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August 26, 2009

I can safely say Good Bye to that Mother Teresa Award.

The unthinkable happened today. So I drop Ashu at school, then go to do groceries with Fil and Antu. I finish shopping and come back to the car park, load the groceries in the car, take Antu from the trolley, strap her in the car seat and while Fil stands near the car, I go to keep the trolley back and to pay for the parking. I come back to find that the car is locked and Fil looking at me quizzically. Thats when I remember that I gave the care key to Antu when she was in the trolley. Oops! So little Miss is locked inside with the car key and Fil and I are locked out! The little monkey! (Of course its all Antus fault!) I swore a couple of times, Fil was completely stunned and did nt know what to do and asked me if I ve a spare car key in my handbag! Yeah right! I looked through the window to see if I can see the car key in Antus hands and may be she ll press it again and unlock the car? No such luck. So I ask for help from a guy who parked his car next to us. Is it possible to open the car, I ask him? He says he does nt have the tools and asks me where the key is! I again look at Antu munching on a bread and being quite happy with the situation. I can ask Fil to stand guard while I take a cab, go home and get the spare key but it will take at least 30 mins for me and I was nt even sure the spare key was at home. Hd usually carries it with him and today hes not even in town! And what will Antu do inside a locked car for 30 mins? At least she was safe strapped in the car seat, I tell myself.

Then I tell Fil that I ll go ask help from the store people and walk towards the elevator. I pass the line of trolleys on the way and something tells me to look inside the last cart. And whaddayaknow? The car key is there!! Can you believe this? I let out a silent scream, grabbed the car key and ran towards the car. Fil was so relieved. So Antu had dropped the key in the cart and when I went to put back the trolley, the key got struck in the part where the kids sit and when it got folded, it had pressed the car key and the car got locked. Can anything be more weirder than this? I sent a silent prayer upwards and drove home thanking my lucky stars. Thorough out this very long 5 minutes ordeal, I had only one thought in my mind. A single thought that tormented me. The only thought which saw me through. "Why? Why? Why? Why did this have to happen in front of the FIL?" Sigh! Now the whole Madras and its Athimber will know. Next time you hear from someone about the loony mom who locked her baby inside the car, yes its me!


Rush said...

Hi Boo,

I'm so glad everything worked out well at the end. I can so relate to how you feel when something goes wrong (especially) in front of the inlaws. I'm currently hosting mine at home and I had the "why did it have to happen in front of them" moment(mil to be more specific) when a bunch of sad looking idlies came out of the cooker with the maavu I had so proudly made.

Well, we'll all survive! This too shall pass!

By the way I've been a silent reader of babytalk for a long time and a big fan of Ashu, Antu and the person who writes about them! :)

Manchus said...

Boo, can you get a spare key made from the local hardware store? If so go for it and keep it safe in your handbag. But then, if you are like me, I sometimes leave the handbag in the carseat while I am putting the kids in the car. But anyways try to get one made and keep it at home if you like so that you can go and grab it anytime. I keep the doors open when I seat the kids and other thing I do is roll down half the window of the driver seat.

Anonymous said...

Another silent reader, I left the car on drive (don't ask me why ?) jumped into the moving car when the door was open and changed the gear ( all this in front of the bewildered f-i-l).

I crossed a railway track and a train zipped thro' a few seconds after (my f-i-l made me promise that would be the last time I would do that)

Going through a previous comment ,in freezing winter it is not fun leaving half the window open and there is a high chance I might have left my hand bag in the shopping cart !!

Boo, I empathise :)

Praveen said...

And I thought only MIL's big mouth all this to athai's and athimbers?? FILs do it too????

Anonymous said...

God bless Antu. My daughter would've screamed her head off if left alone in the car for a while. Please, please don't give the key to her again. I could almost feel the tension while reading your post. Your FIL is the sweet type, he won't tell anyone about it. My guess :)

Shobana said...

Glad that you found the keys!

Cantaloupes.Amma (CA) said...

The thought of Mother Teresa award slipping away while you were panicking about the lost keys ... ah ! What a torture you have been through !
Glad you found the keys :)

Anonymous said...


I wonder wht gets on us when we are with our in-laws...All that I do in front of them transforms as blunders...
My FIL wud give a point to point detailed report on his stay with us to my MIL that will get passed on like wild fire..

Thank Goodness, everything went well.

B o o said...

Rush - thanks for deluriking. And hugs to you. I had the same idli moment last week. HATE it when that happens, no?

Manu - Hd came back in the evening and grabbed the spare key from him. Like you said, I change handbags and such, so not a good idea. but still...

Silent reader - Cant help laughing at your antics! your fil still travels with you while you are driving? ;)

Praveen - The anon after CAs comment got it. Fil will tell only one person - THE MIL! :D

Inba - Read my reply to Praveen. Fils sweet but not sweet enough not to tell Mil! ;)

Shobana - Never ever have a set of keys made me so happy!

CA - I ll mail you the torture bit when I speak to the Mil next time! :)

Anon - Come here and give a hug. We both will get along very well. And to think that I have covered up so many blunders from them and still the ones they know are one too many!

Anonymous said...

