Diversity, but very little inclusion.

Diversity’s a term I heard for the first time when I was in the midst of MBA applications. Until then, I didn’t know being a woman or an Indian or an engineer or a factory worker was actually that big a deal. As a kid, I went to a school where most people came from very similar socio economic backgrounds, we had just two genders, we ate similar things, we wore similar clothes, we spoke similar things, yet we knew we were all quite different from each other. Some were good at tests, some at sport, some at jokes, some at getting punished. This was not called diversity though, it was known as “failure” – failure to comply to a standard template that we were all measured by.

Even as an adult in a corporate setup, even though we all tried to think the same way, speak the same language and generally try very hard to comply to a standard template, we all knew we were quite different from each other. Some were patient, risk averse, others great at great at building consensus or internalising everything before learning or some were manipulative and others collaborative – all shades of personalities that add colours to teams and organisations. But once again, the sad fucking thing is that this ain’t called diversity either. Being different is viewed as a problem because we are still swimming in such shallow waters of diversity that we are far from including everything that’s different.

Personally, I am fine if we didn’t acknowledge or “celebrate” diversity because the axes to measure diversity can be infinite, and we’ll never get to explore all of it. This half hearted effort by corporates to “celebrate” diversity is annoying. Why isn’t there a quota for slow learners or lazy people? Why should the gender I identify myself with or who I copulate with matter to my organisation? And if this matters, why doesn’t my working style matter? Why is my workstyle not discounted as diversity but scrutinised as a problem? Why should an entire company work like they are a bunch of headless chickens on a treadmill?

I’ve heard leaders say “We don’t care about gender, race or religion, we recognise and appreciate talent”. I’ll say the problem is with the definition of talent. We have a standard template of what talent is, and are too afraid to include the diverse shades of it. The world needs people who can break these silly templates and take a bet on people, not their perceived compliance to a standard bloody template.

P.S. – Feeling very ranty, so as I always do, I wanted to put it out. But I may not be ranty enough by the time you post your comments, so don’t expect me to engage in a discussion.

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Why are Mysore boys getting divorced?

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Found this cool artwork of the Mysore palace by some Darshan.

Mysore is like Bangalore’s innocent sibling. Every Gen-X Bangalorean’s dream is to retire off in Mysore, although most of them would never do it. Once you get used to the faster pace of life in Bangalore, it’s hard to appreciate the calm in Mysore. I hear Mysore’s no longer as calm as it used to be, but its’ still 20 years behind Bangalore for sure. According to my folks, people from Mysore are generally more cultured, traditional and all that compared to Bangaloreans. Smaller town, lower exposure, so fair enough.

Today, I was randomly stalking people on a matrimonial site because you know, market research and all. I started by filtering “Kannada Brahmin” boys who had created their own profiles, mostly because it’s familiar territory. It was interesting to see that 10% of the people were divorced/ awaiting divorce. And what was more interesting was – at least 20% of them hail from Mysore or have ancestral origin there. Shit! What will my parents say now?
With absolutely no further information, I want to list a bunch of hypothesis that could have caused this trend:
  • Random coincidence?
  • They were married to women from Bangalore, who were too forward for these innocent boys. No?
  • Given that a lot of them had listed themselves as only sons and their mums being homemakers, could it be possible they are all mamas boys, and had trouble getting along with other women?
  • May be these boys went to forin and lost off their culture
  • Wait, no! Could Mysore boys indeed be not so paavam? Ussho!
  • Only people from smaller towns like Mysore or random edge cases like very desi NRIs still use traditional matrimonial websites, causing the data to be skewed
Whether from Mysore or not, most of us don’t know shit about staying married till we get married. First of all, we choose partners based on some frivolous criteria that has little to no relevance in a marriage. Once married, we are confronted with the reality of living with someone we know very little about and loose our shit. Blame media, blame social conditioning, blame your spouse, or some random matrimonial site/ app, but at some point, you’ll need to pause and take a hard look at yourself and ask yourself how prepared you were to be hit by this tornado called “marriage”.
A relationship is a bunch of actions followed by reactions, and a massive network effect from their on all aspects of your life. Unless you were aware of this, you are bound to ask yourself at least once through your marriage why you ever bothered getting married. If you find yourself asking this question everyday, then there’s no doubt you’ll get divorced at some point. So, the only thing you need to do to not end up divorced, is to know that you’ll never know everything there is to know before you make this decision. If you have what it takes to deal with the unknown and the unpleasant, jump. Else, wait.
But, if its already too late for you, and you happen to be from Mysore, write to me. For doubting your paavamness, I’ll give you a discount on any of the services on Marriage Broker Auntie.

