Friday, June 21, 2013

It's a vicious cycle.

According to Eli's work people, it's not monsoon season yet, but my wet sneakers beg to differ. I wanted to take Eli out to lunch for Father's Day, so we had the driver take us to TGI Fridays at one of the malls.  It had been raining all day, but we didn't think anything of it because it was just a steady rain, no crazy meteorological events happening.  As we're driving to the mall, we notice that the closer we get to MG Road (the main street with most of the malls on it) the deeper the water in the road gets.  There's an elevated train that runs parallel to MG Road, so all the water that was falling on the tracks was draining right onto the road beneath.  There were drainage pipes that were obviously meant to corral the water, but every single one of them was broken apart near the top.  Still, it didn't seem like that big of a deal.  Cars were still swerving around each other, people on motorcycles and bikes were zipping right through the puddles, no big.  After a longer trip than usual thanks to all the people who decided to just stop in the road and park under the elevated train, we came to the mall with the Fridays in it.  There was a long blob of cars (people don't do lines here) being somewhat controlled by a couple of uniformed guys.  I was pretty sure they were police, but there were just as many people ignoring them as there were following orders.  We pulled around the mass of the blob and swerved in near the front, Indian-style.  The cop told us that we couldn't pull into the mall because the underground parking was flooded.  That explained the mass of cars exiting the area.  The Fridays wasn't actually in the mall, more adjacent to it, and we didn't actually need to park since our driver could go on his merry way and come pick us up when we were done, so we told him to pull up to the corner and we'd walk the short distance to the restaurant.  I wish we'd been able to take some pictures once we exited the car, but Eli flat out refused to get his phone out when there was that much water around.  So the car pulls up surprisingly close to the curb considering the depth of the water, and we prepare to hop out.  Eli jumps down and immediately curses.  I'm unbuckling D from his carseat, so I'm not particularly concerned with how wet his feet just got.  Eli slogs around to my side and takes D because there's no way in hell he's walking through that typhoid water.  I follow Eli out of the car and immediately curse myself.  One of my shoes got dunked in the brown gutter water.  I was still holding out hope at that point that I'd have one dry foot, so I tiptoed toward the curb, trying to find the highest ground, and stopped about a foot away.  The water was noticeably deeper the closer I got.  Let me just explain that the curbs in India are somewhere between one and two feet high.  Up until that moment, I had no idea why.  The water was sloshing just over the top of the curb, and I thought maybe I understood.  It was still raining, and I was trying to hold my umbrella over my purse at least (my electronic goodies were in there, I do have priorities).  I decided to try the leap.  I've gone farther before, but I wasn't sure I'd make the upward angle.  I stepped into the shallow water with my wet foot and pushed off.  My body stretched and for one glorious moment I was on the curb, then my foot slipped off the edge and all my weight came down with a splash.  On the plus side, the only part I got wet was the foot that had already been soaked, on the negative side, Eli was standing in the rain with D laughing at me from the other side of the curb.  I chalked it up to a good try, and went to join Eli.  Then I realized the real reason he was laughing.  The parking lot area from the curb to the steps leading up to the Fridays was also underwater.  Eli was almost knee-deep and getting wetter by the second.  I shooed him forward and sighed.  At least I was wearing capris.  Here's a little diagram for you visual learners out there:
I measured the water on my leg when we got home.  13 inches.

We made it inside to join the other dripping patrons for lunch.  It rained the whole time we were eating, and when we left, the water was only deeper. The driver stopped in the same place to pick us up, again surprising me at how deep he was willing to take the car.  At some point during lunch, my umbrella decided it was done with this mess and refused to close, so when we got to the car, I had to hold it closed or risk death by umbrella spine.  Eli finally unclenched enough on the drive home to take a few pictures.