Here is the silent reader again, yes he does and guess what I did (been married for 12 yrs and they visit often) my son left the sliding door of the van open and I backed out of the garage..
They (in-laws) supported me when my husband came home. Must be some punyam from the last janmam.

utbtkids said...

OMG. One of my worst nightmares. Glad that there was an sweet anti-climax to it.

My first nightmare used to be me leaving Mieja strapped in her car seat on the pavement and driving away.

Thanks to your sister the current nightmare that hounds me is me backing the car on kids :( Grrrrr!

Oh that and breaking my leg. Considering half the world I know has suffered from a fracture in the last 5 years, something at the back of my mind keeps nagging me that my turn will come :(

I kissed my MT award bye when 14 month old Mieja, who used to hate to be restrained, some how wiggled out of her high chair while the rest of the family was hogging pooris in HSB. She fell down and the whole restaurant is looking at us in shock and what do R and I do? We burst out in to laughter so hard that we choke on our pooris. I am surprised that CPS wasn't called.

Okay, time for me to shut it.

Anonymous said...

OMG. This is my worst nightmare of all time and I am damn scared to go alone with my 16 month old baby. If this has happenned to him, he would have drawn the whole world's attention with his scream (emm he screams like that when he wakes up from sleep and when he can't trace my face anywhere in the room :( ).

couple of simple things to help you out with this kind of situation which I follow.

1. I always carry a cross shoulder bad or a backpack while going out with the baby
2. I have a spare key made from local hardware store , which I keep it in my wallet . I can open the car door just in case.(this helps provided you carry the purse with you all the time
3. Give a spare car key to your friend(s) who can drive to your destination in case of emergency.
4. Worst case, always have the locksmith number handy so you can call him asap.
5. I consiously practised art of putting the car keys inside the bag/pant pocket whenever I use them after the arrival of the baby. If you visit US and if you see desi woman who keeps reaching out for keys 100 times within 10 minutes that's me : ).

BTW, My dear Boo,what on earth possessed you to give the car keys to a 12 month old baby ? Somebody is going to get preachy talk from hubby soon thanks to this incident ;).

MLC said...

all's well that ends well .. this wl remind u to b more careful nxt time! take care!

Anonymous said...

Question - does swiss not have auto clubs like triple a in US? Wherein if you locked your keys inside the car (happens all the time to normal human beings - so no guilt there), you can call for their assistance to open the car door.

If it is any aarudhal for you - I have locked my Hubby's 90 yr old granny (she was sleeping) inside the car with the keys, and waited outside with the ILLs (no typo here) until the granny woke up half an hour later - after our persistent efforts to wake her up! I used to always use the power door lock before I leave the car instead of using the keys. Well this episode changed that habit though.

There will be different such episodes and the FIL might forget this trivial! episode for reporting. It is also a good thing your FIL is here we are getting frequent posts.
(hey sudha if you are reading this - secondkku congrats. Boo bloga postbox aakiyachu.)

Vidooshak said...


I love happy endings. Thank God this one had one :-)

One thing bothers me: you were more worried about Fil than the Hd getting mad at you? Hmmm... he sounds like me now. No control over the biwi!!


Trish said...

OMG!!!my heart was in my mouth,the whole time I was reading the post!!!
thank God it all worked out fine..:)

Poppy said...

AAArgh. I feel for you, this should not have happened infront of the FIL< hubby would have been ok.

Scary moments. Have had many such WTF moments in the US. Thank god I moved back and have a driver now. I am totally unfit for all this stuff :)

What did the hubby say?

Unknown said...

Phew! i am a silent reader here.. n ur post had me biting my nails! I can so empathise with u.. just glad that the whole episode lasted just few minutes. n well! .. Mother teresa award can never be ours! .. each DIL loses it one day or the other.. just a question of when. :)

Mama - Mia said...


oh well! alls well thats ends well! i have done this too. and not even been lucky to find home keys! i was all set to break the glass on the side of the door and try and open it! then i asked the landlord and the sneaky devil (thank god) had the keys (inspite of telling us he didnt keep a copy!) and opened it after testing about 25keys in his bunch! phew!!

from then on Papa takes the responsibility of keeping the house key whenever he is visiting and we are going out! hehe!

oh! and my food is always bad in front of the MILs. things i even have mastery over! gah!!

you are such an awesome writer Boo!! :D



Sumana said...

Boo, feel sorry. But you still can claim the award for it was you who went back and searched in the cart. You can just sideline it saying it just got missed in the cart. the award is still yours from the IL's.. What say??/;)

B o o said...

Silent reader - share the punyam around! :)

utbt - fracture adhu idhu nu negative aa think panninaa, kaala udachuduven! :D Take care.

Anon - ya, i do all that usually. Yesterday was my stupid day! :(

MLC - Oh yeah! Until something more weirder happens!

Vee - 90 year old granny in front of the ils? Poor you! And glad the granny lived to tell the tale! ;) Yup, we ve the AAA kind. By the time I explain to them in my ottai German, I think Antu would pongi ezhundhufy like Manohar and come out of the car! :D
btw, whos Sudha? Congrats!

