Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Day 49: Delhi bound!

Today was a hectic travel day, but with such a big payoff. The nanny made it up to us in the morning by sticking around when she could see how frantic final packing was. It took longer than I'd planned and I was sweating like a pig! She even took the wooden slope risers I'd borrowed from the NICU to prop up the mattresses they sleep on and took them back to save us the trip. Indrajeet showed up on time and I took some last pics of Anand, glad I am NEVER coming back.

As for the long 1 1/2 hour ride to Ahmedabad on the expressway, the babies LOVED it. I knew that they would, but didn't know just how much. Vivek slept so peacefully I wanted to check for breathing but then remembered we have apnea alarms. Even when the road got pretty bumpy including driving over cabbages from a giant truck flipped over that had been full of them they seemed soothed by the bumps. I was quite stressed throughout the airport portions because I don't like them being around that many people who could pass on germs and I was so worried something could go wrong. I was snippy with Mom and felt bad about it. It's a lot of pressure and scary for a new Mom.

Dadima and Vivek on the plane in the row behind me

Tara checking out the aisle seat

Miss Tara prefers the window seat
 The counter lady took her time but finally got us all 4 boarding passes. She got us two rows to ourselves so Mom and I would have plenty of room, and the plane being mostly empty was a big bonus. No extra charge on Indigo for checking 3 bags, and we had the carriers and the baby beds as carry on's as well as Mom's purse and my diaper bag. They ran the carriers through the X-ray machine so Mom and I each carried a baby through the body check portion. Then you get the carriers back but during takeoff and landing they stow them in overhead bins and you have to hold the babies. They loved the plane ride, though Vivek cried a bit. I was so worried about takeoff and landing, but the pacifiers did their magic and the babies' ears popped. Tara would pause briefly and then suck rapidly so it seemed she figured out the formula to ease any ear discomfort. Not a peep or cry out of them due to ear popping, so that eases my mind for the international flight home.

We did two feeds in the air, and fortunately I'd packed many extra bottles ready to mix so that we would be good until about 8pm and could hang out at the Narang household for a while if we wanted to. Once we landed, I changed them on the seat while everyone exited the plane and we were ready to go. Unfortunately we had to board a crowded bus last for the ride to the terminal. At the last minute folks volunteered to give up their seats, but the bus had already started moving and I quickly decided a low center of gravity was the best solution. People stared at me but I didn't care. I planted both babies on the open floor of the bus, got down on my knees in a wide stance, then braced both carriers with my arms. I leaned into every turn and the bus ride was a cinch.

The Delhi airport had a baggage porter who was a huge help to us and I carried both carriers. After a brief wait I spotted Mitlesh Auntie and Mon Uncle. It was a happy greeting for sure, and we all piled into the car for the drive home. They once again LOVED the car ride. I caught Mom comparing my babies to monkeys again when talking to Mitlesh Auntie and we all had a good laugh.

Hanging out on Mon Uncle's bed

Being back in Delhi and walking into the Narang family home was the next best thing to being back in the USA. Tons of wonderful family so happy to see us and oohing and aahing over how cute the babies are. A beautiful meal on the table of the best food I've had since I've been here...with bartha of course. Ironically the cook and helpers names are Tara and Savita! I had not seen Minnie or her son Ujjawal or daughter Shambavi in 9 years, and he is in college now! The only issue was that Madhav had a fever and cough and was sick, so that caused a lot of anxiety for me but this was a temporary and unvoidable stop. He is also hard to control, but everyone teamed up to keep him away from the babies and no one who had touched Madhav (read everyone) touched the babies except cousin Minnie who washed her hands before she helped feed Vivek while I was at our house unpacking and setting things up. I walked back to the house and it only took me 5 minutes! Mitlesh Auntie and Mon Uncle plan to drop by and visit all the time so the babies will be entertaining company and building their fan club.

Back out the Narang house while I left to set up house, the babies hung out. Despite the lovely living area the babies hung out in the same room everyone else does...Mitlesh Auntie and Mon Uncle's bedroom. I placed them side by side on the bed on a sloped pillow, and I'm pretty sure they were looking at each other for a moment or two.

Our new pad is INCREDIBLE!!! I can't believe we are staying somewhere this nice the next few weeks. It is adorable and the family went far overboard in getting it set up for us. They brough Manu's refridgerator from work and that and the pantries they stocked completely! I suspect they may have bought the microwave and brought in a TV. They had cases of bottled water in the kitchen along with bowls and baskets of fruits and vegetables, fresh sheets on the beds, and the place had been cleaned from top to bottom. Here is a video of the lovely home we are staying at, which happens to be across the street from a lovely park.

The evening concluded with a lovely dinner followed by birthday cake for Mon Uncle and everyone gathered around singing. I asked if smashing cake on Mon Uncles face is an Indian custom or tradition. The answer was no, so I guess everyone is just mean. Mom started it.

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