Honestly I could do these every day of the week and they would look quite different, there is no typical day. Today is especially unique here because all our friends are celebrating “Buckra Eid” . This is the first time we have not joined in the festivities of buying a new outfit and going to friends houses to eat. Josiah is in Delhi for a few days and I am holding down the fort with the kids.
Maybe its because I know I am leaving the country in just over a week and its like “senior -itus”, my mind has checked out, along with my patience for certain cultural encounters. But good or bad its a day nonetheless and I will share it.
I started off sleeping in till 9, which was nice because all the kids, except the baby (go figure) came in waking me up throughout the night.
I ended up with two extras in my bed this morning. I got up and made us all oatmeal and then talked to J for a few minutes. T went down for his morning nap shortly after while the kids played in the family room. I think I had to yell at them “STOP YELLING!” about 10 times while I prepared food and accessories for our picnic to the park later on. And I wonder why they don’t listen to me….
Vange came in 3 different times swearing that she didn’t have to use the restroom but holding herself as she danced around. She ended up changing her underwear 3 times before we left for our outing. She also collected two spankings for saying ” bad mommy!” as she walked away from me telling her she couldn’t do something she wanted to do.
Once I prepped our outing I sat down for a rest and heard a bang at the door. This was the fourth visitor since 7 o’clock this morning coming to ask for “eidy”. This time I decided to answer. It was the little boy that buys me basic grocery items daily, coming to show off his new outfit and ask for his gift of money (eidy). I greeted him ” Eid Mubarack!”, told him he looked nice and explained that my husband was out of town with all our money. I would give it to him later.
As I headed back toward my room another person knocked. I had never seen this man before so I asked “con he?” (who are you?) and he explained he was the new trash collector. “Muje opki pas pese nahee” (I don’t have any money) I said and smiled and shut the door.
2 more people knocked but I didn’t not answer, I contemplated putting a lock outside one door to signal that I was not home, to have a little peace and quiet but I was leaving soon so I decided not to.
I have a few minutes to read from aholyexperience.com , because I feel myself needing some inspiration in order to tackle the day ahead of me in a grace filled way. I watch a video of Ann and I am encouraged that she didn’t start seeing a big difference in her ability to rise above the baggage of her childhood and pass a legacy of joy onto her kids, until her youngest was a toddler. It’s not too late for me. I haven’t lost my chance to teach them grace and peace yet. I have a few years to get my act together, I am a long way off.
I herded us all, except T, in and out of showers and clothes and we headed out the door. As we exited the lift of our building I saw my husband’s friend and neighbor with his brother in law and two others cutting up the goat that they had just sacrificed and were about to cook. Wishing I had my camera to show you all what kinds of things we witness around the holidays we stayed and stared as I answered kids questions about stomachs and hooves, and sharp butcher knives. Fun!
We headed out to the street to catch a rickshaw and I tried two till I found one that knew where I wanted to go.
Once we got past all the speed bumps on our street we enjoyed the breeze, cool weather and non crowded streets. Only the sea of “white men”, men in traditional white kurta shirts for the day, were out finishing up the sacrifice duties and mingling.
It was great to be out of the house and I was looking forward to this adventure. Too bad we are leaving for the US in the best weather of the year. (Note to self: go back in the mid summer next time.)
We stop at a roadside place to buy some sour cream and onion chips, a little taste of home and 2 bottles of water. All the regular shops are closed for the holiday.
We arrive and I leave extra change with the Rickshaw wallah as a gift for Eid. He was grateful and friendly.
We walked quite aways to the open field area intentionally not going to the playground area as not to get mobbed by kids. To no avail!
As we sat in the shade eating our lunch, kids came and stood 3 feet away just staring. About 20 men came and sat on the grass just a few feet away quietely watching us eat and talk. When the young boys rode their bike right up to us and were falling all over the place trying to fit 4 on, but nearly falling on Arwyn, they were so close, I hollered at them to leave. I was starting to get annoyed as man after man came and sat by us and the mob of kids grew larger. How do celebs handle fame with grace? I couldn’t even handle it on a much smaller scale.
10 minutes of failed attempts to send people away and I knew we just needed to leave. We packed up and walked back to the exit. The mass of people dispersed and went to something else exciting. Now I know what my friend felt like when she came to this park.
I headed to our usual park hoping that it was quite deserted. I suggested we all pray that we can have peace and quiet at the park, as I was trying to leave behind the negative feelings of the last encounter and switch all our gears. I got lost in thought about wanting a surprise from God in this way when I realized Vange, sitting next to me was praying for our time ahead, and I was touched.
It was great to see our spot with only 3 or four groups of men all spread out over the place. I headed to a remote spot on the back side of the park and noticed a guy on his phone walking along with us. As soon as we sat down he stopped and sat and within minutes his whole group of men were sitting feet away from us! As they tried to be sly about taking pictures, I had the kids all turn around so all our backs were to them, hoping to send the message that we wanted privacy. They didn’t care.
