After being on the road for well over three weeks, I arrived back home from US, exhausted and a bit depressed. After all, I won’t see my oldest daughter for another couple of months. By the time I arrived home, it was around 11 AM, I was tired and hungry.
Years ago, I wrote about the time Amma left us alone in the Bangalore house and went to Kerala and the day before she was due, I cleaned the whole house. I even carried her mattress to the balcony to rejuvenate the cotton stuffing in the sun ! Amma got home around 6.30 AM and the first thing she said as soon as she got inside the house and switched on the light was “Why is the light switch sticky?”
I didn’t want to be like Amma, but at the same time I kind of wanted my house to be clean and expected my kids to keep it clean.
Leaving a 16 year old, a 14 year old and a 14 month old dog alone at home without adult supervision was a risky business. I expected the worst.
My house looked exactly as I left it. Except for two pot plants in the living room which the dog ate..or attempted to eat.. I guess she thought she is helping me by checking the roots.
But more than the state of the house, what really made me happy was what was on the dining table.
There was Avial, Dhal, rice and pappadam for me and taco mince for them. And there was even a pineapple cake for desert. My kids cooked it and even though the cake didn’t look like a pineapple, it tasted just as good.
I remember reading somewhere about an Indian American woman’s comment about her son. She said very proudly “My son doesn’t even know how to toast a slice of bread” and when I read it, I thought what an ignorant woman she is! I promised myself that I will teach my kids how to cook, because it is an essential skill they need to develop to survive .
It is not that I am not worried about the kids being careless and leaving the stove unattended or getting injured/burned etc. I am terrified of all that can go wrong. But I also know that I must have faith in them and believe in them.
Until end of Oct, my son will be alone at home with Kirra. Youngest is in Spain on student exchange. And then the two of them will be alone till I get home end of Nov.
The only difficult part for the kids would be that they have to take the bus to the shops to buy grocery. I did tell them to buy online. But they don’t want to pay for the delivery charges..they think it is a waste of money.(According to my son, he can buy two pizzas for the same money)
So here I am, in Manila. I miss my kids..