Time.

There comes a time one is pretty happy with what one has and don’t want to change the status qou. I think I reached that point.

Few weeks ago, a friend came over to take me to watch Mrs. Brown’s boys movie. I love Mrs. Brown’s boys. I even say that’s nice when people bug me

My children absolutely hate Mrs Brown’s boys and so my friend decided to treat me to something I really love.

He also made the dessert for dinner. I have never had anyone cook for me and it was really special (even though he only spent 5 minutes to make the dessert). This is the recipe

Quick strawberry cobbler. Place a layer of frozen strawberry in a  pie dish. Add a bit of sugar on top. Make a batter from half a box of any ready made cake mix and pour that on top of the strawberry. Bake at 180 for 30 minutes.

A guy who cooks and takes you out for a movie and somehow I am happy with my current status. ( Single)

Grr

I think I confused a lot of people with the past two blog posts, 8:45 and Hmm

Let me clarify, on Wed, before Yaya left for school  she let me know that she and her friends are going to city to learn dancing and her brother picked her up from the bus stop. On Thur, she assumed I would know that she is still going for dance lessons ( the lessons are on wed and thur, but I had no idea) in the city and didn’t tell me and had to walk back home alone. On Friday, she called me on the dot of 5 to tell me that she will be home in an hour.

Yesterday, I received a call from Yaya’s Spanish.teacher.  First of all I am terrified, every time I receive a call from the school. There is never a good reason for the school to call a parent and I am very weary of phone calls from the school.  I imagined all sorts of terrible things that could have happened to my children in that split second after I said “hello”

“Is everything Ok?” I asked

“Of course” He replied. ”  I just wanted to know if you are enrolling your youngest child for Spanish lessons next year, because the admissions are closing soon”

I don’t know why I am like this. I applied for Yaya’s admission to high school in April for the next year. So was  for my son. I completely forgot about my youngest child and the school had to call me to remind me. There is no reasonable excuse for my behaviour.

I had to make a trip to the school yesterday evening to sort out Baby’s admission and the Principal tells me ( probably she saw how upset I was and felt the need to placate me) that usually there are parents who come a week before school starts to apply for their youngest child’s admission.

I am still very annoyed and angry with myself.

Hmm

Teaching Yaya, life’s lessons.

Last Thursday, she went to school in the morning and didn’t tell me she will be late that evening. She didn’t come home till 8.45 pm and not once called me to let me know of her whereabouts.

Any sensible mother would call her daughter to find out what is going on. I didn’t, rather I couldn’t. This is one of those things from the past that I can’t escape from. My mother and my oldest sister tried their level best to control every move I made by checking on everything I do. ( Including coming to my hostel room while I am at the hospital doing the rounds, going through my personal belongings, taking negatives that I had in my cupboard without corresponding photos in the album, so they could take it to the nearest photo studio to make copies to ensure that I wasn’t up to any hanky panky, how stupid they ought to have been to even think that I would leave something incriminating in my room, so I could get in to trouble.)

I used to feel really annoyed with them mostly because I was an adult, old enough to vote in India at that time and the more they tried to control me, the more ways I found to break free.

So much as I wanted to call Yaya and find out where the hell is she, I didn’t because I didn’t want her to feel like I did.

At 8:30 pm, I heard my son’s phone ringing and I told my son not to answer and explained to him that. If she is old enough to be on her own until 8;30 pm, then she is old enough to walk in the dark from the bus stop to my house.

I must say, I was terrified of the decision I made by not sending my son to fetch his sister from the bus stop. She needs to walk through a deserted park with no lights and all sorts of wild animals ( esp snakes) and I wasn’t sure how I would have lived the rest of my life if anything happened to my precious child. However, I needed her to understand that if she is going to make certain decisions in her life, then she needs to see it through to the end and not expect her family to jump to her whims and fancy.

She was gasping for air by the time she reached home. Obviously she ran all the way from the bus stop.

“Why didn’t you pick up the phone?” She screamed at her brother.

“Why didn’t you let us know you will be late?” I asked her.

“You could have called” She told me

“So could you” I replied.

She went to her room and slammed the door.

I let her cool down a bit for I knew how terrified she would have been walking in the darkness to my home. I made her a cup of hot chocolate and went to her room and told her ” you know I come from a screwed up family. I do try my level best not to be anything like my mother ever was, but there are certain things that I can’t change. I will never call you to find out where you are not because I don’t care, but because when I was growing up, I felt my family’s interest in my personal life too restrictive. I will never stop you from going out, but you need to tell me where you are going and if you are going to be late, you need to call me and let me know” I then showed her my finger nails. I hadn’t bitten them for a long time and waiting for her phone call, I bit all my nails.

She said ” sorry mom”

The next day, there was a phone call from her on the dot of 5 pm to tell me that she was at the Vietnamese restaurant and will be home in an hour.

 

5

It is 5 years since I came to Australia. The longest I ever stayed continuously in any country since leaving India in 1994. And that makes me feel miserable.