That's the road that we were driving on.
We had to turn around at one point because there were cars stuck in the water on the road.  Luckily, once we turned into the more affluent area where we live the roads were easier to navigate.  That just meant that they were built at a steeper angle, so the width of one lane was only slightly underwater. It was the only time I've seen Indians driving in one lane.  Even then, there were people who didn't feel like waiting so they sped through the water next to us.  Even without the wakes from the cars and motorcycles (that's right a couple of brave guys revved past us on motorcycles), the water was up to the tops of the wheel wells on the car in front of us.  When we were being passed, the water arched over the top of the car.  It was an experience.
That tuk tuk is fearless.
 Eli got a picture of a tuk tuk (the green and yellow tricycle thing) braving the deep end.  Those things are completely open, so anyone inside of it was swimming.  The rest of the pictures didn't really turn out since our driver decided it was his time to show off his Nascar skills and also we were constantly being doused with water from other vehicles.  We got home just fine, if somewhat squelchy.  The area around our complex wasn't too bad, and we live on the 11th floor, so I wasn't worried about our stuff in particular.  Needless to say, D did not get to go to the pool that day.  He wanted to hit the playground two days later, but it was still one giant puddle, much to his delight and my dismay.  Cue toddler meltdown.

Speaking of toddler funness.  We've managed to teach D that if he hurts someone, he should kiss the ouchie to make it better.  Unfortunately, he thinks that makes it okay to hit people as long as he kisses it better after.  He was in the bath the other night smashing the crap out of his toy frogs and other bath paraphernalia on the edge of the empty tub.  After a minute, he goes "uh oh" and starts kissing them all better.  I ran for the camera.
That's right, we have a jacuzzi tub.
And one for all the ladies at home.
We're now working on teaching him it's not good to hurt people even if you have the power to kiss it better.  It's a work in progress.

Now I know some of you have seen the pictures of Eli on Facebook, so I thought I'd address it here.  Yes, he cut his hair.  We've been talking about it for a while because of the heat here.  He keeps getting this ridiculous rash along his back where his hair sits.  I think it might also have something to do with him finally making the push into management.  I keep telling him it's his version of a mid-life crisis.  He sold his Harley and his Mustang, had a kid, and cut his long hair.  What's next, polo shirts and Dockers?  Despite my incessant teasing, he's really happy with the shorter hair.  The other day he was putting product in it and actually said "playing with hair is fun."  He was smiling, but he wasn't sarcastic.  I'm glad he's happy and I think he looks just as good with short hair as he did with long hair (I'd also like it noted that I in no way influenced his decision other than to provide feedback on possible short hairstyles for him and some questions to ask at the salon).  Everyone so far, me included, thinks the new short hair makes him look a lot younger.  Check it out:


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

You could see how he got it confused.

Just a quick post today since I'm suffering from jet lag and want to take a nap.  D was great on the plane and we had very few problems getting back to our apartment.  I realized I left food in the microwave back home, but that's easy enough to fix.  It was crazy hot in our apartment when we arrived, but we cranked all the ACs to 21 (that's degrees in Celsius) and it quickly cooled down.  Well, every room except our bedroom.  That AC is just blowing warm air, which is not really helping me to not sweat.  There's a guy coming to fix it today, but sleeping in there last night sucked.

I got an early start this morning  and was feeling all proud of myself for getting to the store first thing (since we had no food in the kitchen).  We got to the mall that has my usual grocery store for when I need to buy a lot of stuff, and I went in.  Only to realize that it was 10am and nothing opened until at least 11.  So I called the driver and we went to the store by my house where I bought half of my groceries.  We'll have to get the other half tonight.  Welcome back to India.

On the plane, shortly after takeoff, Eli, D, and I were snacking on peanuts while the attendants got food ready.  D dropped some peanuts on his tray, so Eli told him to "grab your peanuts."  Out of the corner of my eye, I saw D's hand move, but not toward the tray.  Eli started snorting and laughing.  He could barely say, "No, I said peanuts, not penis."  I started laughing, so Eli looked at me and explained: "he immediately grabbed his junk."  I couldn't speak so I just nodded.  D thought it was awesome that he made both his parents crack up by grabbing himself.  So awesome that he tried it again, but it must not have been as good with us already laughing because he stopped at that point.  That was the highlight of my trip.