Thursday, 15 October 2009

Maya is back in Bangalore!

Andy and I weren’t hugely looking forward to the flight back to India (to be fair, does anybody look forward to a long haul flights with a one and three year old? If there’s anyone out there, please please let me know how and why.) Both Maya and Lily surpassed our expectations though and, unlike last time, got some shut eye. Maya didn’t, however, manage to stay clean. The poor girl had been feeling unwell for several days but it wasn’t until our departure date that she really felt poorly. Once on the plane, we thought it would be wise to keep a sick bag near her. Just in case. Approximately five minutes after take off, Maya croaked ‘Bag! Bag!’ And whilst the ridiculous parents flailed about wildly trying to locate the ‘sensibly positioned’ bag, Maya did all she could to keep it in…but we ran out of time and she vomited everywhere. Now, as we’re such well-prepared, forward-thinking parents, obviously we’d brought along plenty of spare clothes for the journey….yeah right. Under the seat went the sicked-on top and back on went the thick winter hoody she was wearing earlier at the airport, the perfect garment for arrival in hot, sticky India. Lesson learnt: If your kid tells you they’re going to be sick on a plane, they probably mean it. Oh, and it’s a good idea not to lose the sick bag at this moment in time.

Anyway, we’re all back in Bangalore in one piece and I must say that as soon as we’d entered our apartment, Maya seemed genuinely, joyously happy to be here. She ran around in an upbeat craze being re-united with her doll Sophie, her yellow scooter and her pink plastic cup. Ah, the simple pleasures. The first afternoon back, I thought I’d take the girls to the park over the road. For those of you who’ve been following this blog since the beginning, you may remember our first ever experiences in this same park back in March. Either way, here’s a quick re-cap.

This time round, Maya was far more adept at side-stepping the copious amounts of cow-poop festooned all around the walkways but what she was less prepared for was the re-introduction of how much attention she can attract. No sooner were we at ‘the rock’ (the centre piece of the park where all the children congregate) than she was overwhelmed by numerous children swooping on her, demanding to her name and ‘which standard she was studying in’. I also felt a little overwhelmed on her behalf and tried, in the politest way possible, to get them to back off a little. It seems I didn’t need to as Maya, studiously ignoring her question-battering, had marched through the crowd and climbed as quickly as she could to the top of the rock for some peace and solitude. Can’t say I blame her. She really has got so much better at dealing with all this attention, but it’s never going to be easy for an independent little three year old.

On the second day, I thought it was unlikely she’d be awake enough for school but, on the contrary, she couldn’t wait to go. Andy reported that she was fought over by a few of the little girls in the playground and her teacher told me that she participated well in every activity throughout the morning except for the running which she point-blank refused to have a go at. I raised an eyebrow and wondered whether it was worth telling her that Maya’s mother went on strike at every single running event throughout primary school and that she may take after me….whilst deliberating this, her teacher said that they’d be running again tomorrow and she was sure Maya would want to join in. Hmm…maybe. But I fear she hasn’t been introduced to Maya’s truly stubborn side yet!

Anyway, I’m pleased to report that Maya seems very pleased to be back here in India. Tearing through the streets in a rickshaw today she kept gleefully yelling ‘Look at that!’ and pointing to bright flowers or stalls being set up on the roadside for the upcoming Diwali celebrations. We even shared a bewildered chuckle at the stocky lady-men in sarees who flicked their long hair and accosted us at the traffic lights for money.

It’s funny to think that when we first arrived here back in March, I was unsure whether Maya would remember much of her time in India. Now, having watched her develop and grow up SO much in the past months, I know I underestimated this. What her memory chooses to filter or remember only time will tell. And who knows, maybe reading this blog twenty years down the line, a description of something will suddenly ignite a flicker of a memory inside her.

ps - photo above taken of Maya today in her favourite napping spot on the cold, hard floor!


  1. Ratitones!

    un besso muy fuerte desde Angola, para vos desear un bueno regresso a India!

    tia cata

  2. Hi Rebecca ! Welcome back, all of you ! I hope you're not feeling too jet lagged.. the journey east is a lot worse than journeying west. I loved the pics you took in England... Look forward to seeing you guys sooooooooon !

  3. Reading this is making me miss India...What amazing experiences for your family and it's all being recorded here like firing an arrow into the future. Just lovely, I wish blogs existed when mine were young.