I ever wanted to be was a twin. "Twins" was such a magical word. Ashu has a twin in her class this year and its a fascinating experience for her. Even though the other twin is in a different class, they all meet during recess and Ashu is always proudly declaring how she always know the difference but the boys always get confused. (they wear different dresses everyday, duh!)

I burst Ashus bubble and told her that Antu will always be younger than her. They can never be the same age. But she threw a googly at me and asked, "Amma! When I become big and you are dead, can Antu be my baby?" Sigh! I should learn to keep my mouth shut.

The other day she was being very difficult and I yelled at her. She got very upset and marched off to her room. I took some time to cool off too and then went to talk to her. But its like talking to a wall when shes upset. Nothing works. So I tell her, "Listen Ashu. You have a choice. Lets just hug each other, move on and make this day happy. Or you can keep on sulking and make this day sad. What are you going to do?" She looks at me and says, "I don't like both the choices." "OK. So what do you want to do?", I ask her. "I want to play some game with you", she says. Sigh. I wish my demands were so simple too.

Last week, she came home from school and told me, "Today we had to pick a non-fiction book from the library, Amma." And I was all, "What?" So she explains, "Non fiction books are not stories. You learn something. Like about animals or birds or people." Oh, OK. And how do you know if a book is fiction or non fiction, I asked. "I just look at the spine label, Amma, Its marked!" But of course!

Ashu also educated me on what is symmetry. "If we slice our body in two halves from top to bottom, everything on the right matches the left, Amma. So we are symmetrical" and also folded a paper in two halves, opened, sprayed some paint, closed and opened. and showed me the symmetry on both the sides. "Even this baby is symmetrical, Amma. Look at her eyebrows", she said pointing at Antu. Poor Antu. Reduced to a lab experiment by her older sis!

Today we had the parents teachers meeting at school and as always I was tearing up hearing the teachers sing her praises.( For the money we pay, they better! ) Ashus class has this class stuffed toy which is given to one child each day to take home and then write a report on what the child did with the toy at home. Its fun. The kids think that they get it only if they are very well behaved in class and make good choices. Ashu got it the first time in the third week of school and patiently waited until then. She asked me once when she will get it and I told her that she has to make good choices. And she replied, "But I always make good choices, Amma!" Since its coming from Ashu and not Antu, I believed it too!! And today her teacher told me, "If I could, I will send her home with that toy everyday. Shes such a good kid!" Now what more does a mom need, you tell me!