Vidooshak - Hd mad at me? ha ha ha! And you ve been reading my blog for how long? ;) He was plain relieved that he had a sound alibi in Geneva and I cant blame him for this incident by any remote chance! :D

Trish - Thank God indeed! You can say that again!

Poppy - he said "good thinking. I would have never gone and checked the trolley for the key". Theres a reason I married this man! ;)

Shruti - I never got the award in the first place to lose it! Im not even in the race anymore! :)

Thanks, Abha. That was my first thought too. "Let me break the window of the car". I hope my quoto of stupid days ends here.

b u b b l e s said...

//Sigh! Now the whole Madras and its Athimber will know.
Absolutely ROTFL..
A nail biter till the very end.. highlight being antu being happy with the bread pieces.. I still remember your " alavodu undu magizvidu vazhvom " bit.. :)

artnavy said...

Thank God!!

about madras knowing well u cant blame just FIL- ur blog is also so well visited by madrasis.....:-)

Dee said...

Geez...what an adventure....all's well as long as Antu is safe!

silentreader said...

Hi Boo,

first time commenter

Glad that everything ended well.
Did you get a chance to check your mails? I sent you a mail few days back

Anonymous said...

Woah, I am glad everythig ended so well.

BabaJain said...

Beta enjoyed your post. Glad it cleared one doubt I had but could not clear earlier. Did my taking care of the keys [both house and car] was offending my darlings in anyway. Reading their comments on your post cleared the doubt.

We, the in-laws, are still carring the cross of 'Acts of in-Laws' of the golden era. Today we are 'scared' of the bahus and not vice versa. Go ahead and do whatever your heart desires- we are on your side. haha

Mama - Mia said...

boo - the comment from Babajain is my pa in law (vidooshak's dad!). so now you have one whole family as your fan!! :D



Sachita said...

There must be a dirt collecting agency so that wwhenever anyone enquires you about the incident back in Madras, you can immediately shed the light back on their dirt.

Hema said...

Hi Boo,

Yet another silent reader! I visited your blog to comment on your previous post but it does n't matter since the issue is still about in-laws!

I agree with Rush. I don't know what they bring along when they visit but the dosais suddenly become hard and the chappatis lose their shape when I announce that no one should enter the kitchen but me! Am glad that your adventure lasted only (?) five minutes.

Now about your previous post....I would have broken my silence earlier but I was so dumbstruck after reading your previous post that it took me two whole days after a lot of eye-rubbing in disbelief that I managed to write today! I do the exact (I mean it... exact) same things when the FIL visits us alone and when both come together. In fact if I had decided to write a similar post you'd have probably sued me for plagiarism!! Especially the "when mom comes" part. I act as if I possess the kitchen and the general household (which I do) and behave just the opposite when my mom comes over! Taking advantage of my FIL's impaired hearing (or so I thought. I now have learnt that it was and is only a lack of concentration..anyway it is too late to fret now!)I even comfortably resorted to "nee vaa, anga po etc" to the husband:D . I am so glad that it is 'veetuku veedu vasapadi" whether the padi is in Zurich or Chennai!

I used to feel very silly and bad about this whenever I thought about it. Now I don't because I just don't think about it!

MiM said...

not only madras and its athimber...
Kuala Lumpur and its perimma has also heard...
hilarious post!

DotThoughts said...

Shit Boo, that could have been a dangerous situ. thank god you found the key..

Hurricane C said...

LOL! I can relate having in laws at home right now. Even if I drop something in a hurry it gets included in my 'dagaal' list! But again, this happens. And kudos you thought of looking in the cart.

Anonymous said...

Dear BOO,
Wow! Good that you found the keys in the cart. The way you wrote about the incident sounds like you were calm/cool in front of your fil. So maybe he'll just forget about the whole thing or not make a big deal even if he remembers to tell your mil. One can always hope at least a nomination for the MT award Na?
P.S: Looks like the in-laws post invoked lots of comments from silent readers. Guess that's the magic hold that the in-laws all over the world have on their daughter-in-laws.

Swapna said...

wow that was the second highest nightmare on my mental list of "Nightmarish situations in which I end up killing my own baby". The top position is occupied by dropping the baby just like that. Yeah I am a new mom.

But hey glad to know that it turned out well in a freakishly woman's intuitive power demonstrating way. Well, I am also a new reader so a shout out to you. Hope to know you better.

mnamma said...

Glad that all ended well Boo! I have locked myself out of my car twice before :( Such a pity, things like these happen in front of the ILs. Hope he finds better, tastier aval and forgets this :) (Loved the tags).

dipali said...

Strange things happen. Phew. I'm glad it was only for a short time, and that Antu didn't realize the drama in which she was starring:)

Sheela said...

This would be so inappropriate if all didn't work out well in the end - it is a great story to recount - and one that I am soo darn paranoid would happen to me soon... had an extra key made for our car and stuck it in my purse, just in case... D laughed at my craziness then, wait till he reads this now :)

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure how you imagined that the baby was safe in the car, if you had to be gone for 30 mins to get a spare!!! It is common for babies left in cars to die of suffocation and heat! just google it to read abt tons of such cases!!!

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