Tuesday, March 26, 2019

The Lazy Me...........

I am a reluctant shopper. I really am. I have a few indulgent friends who help me shop for clothes and accessories. Very often I don’t even go myself and let them pick up stuff on my behalf. For veggies and grocery I drive my husband to the market, park the car under a tree and read a book or the day’s newspaper. He happily does the marketing. The reason for this is my husband’s choice of time. He likes to shop around 12 noon which is the hottest time of the day. He says that fresh vegetables arrive at the market around that time.  To my credit I must say that I am easy to please and have no complaints against his choice. When we are done and return home we have to deal with school buses and vans and auto rickshaws, loaded with children, as well as the company employees speeding up to arrive at their workplace for the afternoon shift. So I truly find even the minimum shopping (of the absolutely essential kind) cumbersome. As far as grocery and vegetable/fruits are concerned husband would veto the idea of door delivery. I order books and test strips for my glucometer from Amazon. Haven’t tried clothes and accessories yet.

So when my son and daughter in law launched chicshop.in in Mumbai I couldn’t help wishing that such a service was available in Jamshedpur. It combines online shopping with a personal interaction with stylists over Whatsapp who send images of the item and give one an idea not only about the material but also other choices for their requirement available in the same or nearby store. A local delivery service delivers stuff picked up before 12:30 PM on the same day while orders after noon are dispatched on the following day. It is a boon for mothers of  toddlers and school going children, working women as well as men who would appreciate a little help while planning a surprise gift for their women. Grandmothers like me nursing an arthritic knee can use the service to lavish gifts on their grandchildren, nieces, daughters and daughters in law.  

So while I wish my son all the best in his endeavor I also secretly hope that it grows and reaches out to small towns like ours.

Friday, March 22, 2019

The Spice of Life - 2

The Spice of Life -2

I have decided to write again. Hibernation over and back to action. I begin as usual with my favorite topic “The Spice of My Life”. Yes, you’ve guessed it. MDH and his regular habit of driving me nuts.

My husband is plumber, mason and electrician all rolled in one. No, I have no problem with it at all. I gave up any effort to get someone to fix leaky taps and broken tiles long back. He will not hear of it and insist on doing it himself. I am secretly in awe of his interest in learning new skills but we won’t tell him that right now. He will get all puffed up and try his hand on yet another new venture.

“So what’s your problem”? you may ask. None at all if he worked on his own. He needs an assistant and who else would be willing to dance to his tune except me.

Let me explain…….

The condenser of the ceiling fan had to be replaced. Till about a fortnight ago we didn’t need the fan. Now that summer’s here fans need to run at full speed. He got the condenser from the store and set about replacing it. The center table was brought in and positioned below the fan. A stool was placed on top of it and MDH climbed over it. I was concerned about his safety and to be able to hold the stool I asked him to give me a minute to finish my cooking……………

"It won’t take more than a minute" was his response.

I switched off the gas and dutifully held the stool while constantly craning my neck to see what he was up to.

“Get me the screw driver”…

“Which one? You have screw drivers of four sizes”.

“The red one”.

“The long red or small red”?

“You’ve seen me at work all your life and yet you ask”….

A part of me – the wicked me - felt like leaving him right there to get back to my cooking. But his safety was also a concern.

“Will you be safe while I fetch your tool box”?

I decided to get the entire thing to be able to hand him a screw driver or spanner of his choice.

That done he next asks for a torch. I truly get bugged when at the age of 76 he stands with his head a foot above the fan asking for one or the other thing. I am in perpetual fear of his getting hurt.

 A torch, a blade, a screw driver or an adhesive tape – the list is long.

We then start quarreling like school children.

I am asked to flash the torch at an angle suitable to him.

“You are blocking the light” I say.

He has to get down and re-position the center table/stool combo. He climbs up and I flash the torch again.

After 4 to 6 trials he gets frustrated and takes the torch from me and holding the screw driver between his teeth flashes the torch himself. Once the location of the old condenser is identified he returns the torch to me and with proper instruction I manage to get the angle right.

Handing him the blade and taking it back…

The long screw driver once and the smaller one later…..

Constantly looking up is painful in the actual and figurative sense…..

Worrying about his safety has my blood pressure soaring…….

Finally after half an hour the task that was meant to be accomplished in a minute gets over and he climbs down beaming with satisfaction. I wonder if it wasn't easier to get an electrician to do it.

To top it he asks if lunch was ready and when I ask to be given a couple of minutes...….

His response is-

“What were you doing all this while”?

“Dancing to your music” is my reply.

And I hope you agree that I was doing just that.