So I packed us up and headed to the back side of the park, I hadn’t ventured there before. There was a nice square of lawn, enough trees here and there to hide us from the entrance and people roaming around. I was thankful. For nearly an hour we enjoyed ourselves playing frisbee, and paddleball with no people in sight but green all around.
T got nice and dirty in the sparse grass and once when I was on the phone with a friend I had to rush off because I saw him standing against a cement block wiping aggrivatedly at his face. When I looked closer I saw he was swarming with ants from head to toe. It took me a good 5 minutes to wipe them all off. Good thing they weren’t the biting ones!
We thanked God for our fun time to play and get out and then we headed to CCD (Cafe Coffee Day). It was now way past afternoon nap time but things were going quite well as we sipped our chocolate drinks and Malachi mingled with most of the people in the shop. I heard him telling a joke to a young girl that had the same exact Goa shirt on as him.
“Nice shirt!” he said
I am assuming she responded accordingly, cause I only saw him say,
no answer, “your supposed to say elephant who?”
“elephant on your shirt and mine.”
We finished up our drinks and T threw a big fit over being done with his brownie. What is it about Chocolate that makes people angry when they run out? I distracted him with a straw and he toddled about the shop.
We hopped on our rickshaw and I enjoyed the evening breeze rustling through the euciliptus trees that hung over the street.
On our ride home I noticed all the roadside piles of goatskins and wondered what they do with them now. I started snapping pictures of things with my phone as we rode along.
Vange says ” I don’t want to eat live goats that are killed mom.” I don’t blame her. It was a little disturbing. I wondered if it was bad to be thankful that Jesus paid the sacrifice for me so now I don’t have to mess with sacrificing for myself. Quite messy.
We roll into our neighborhood and the kids remind me that we need diapers and milk. As we pick up the diapers, forgetting the milk we greet the shopkeeper and head back to our place.
We take the shortcut trough the alley and I pass the woman I have smiled to many times, and wonder when I will be invited in or just invite myself. I contemplated asking her for a picture but quickly remembered my invasive afternoon.
Once in our home I remind the kids of the same thing I usually do, shoes in the shoe rack and wash hands. I head to the kitchen with T giving him a much needed bath in the sink. After many attempts to escape I get him washed nice and good despite the floaters he leaves behind in the water.
I wrestle a diaper on him and rub him down with lotion to which he giggles uncontrollably. And I get him to lay still in his bed with a bottle of milk so I can clip his nails. Meanwhile I give instructions to all three to get their reading books and use the restroom before I put T down for a late nap and we all have rest time.
As I walk into my bedroom it’s just sunset, my fav time of day to be in my room, for the way the sun shines through the windows. I am thankful that I get to enjoy it alone.
My day was mixed with good and bad experiences but I give myself a pat on the back to just get us all out and back, and clean.
T ends rest time an hour later with his cries in the dark. I switch on the light and find Vange asleep, eyes wide open. I wave my hand in front of her and she doesn’t budge. Malachi has fallen asleep in the living room while reading. I give T to Arwyn who was reading in the family room to watch while I finish up some typing. I jump up once to soothe the crying from a good bump on T’s noggin from flipping over a chair.Then I head to the kitchen to start dinner.
I am thankful to just have yummy tacos to reheat from last night. I grab T on the way to come play with the little kitchen while I cook. He starts out good but is soon crying on the floor desperate for some food.
I wake Malachi and set the table. Arwyn is using her 30 minutes of earned computer time to email her grandma. Vange has woken and started playing in the family room with her “bucket of beans.”
I ring the dinner bell and we all chat about our highs and lows of the day while eating scrumptious tacos.
Malachi: my low was leaving the trees at the park, my high was going to CCD
Arwyn: My high was going to CCD, and my low was everyone staring at us.
Vange: my low was everyone staring too. My high was playing at the other park and having privacy.
I say my low was leaving the trees as well, and my high was talking to daddy on the phone.
We all agree T’s high was getting outside, cause he laughed and clapped when we headed out on our adventure.
T refuses food, asking for a second bottle. His new tooth coming through has made him a picky eater lately and he would much rather drink those all day long, despite his constipation that I have tried combating for a week now.
Arwyn clears the table and wipes it down, I send the other two to brush teeth and use the bathroom. Then we all straighten up the house a bit before we settle down to read Uncle Wiggley’s storybook. I pick our nightly song tonight and kiss them all goodnight.
Vange comes out 3 times while I am hanging clothes on the line and sweeping up.
I settle in to my room for the evening of quiet and Malachi comes in to tell me he has stuffy nose.
Whew! A packed but rich day and I look forward to our sabbath tomorrow. Pancakes, games, and a new movie. And J comes back to me, the best part.