I really want to go and live in South America and learn Spanish. I was thinking of Venezuela, but then I read about Guyana, Anglo Caribbean country with 43% Indo Guyanese population, Guyana sounds a lot more interesting than Venezuela. I am still figuring out a way to get there and I know sooner or later I will blog from there :)

One thing for sure though is that I prefer to call Australia home. 5 years ago, I didn’t think I would last a year here. So far, I have survived a bush fire, flood  and drought. I have met my share of poisonous snakes, spiders and box jelly fish. However, I also wake up every morning listening to bird songs ( be it summer or winter).the sky is mostly blue most of the time and light pollution is a lot lesser than N. America and I can see a lot more stars at night.

As I grow older, living in a warm climate is a lot more appealing to my weary, arthritis prone bones. I can go for a walk at any time of the day/year without having to worry about inclement weather. Though I still hate the reverse order of season and much prefer to have Christmas in winter, my bones don’t complain when I don’t have to shovel the snow. Besides, I have long vacation during Christmas time and can travel.

 

8:45

Yaya got back home at 8:45 pm last night. Before she left for school in the morning, she informed me “mom, few of my classmates and I are going for a Latin Dance lesson near city after school and I will be late”

As you can see, she didn’t ask me for my permission to go for the dance lesson. I thought about it as this whole independence thing is an unchartered territory for me. I figured If at 16, the govt allows her to apply for drivers license without  parental consent, then perhaps I have to accept that she can make her own decisions. But I was still a bit annoyed, even though there was no reason for me to be annoyed other than the fact that I am fast becoming a Queen without a crown and sceptre.

A part of me knows that Latin dance is so much fun and if you know how to dance, then you will have a great time when you go clubbing. ( You don’t have to sit like a wet blanket when everyone else is dancing) Yaya is at an age where she should learn to dance and I think she is doing the right thing. But she is also my little baby. ( I know she is 16, but still) I know I can’t stop her from going out and I know I really shouldn’t stop her from living her life..But I am so scared of the unknown.

At about 7:30 pm, she called me to say that she is at the bus station and will catch the next bus and is expected home in about an hour. Until now, she never took public transport after 5 pm, because she felt the passengers who take the bus after work are creepy.

At 8;35, I heard my son’s phone ringing and he came and told me ” Mom, I am going to the bus stop to wait for Yaya” He took the torch and went to get his sister.

I guess in another few years, my son will also be coming home late and then it will be baby’s turn..and then they all leave home..

Little things.

As usual, I took my youngest for her basketball game last Saturday. The game usually gets over by 12.30 pm and I have to come back home and cook lunch. Weekends are there, so you can recover and recharge your batteries and in my case, that isn’t possible, for I have so much to do every weekend. ( Laundry, grocery shopping gardening, the list is endless).

Due to some unknown reason, there was a massive traffic jam on the way back home and I got home after 2 pm feeling annoyed, hungry and angry.

I kind of expected that Yaya would make something for lunch. She did. She made a sandwich for herself. My son too was home after his work and he also didn’t cook anything and I was annoyed with him as well, even though I knew he just came back home.

I went to my room to change and noticed on my bed a Calvin and Hobbes 20th anniversary book with a little note from my son that said “mom, I know you already own the same book, but yours is  badly dog-eared and I found this at the thrift shop and bought it for you”

Mothering is a really tiring job, but the fringe benefits are spectacular.

Holiday

Tomorrow ( my wed) is a public holiday here. I hate midweek public holiday. however I really need a break.. It is still cold most mornings and I haven’t been to the beach for weeks. So I think I will drive down to Byron bay.

Thu and Fri back to Uni

So ” I’ll be back” on Monday

Impressed

Yaya got her L license yesterday.

Night before, she filled the form ( that reminds me, I didn’t have to sign anything, I thought govt would want the parents’ consent), collected all the documents she needed to take, asked me for the money ( both for sitting the test and for the license).

After school, she took the train to the nearest place where she could sit for the test.

She passed the test, paid the fees, got the license and then called me to ask if I could pick her up.

I am impressed by the fact that she could do all these on her own and didn’t require my assistance. I think of all the things I am to do as a parent, teaching children to be self reliant is the most important thing to do. I was temped to sit with her and go through the sample questions for the test. I wanted to check and see if she took all the documents that are needed. I was worried that if she loses her passport, she might not be able to go to Mexico ( too little time to get a new passport) and wanted to tell her to be extra careful with her passport. I was worried about letting her carry so much money to school. ( 22 $ for the test and 150$ for the license) In the end, I took a deep breath and told myself, she is 16 and not a baby anymore. She will be fine.

And now the fun starts. When I reached my street , she asked me ” mom, can I drive rest of the way”. Much as I wanted to tell her, No, not in my car, I couldn’t break her spirit few hours after she got her license. So I let her. The road is absolutely straight, yet she missed hitting my neighbours letter box by a fraction of a cm.  She needs 100 hours on the road and I have to sit with her when she drives to get that 100 hours. She wants to drive to school every morning with me sitting beside her. I honestly don’t think my heart and my car will survive.