Making a matrimonial profile

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Eons ago, I was out clubbing with some friends and I saw this boy, who was swaying to some metal, with his eyes closed. He was carelessly holding a beer bottle in one hand, and carried this non-challance that was so attractive. That was his signal (besides the fact that he had a fancy degree from a fancy school, which I already knew about). Unfortunately, given how online the world is and how little opportunity most of us have at emitting such “signals”, we have to make do with an attractive “profile”, because that’s the only signal you can emit these days. It’s pretty your only shot at getting anyone’s attention at all, online.

Depending on what app/ site you are on, you could either be a “naughty boy” or “boy with no habits”. But deep down, who are you, really? Do you know who you are as a partner, in a relationship? Do you know what type of a partner really suits you? How do you leverage your matrimonial profile to attract the right partner? I have a few tips here to help write up a simple matrimonial profile that can help build a meaningful relationship:

Step 1: What matters to you about you?

Even before you get to the “I want a liberal but homely girl or a boy with MS from US” type of wishlist, make a list of all the things that matter to you about you. Whether you care about being in the market or not, do this little exercise the moment you get the slightest clue that you’ve been put in the market by parents, grandparents or random aunty on your street. Make a list of top 10 things someone who’ll live with you must be aware of about you. For instance, a list could look like this:

  • I have to start my morning with a peaceful cup of coffee
  • I love my family, which means sometimes I will do things I hate, just for their sake
  • I like to discuss all disagreements till finish, and don’t like to leave things hanging
  • I watch absolute trash on TV, and I love it, so I won’t stand any judgements on that
  • I am a cleanliness freak, bordering on OCD which means I will assassinate anyone who messes with my order at home…

…the list could go on, doesn’t really have to be just 10 things, but at least 10.

Step 2: What matters to you about you, today? and in 10 years?

Once you have the above list, ask yourself if each of these things would matter even after 10 years of being with someone. If not, get rid of it from the list. This leaves you with the absolute list of things that matter to you about you.

Step 3: Love is not blind, its about all the faults you don’t mind.

Now that we are done with ourselves, let’s move on to what we want/ don’t want in a partner.

  • Make a list of top 3 things that you absolutely cannot compromise on in a partner. For each of these, justify it with why it is so important.  Again, check whether this matters now, or will matter forever. Through this process, you will figure out if something is a frivolous wish or truly important to you.
  • Next, make a list of the things you will absolutely not tolerate from the other person – it could be anger, dishonesty, lack of interest in learning, etc. and justify this with reasons for not wanting to put up with.

A combination of the two will tell provide you with a great framework to choose a partner.

Step 4: Choose your primary channel

Once you’ve arrived at this step, you’ll be fairly clear which app/ site you are most likely to find your partner. If it’s Bharatmatrimony, then start here in terms of filling your profile. The registration starts with a bunch of very objective questions about your height, weight, caste, education, salary and what not. Don’t be dejected by the fact that Bharatmatrimony asks for this information where-as tinder doesn’t. All these sites/ apps are trying their best to objectify a highly irrational decision, nothing more. So, provide information that matters to you. If you don’t care about religion or caste, you can choose any, and move on. Towards the end of the registration process, you will be asked to write about you. This is where you should write a crisp bio about you based on your learnings from Step 2.

Step 5: Diversify your portfolio

Once you have filled out your profile on one app/ site, you should consider listing yourself on all others. Remember, while these channels outwardly signal “who you are” to someone who finds you on one of these apps/ sites, if you have written your bio loud and clear, I am sure there’s no reason for anyone to be confused about who you are irrespective of the channel you have chosen. The key here is that your profile should be coherent with the one on your primary channel. You cannot be a “homely girl with no habits” on one, and “a feminazzi” on the other. This only means you either have biopolar disorder or your account is hacked (by your parents!!). Most of the time, there is a large enough overlap across these apps/ sites, but you want to address the tail cases, because that’s where you find love.

Step 6: Stay alive

Once you have made your profile, use your learnings from Step 3 to choose potential partners. Make contact, make conversation and make progress (either way!). Don’t die on people. Don’t overdo the process for one month and then hibernate for six, atleast not on your primary channel. You’ll only be older (not just by age) but even as a profile. This too signals something, trust me, it ain’t a great signal. Now, I understand if you’ve not liked anyone you spoke to or no one responded, and this disheartened you and made you jump off the app. But that’s when you should seek help – either from family, friends or Marriage Broker Auntie. It’s quite easy to fix any issues 6-12 months into the process. But beyond that, the only thing you’ll be doing is massaging your frustrations. So, stay alive.

