Sunday, March 27, 2011

Internet Outages, Death Marches and Sore Throats, OH MY!

Hello!  I have been working against some tough over the past couple days.   But it is Sunday here and we are having an enforced day of rest before what is going to a whirlwind of a week, so let's get you all up to speed.

Just about every afternoon here we have a little power outage.  Dellip rushes in and plays with fuses and generally it's all restored within 30 minutes.  Small blips reminding us that we are not in Kansas anymore!  I can deal with it.  Well day before yesterday we had more than a blip and lost our internet connection for about 24 hours!  Savage world!  Now that we could NOT deal with!! All of our lines of communication (and most of our entertainment other than Neve) crashed to a halt -- skype, vonage phone, use of computers (ie blogging or internet surfing), Hamish's work, etc. -- all GONE in an instant.

Dellip set to work making phone calls and fumbling around with the router, but it took a repairman the next day to get us back on line.  The previous day I had luckily downloaded the Eclipse movie (yes, from the Twilight series, I am not ashamed!) .  Note to non-computer people like me on downloading movies from i-tunes.  I sat down to download the movie just before I wanted to watch the movie, but turns out it does no work that way.  The thing took 8 hours to download!  WTH?? Not exactly solving my entertainment needs, but at least it was all stored up for the internet outage period.  Poor Hamish was doubly miserable because he had to take the night off of work but refused to watch Eclipse.  Instead I had my head phones on and he peered at the screen making comments that I could not hear (something about hating the fake wolf parts).  The headphones are a brilliant cure to Hamish tv commentary and will be instituted when we get back to NY!

Just as the internet was restored the next day, we set out on what was supposed to be about an hour errand running outing.  Then we realized that this is likely our last week in India and we started adding on little tasks.  First stop was the tailor (to make skirts our of the fabric I had bought before Neve was born).   She sat us down in her living room and gave us nice cold lime drinks and biscuits.  She called in the seamstress guy (guess she is more of a facilitator?) and we did our thing with the skirts, made nice small talk, admired her home (all mid century modern -- like something right out of Dwell Magazine!).  As we were leaving she asked where to next and we told her -- M Block Market - and she said, oh no, it's way to hot, you should go to the Mall instead.  She assured us we could get all that we needed at the Mall and have a much more pleasant experience and it was only five minutes away, and - well, we totally bought it.

Let me just stop here to point out a couple things.  Hamish and I have a way of setting out on one task and getting drawn into others until the outings become long, painful death marches that suck the life out of us.  We are aware of it, we joke about it, but we ALWAYS fall right into the same routine.  It's truly one of the reasons we ended up buying a weekend house  -- we just could not break the cycle on our own.  We still do death marches on weekends, but now we just call it "hiking" and somehow everyone feels a whole lot better about it!

Next thing to point out -- we were not intending to be gone long and had only brought along two bottles, which in a perfect world should have lasted us 6 hours (cause we fed Neve just before we left).  But with babies, there is no such thing a perfect world.

So off we go to the Mall.  Turns out the Mall is more like 30 minutes away and it's about 90 degrees out, so even with the a/c in the car, it's sort of hot and when you get out of the car with a baby strapped to your chest, it's REALLY hot!  The Mall is something right out of a mid-level mall in Florida, big, lots of stores, but even after walking the whole thing, it did not actually have half of what we were after.  Neve demanded bottle one about half way through the Mall experience.  I note that and feel a slight increase in blood pressure.

We get a quick lunch and at the end Neve rouses and -- DEMANDS BOTTLE NUMBER TWO.  Gulp!! At this point EPs would have realized that they were in trouble.  The sane thing to do would have been to abort the errands and head home immediately.  But no, we are newbies and it's a death march - so we soldier on.  We've got two hours more in our pocket --right??  We just have to keep moving!!

The traffic is a mess and the market we really should have gone to in the first place (and have to go to now) is full up because it's Saturday.  So I leap from the car and run to the two stores we need to hit while Hamish and Neve inch along in the car.  Ok, so some time made up.  Next to the SCI office to finish some paper work.  We arrive and everyone wants to talk and take photos with Neve and they have to send someone out to get copies and it will only take 10 minutes.   And I'm starting to freak out, cause I know we are bottleless and we are in the danger zone and we have to go -- NOW.  I'm big fake smiling and rushing us out the door and then it happens.  The dragon awakens.

When Neve is hungry she does a series of cat like cries that don't seem particularly alarming and if nothing happens within the next 5 minutes she lets you know that she is dead serious about being fed NOW and the cat sounds sound more like cat stuck in the fan belt type of territory.  Before we get in the car, the small cat cries start and by the time we are home, she is fully stuck in the fan belt.  By the time we get her a bottle, she had shattered out nerves, cried big real tears and let us know in no uncertain terms that we are total crap parents.  Nice!

Funny thing is after all that bad treatment, Neve actually smiled at me that night after the bottle.  I think she's trying a new tactic with us.  The "you people are terrible at this" treatment having not been successful, so she may be going with the "if they think I like them, maybe they will feed me" approach.  Either way, the smile was greatly appreciated and I certainly look forward to more to come!!

My final impediment has been coming down with a sore throat.  It's not terrible, it's not mild -- it's just the kind of sore throat that's sitting there waiting to decide whether it wants to totally take you out or just go away as quickly as it came.  Not great timing as we get to the end of our Delhi stay and move on to the travel portion of the journey - which is likely to take much more out of me.  So, other than the death march I have been lying low, napping, not exercising, eating oranges etc.  Throat, heal thyself or else!!

Last night we made some progress with the dinner menu.  We had been trying for a few days to get spinach paneer but kept getting tiki paneer.  Not a tragedy, but we wanted some dark greens - bad!  So Dellip asked us to write down "spinach" which we did and the next morning at breakfast he came back with a child like picture book of vegetables -- the page open to spinach!!  It was genius!!  He was so excited and we were so excited - we actually went through the rest of the book together commenting on what vegetables we like.  No, don't care for beet root, yes, we like cucumbers, no, we don't really eat okra, etc.  And the grand presentation of spinach paneer last night was something to behold.  We cleaned our plates and it was delicious.  I plan to incorporate spinach paneer into my regular menu back home to remind of Dellip and that vegi book and our precious time in Delhi!


G, H & N

Hamish and Dellip going over the vegetable book.

Neve loves tummy time and is getting really strong!

She also loves to wiggle herself into this strange position and pass out!


  1. I'm not laughing at you, I am laughing with you. (Ya, right!!! Someone just said that to me the other day with my impending fear of having twins LOL). What wonderful memories you will have for many, many years to come. I feel like I am right there in India with you. :)

  2. Hope you're feeling better with all those leafy greens inside! We had the same experience in Mumbai with a baby, a mall far away from "home" and lack of parental planning (in my case, I brought the bottle and the formula, but not the nipple!) Looks like you're all doing just great, though!

  3. In MBlock there is a Himilayan herbs store - they will have a sore throat rememdy for sure! You have a busy week ahead and need to stay strong...soon, HOME!!!
    Great blog, I really enjoy reading your updates.

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