With the exception of the apple pie I just made and the Brownie Sizzlers I am going to have later tonight, I may be becoming one of those people I dislike even more than the people who yell “Woooooo” really loudly all the time. There is a chance that if I remain unchecked, I may become a “crunchie”, “granola”, “raw food”, “can’t eat gluten”, “Namaste” type of girl. Just the thought of it gives me hives. Even up until last week, I would have bet two pounds of caramel popcorn that it wouldn’t happen, that it couldn’t happen to me, and now, it’s all looking a bit uncertain. Read the rest of this entry »
It didn’t even begin like any other day; it was slow and hectic right at the start. The 4-year-old wanted different clothes, the 11-year-old didn’t want to wake up, and the 13-year-old was just not moving.
There were three stomachs in varying stages of unrest. Taj was just getting his appetite back and kept trying to eat things he shouldn’t and the others were nauseous and didn’t want to eat at all.
Being the Mom, it’s my job to make sure that everyone gets off to school having eaten what they should. Already, 09-09-09 is getting the best of me.
It was Day 11 of the yearly Ganesh Festival, the culmination of celebrations and worship that had rocked the town for days. Lord Ganesh is the Indian god who is half boy and half elephant. He is thought to remove obstacles and is very popular in Hinduism.
There was a hush over the city as teams of women, men, and children, with idols of Ganesh perched on shoulders, in rickshaws and trucks, headed across the road to Lake Powai for the Immersion.
My friends and family think I’m very brave to be here, to move to India, a place I’ve never been, a country I don’t know, on the other side of the world. What they don’t know is how brave it would have been not to be here at all.
My Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis came during the Writers’ Strike and just before Christmas. I was sad all of the time. Prone to tears for no discernible reason and fragile beyond belief. I didn’t know whether I was depressed as a result of the MS or just heart-broken by the sad news.
In an instant, I became too big for my life in LA and too small for it at the same time. I was clumsy and invisible, suffocating and alone, plagued by irony and pain… at a loss for everything. I felt like “scab” writers, desperate for ratings, were writing the story of my life. How long could it be before I got amnesia or met an unknown evil twin?
“If he asked me, I’d have to sleep with Prince,” I explained plainly to my husband, Robin in our fifteenth month of marriage. I wasn’t looking for a reaction. I was just stating the obvious. I was new to marriage then and didn’t fully appreciate not saying everything I thought. Read the rest of this entry »
Dear Family and Friends, 30 August 2009
So far, India is warm, colorful, and beautiful. There is chaos and confusion, wealth, and poverty all intermingled in a brew of vibrant garments and backfiring vehicles.
It’s now more than two weeks and we are settled in some ways and in other ways, the shock has worn off and we are now stunned.
When we first got to India and my kids were obsessed about one stray dog after the next, I gave them a little lecture. “For every dog you see, there are hundreds of people, many are children, who aren’t in school, who don’t have toys and clothes or beds to sleep in. Don’t forget about them, don’t overlook them.”
My then 14-year-old son Addae said, “Mom, it’s just that we feel like we know what to do when we see a dog with a hurt paw or that’s hungry. It’s not that we don’t care about the people, it’s just that we don’t know what to do.”
Many of our friends and family don’t know what to make of our move to India. For 20 years, we lived in the same neighborhood in Los Angeles. We raised our three sons in that house and even birthed the last one on the bathroom floor (but that’s another story.) Our friends and family are trying to figure out why now, why Mumbai, and in many ways, it is still a mystery to us.
The short answer is that Robin, my husband of 23 years, who describes himself as devilishly attractive, stunningly handsome, smart, sexy, charming, witty, and modest, works for a company that was purchased by Reliance, a huge Indian conglomerate that owns a start-up in Mumbai. The company does the same digital restoration Robin did in Southern California, on a mammoth scale. In an attempt to ensure job security, he put his name in the hat to move to India and head the operation here. He liked the idea of helping build a company from the ground up and we were both excited about the prospect of traveling to a new country with our family.
I haven’t ruled out the possibility that we are collectively suffering a mid-life crisis and we decided to move away from everything we built in the last two decades in a desperate attempt to revive a boring and static life. It is also very possible that we have lost our minds.
This, my first posting, is dedicated to the little Indian woman who shaved me clean, and to me, the woman who still wants to believe that getting your “bikini” done is not the same thing as removing all of your pubic hair. But, it’s kind of like the story about the man who is hit while he’s driving his car through a stale, green light. He argues that he has the right of way. He is right, but his car is totaled. I am arguably right, but I’m still totaled.
Here are the facts. My name is Nandi. I have three sons and an English husband named Robin. I am a famous Hollywood Filmmaker. I live in Mumbai, India. I am here to discover and explore my spirituality and to share in this exotic, global village with my family.