Friday, September 7, 2012


Eli has been sending out update emails, so I'm thinking of adding his thoughts on here for anyone not on the email list. Here are some more of my thoughts from Wednesday and Thursday:

I had my table stolen at lunch. I went down to the buffet (I know, I'm working on becoming one of those holy cows), and my purse was obviously not good enough to hold my table. It was probably just a mistake since the waitstaff seats each table and my purse was doing a good job of blending in with the floor. Let's get this straight right now, I love Indian food, but every single Indian dish I've tried here has seriously injured my tastebuds. Eli gave me some potato pancake thing this morning and said "it's a little spicy." I took a bite and had to drain the water bottle I'd just received. Then I couldn't taste anything the whole rest of the meal, which pretty effectively limited my time at the dessert bar. And seriously, who thought it was a good idea to have a magnificent dessert bar at breakfast? I can't fit into my pants anymore. Gah. I had steak at lunch too. It was really good, and interestingly enough, it was the only serving spoon that wasn't dirty (yes, they were little steaks served with a big spoon). We eat in there enough that the staff recognizes me. Our usual waiter came by to ask "Where is Sir?" As if Sir was his name. I've had the same experience with Rebecca, the nanny. She calls me Ma'am as a name, but it's also used as a noun. Like "How can you talk to your Ma'am with your bad English?" I actually overheard that comment from Rebecca's brother, who was on the phone with her. All the staff call me Ma'am as a name, but it was really easy to get used to. I think we're going to have to find a new nanny, unfortunately. Dante loves Rebecca, and she's nice with a lot of energy, but she's unreliable. This is her first week of work and two of the days she showed up late, two days she wanted our driver to take her home, and today she asked for the day off. Unreliable. I really wanted a live-in nanny anyway. Now that we have an apartment picked out, we can actually house a live-in nanny. Of course, since we have a not-live-in nanny, we've been interviewing live-in all-rounders (domestic help who cook/clean/launder/basically do everything). I know we have a servant's quarters, but I wonder if it would be big enough for two. Probably not, they're pretty tiny.

We found an apartment I love, but there are some conditions that had to be worked out with the owner, like furniture. The preliminary contract is being signed today, then the real contract will be signed when we get it in like a week. Then we'll move in. In the meantime, I'm supposed to go shopping with the owner to pick out the furniture. I hope it works out okay because I have no idea what kind of budget he's considering. Until the apartment is ready, we're staying in the hotel, which has lost some of it's shine. We must have 8 or 9 keycards at this point because they keep breaking. I don't mean Dante is snapping them in half (though he does keep trying to eat them); I mean they stop working so that I can't access any of the hotel areas. The elevator, the fitness center, our room...all need a key card to get into. I'll leave my room with a card I assume works, but then I'll get stuck in the fitness room because I can't get the elevator to work with a card. That happened this morning at 7am. Eli was trying to sleep in, and I had to call and wake him up because I was stuck on the Lower Lobby level. Eli never seems to have this problem. I hypothesize that I'm coming into my superpowers and that's throwing off the magnetics in the card. Clearly.

I went to a meeting yesterday of a group called Gurgaon Connection. It's for expats living in Gurgaon. The meeting was a coffee date for all the newcomers (meaning living here for less than 3 months). It was very enlightening. First, it was happening at the Aralias complex, which now has me drooling to live there. The central park/pool/fitness area is amazing. It looks like the Hawaii of my dreams. Of course, it's 3 lakh rupees to live there (about $6000 per month), but the apartments are 5 bedrooms with a huge terrace and about 6000 square feet. Honestly, I don't need that much space, I just want to be near the community area. Also, these places all have little convenience stores in the complex that sell fresh fruit and stuff. When I say fresh, I mean it just came from the farm. Imagine access to a farmer's market every day. The Exotica, where our apartment is, isn't finished yet. I could see the pool from our balcony, but it didn't have any water in it. We were told that they'd finish the fitness center/convenience store/pool/etc after they've finished all the towers...sometime next year. The green space and the kid's play area are nice, and there were kids using them when we came through to tour the apartment. That's a good sign to me. What am I going to do without easy access to a fitness center? Eli and I talked about getting an elliptical machine for our apartment since that's pretty much the only thing I use in the gym. I like the plan, but it depends on the cost. I guess I could always join a gym here. Or convince one of the ladies I met who live at the Aralias to let me mooch off of their fitness center. It's just down the street.

Oops, I got distracted...right, I went to a coffee meet-up, and I learned a lot. Like that the police found a dead body in the field just outside the Aralias main gate (all these communities are surrounded by serious walls and gates). Apparently, the guy was murdered and left somewhere he would be easily found as a warning. That discussion was followed up with assurances that Gurgaon is perfectly safe during the day. The three ladies running the group warned us all (all female) not to go out alone at night. They also made clear that going out with just your driver is the same as going out alone. I was convinced. Not that I could leave at night anyway without someone here to watch Dante. Now, if we had a live-in nanny.... Hmm.

Almost forgot the pictures:

I want this woman's saree, pale green and gold.

This is not banana pudding, I don't care what the menu says.

The evil breakfast dessert bar.

Eli found Hoegaarden here at our hotel...we can't even find it in Milwaukee.

The lobby, need I mention the art?

The entrance to the pool.  The fitness center is actually inside that hill/fountain, on the right.

The area between the lobby and the pool/awesome fountain thing.

The other side of the grassy area.

And finally, the pool...well, half of it.

something that I want
something that I tell myself I need
something that I want
and I need everything I see

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