Sunday, December 9, 2012

Ups and Downs

First, the ups! Yesterday our friend's cousin came over, along with his girlfriend, and helped us run more errands. We got a futon mattress for Zion, bought SIM cards for our phones (they should be functional in 3 days), and got another cooking pot and groceries. I can't remember if I mentioned it, but we got the induction cooker that was supposed to be here 2 days ago, but it only came with one pot. Of course it only has room for one pot, so in some ways that makes sense, but, um, entirely one pot cooking is pretty limited! Oh we went to an ATM for the first time too (after running out of cash buying groceries- classy!).

The ATM should probably be in the downs though, as it gave us Rs500 less than we asked for, but claimed it had given us the full amount. Sigh.

The first big down is the induction cooker, though. Holy crap, that thing SUCKS. I've asked around and I think it is probably a combination of user error and the fact that induction cookers suck, and mostly the later. I'm sure I could learn to use it better, but the thing seems to have two settings- scorching hot (literally burning food in seconds) and overheated, which causes it to shut down. It took me well well over 90 minutes last night to cook rice and lentils for dinner, and they were partly burnt and undercooked. They were underseasoned as well, since I only had garlic and salt for them. I would have cried if I weren't so exhausted from fighting with the damn thing. The kids were quite gracious about it-- they've really been amazing while we've been settling in. They've barely complained at all! Zion said he misses having a yard to run around in, and they're both none too fond of the noise and trash on the streets, but otherwise they've been nothing but cheerful, even when sleeping on couch cushions, eating undercooked/burnt food, and getting approximately 1/8th the amount of Hanukkah gifts they usually get.

The other big down is illness. Robert has had an awful cold for a couple of days, and the kids seem to be coming down with it now too. Also, Liel woke up with a red splotch on her cheek this morning, and what the hell is that!?

I'm feeling somewhat anxious about today. Robert is at the FRRO (please, please let that go well!), both kids are unwell, and I have food but no way to cook it. Oh and I have a pile of laundry waiting for me to hand wash it in a bucket! The food worries me most, though. I need to feed them, but hauling them around the neighborhood (esp since we haven't found really great, healthy food in the immediate area) is not looking likely.

I'm told that induction cookers are only used as backups in India, in case you run out of propane, and that I should demand a gas cooker. I don't know that I have it in me to even try. My attempts to get a mattress were a total fail, and it took a week to get the damn induction cooker, so I'm afraid that even if it were possible to get a gas cooker it would take me a week or more, which would mean another week without being able to cook. I'm thinking about ordering a rice cooker and an electric frying pan and trying to make do with those. Of course that comes with the annoyance of buying appliances I'll only use for a few months, but the bigger problem is still the timing. Nothing I could order would be here sooner than 3-4 days, but I'm not even sure I can order yet since all Indian websites I've tried to order from thus far require a mobile number so they can text you order updates. Until yesterday I didn't have a mobile number, but now the one I have doesn't work and I'm not sure my order can be processed with a non-working number. If that's the case I'm looking at a week before I can get cooking no matter what. At least a week.

Alright, well, that's the news today :)


Pusstat said...

Sending {{{ hugs }}}.
To all of you.

That's all.

laura kozaitis said...

i say definitely get a propane cooker/stove. So sorry about the induction thing and the illnesses. It takes time to get settled, farm out what you can to friends and neighbors to help you procure what you need. Even what you buy you will be glad to regift to helpful folks met during your stay. Sending love,