Monday, April 22, 2013

Golden Afternoon

This morning went to Malleswaram (yes, again...are you seeing theme here?) and finished up our "leaving India" shopping. I suppose that's a bit bittersweet, but since I was having stress dreams about not having done everything I needed to do, I'm feeling pretty pleased. Really pleased, in fact.

One of the last bits of shopping was a little tricky. I wanted to buy fabric for a suit set for my grandmother, which sounds not tricky on the surface. But my gram prefers light colors, which aren't overly represented in the Indian palette, and we're leaving in 8 days, which isn't a lot of time to get the set made. But I triumphed! With great triumph!

First, I found cloth for the kurta that I think is in the right color family, and will look smashing on her. Then I found fabric for the salwars that matched very well (it even got the fabric store worker's approval!). Finally, I took them to the tailor, explained they were for my gram, that she wasn't the same size as me, and told her what sizing and styling I wanted. And she said she could have them done in time for me! Man, I love this tailor. She's rockin'.

Then we ran into Tiju, and had a lovely lunch with him. Once home the kids did math work, reading, and Zion learned about Hanuman (his favorite Hindu g-d) and no one cried or even complained about schoolwork. Admittedly Liel ended up shrieking at Robert over the authentication for the proxy server (I will not miss the proxy server at all!), but still. It was mostly win.

Now it's late afternoon. We have the curtains in our apartment drawn against the hot south Indian summer sun. Zion is playing chess against the computer while Liel watches, narrates, and sometimes makes suggestions. I have dinner cooking in ye olde rice cooker, and we're listening to Huey Lewis and the News. I feel like this is one of those perfect, golden moments where everything is entering my memory all crystallized and sharp and beautiful.

(A word about Huey Lewis and the News. I've loved them since way back in the day...the day being the early/mid 80s. My parents owned all their records, and my brother and I loved listening to them and "dancing". That's in quotes because it mostly involved jumping off the furniture and running around like crazy people. Anyway, as the 80s, and then the 90s wore on there was very little Huey in my life, aside from the nights I'd come home to find my parents dancing to him in the living room, usually to "Buzz Buzz Buzz". Once, when we were travelling in Costa Rica, it came out that my mom thought the lyrics to this song included the line, "the sound of your little boy Stanley", which had the rest of us literally crying with laughter.

Then, when I was doing my PhD, Robert and I spent a fair bit of time wine tasting in Santa Ynez, and made some great friends at our favorite winery. I even worked in the tasting room for a short while. And that winery (Buttonwood) had all vinyl Sundays, instituted by our friend Graham. And all of the all vinyl Sundays included a lot of Huey Lewis. It was really idyllic-- picture the tasting room of a winery in the beautiful Santa Ynez valley. Sun streams through the windows, there's a lovely breeze and a view of vines, orchards, and mountains. There are happy people tasting wine, happy people pouring wine, and Huey Lewis and the News blasting at a perfect volume. It was pure delight, believe me. As if all that weren't enough, my friend Pete and I have spent many a happy evening drinking wine and watching Huey Lewis videos. All of which is to say, I associate Huey Lewis with some of the best things in my life: my childhood, my brother, my parents, Robert, wine tasting, my family and good friends. And now I can add India to that list!)


Jo said...

I have tears in my eyes from laughing! Yep, I remember Costa Rica when my embarrassment of the misunderstanding came surfaced! (Ya know, it STILL sounds like "your little boy Stanley" to me!)The video your included was fantastic!
The rest of your post was very heart warming to me. Your writing about it, left me feeling that I know just what you are talking about. Precious feelings, and your clear awareness of it.
Congratulations on your accomplishments both with your actions concerning Gram, and your writing.

Kristofer Young said...

Yet another rich narrative! Bundled together in the final line!

Buzz Buzz goes the bumble bee!