Step 7: Close the deal

You won’t believe this, but most people in the world today are pathetic at closing the deal. I have heard all sorts of rubbish reasons like I am busy at work, or I have other priorities in life or I am changing my job and what not for people not making the effort to close the deal. Believe me, staying married is more work than getting married. So, if your professional life is stalling you from choosing a partner, I can’t imagine what your job would do to your marriage. So, quit giving yourself excuses and figure out how to manage all your priorities in life. Close the deal when you need to, not when you “find time”.

Step 8: Stay married

This needs a whole other blogpost. But if you’ve got till here, well done. You are half way there.

Having said all of this, it’s much easier said than done. So, I hear you. It takes discipline to truly follow this and keep at it till you have succeeded. Once you have done your bit, trust the universe a little bit to do its magic. If not, there’s always Marriage Broker Auntie’s Market Strategy service for help. 😀

Oh Burma Burma!

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If you live in Bangalore, you’ve probably heard of “Burma Burma” for sure. It’s this vegetarian Burmese restaurant in Indiranagar. Last May, when I was visiting India, my sister and I wanted to go to this restaurant with the family, but we couldn’t get a table. Either they didn’t take reservations or they were too full, I can’t remember now. Most new semi-fancy (ready anything fancier than a dharshini) to fancy vegetarian places in Bangalore get damn crowded, especially if they are located in an area with even a small “bomman” population. At that point, Burma Burma was relatively new, and so we thought we’ll probably try again after the novelty wears off.

A month or so ago, I tried getting a table yet again, but in vain. This time, I was a bit perplexed as to why the restaurant was still such a rage, even after a year. Also, given that there are so many restaurants in Indiranagar, a logical conclusion I made was that this restaurant must serve really good food. So, I suddenly wanted to go to this restaurant even more. So on an impulse, I called the restaurant last night to book a table for 2 for lunch this afternoon. And guess what, I actually managed to get a table!! Woohoo I thought.

We got there a little ahead of time, and were impressed by the decor. It’s quite well done, and has a lot of wood, which I personally love. I’ve never been to Burma, but the decor or the vibe felt authentic based on the furniture I saw around. Overall, the service was good although the waiter was too proactive for my taste. The British side of me (yes, two years of living in India does entitle me to have a British side)  was a little bummed when our waiter bullied us into ordering something else (bullying is a strong word I know, but when you’ve had a fight with the husband, the last thing you need is someone else telling you what you need in life!). Thanks to my cold, I wanted their pepper soup, but the waiter enthusiastically suggested I try their samosa soup which was like a regular Indo-Chinese hot and sour soup. Meh.

We then decided to try the salad platter, which is basically a plate of 3 small portions of different salads, at the price of 2 full salads. I think that was a bit of an overkill that made me not appreciate rest of the meal, but that was entirely our fault. Salads were nice, but I felt they could have done better with the plating. It was quite clumsy. At this point, I realised I was being super fussy. Then I wondered why this was the case.

I’d built up such high expectations of the place based on two previous failed attempts to find a table that the food had to be simply mind-blowing to ever live up to those expectations. The food was just good, but not spectacular. Then we were served the starter – crispy lotus root something, which was lotus root chips tossed in tonnes of uncooked paprika. You could hardly enjoy the flavour of the vegetable, it was so sad. We ate two pieces and decided to doggy box it. But then again, it could be me – my appreciation for uncooked spice has plummeted ever since I moved back to Bangalore despite having “gult” roots.

Anyway, screw me, I looked around to see how others were doing and why the place is always so full. I noticed something interested – Apart from us, most couples (people who came in twos) were seated at four seater tables. This restaurant had just one (atleast in my line of sight!) two seater table although 50% of their crowd had actually come in twos. This meant that there was always someone waiting at the tea-bar or outside. That’s when I realised why it was so hard to get a table here – It wasn’t exactly the food (although I’d say the food was decent if not for my expectations), instead it was poor restaurant design.

Given that the four seater tables were not actually made up of 2 two-seater tables, they can’t be flexible with their layout based on the reservations. On the flip side, half occupied tables means you have more privacy. I guess it’s always a fine balance between how good the food is and how willing you are to have someone sitting in your face. Given that the food was alright, I’d be less willing to tolerate a stranger in my face. So, I am not going out of my way to reach out to the restaurant to provide my feedback. They’ll continue to do well and die a natural death in about 10 years, I suppose. Sort of like the bad taste in my mouth, which will hopefully die before dinner.

The bro(ker) code

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Although I started off as a “broker” arranging marriages, Marriage Broker Auntie no longer brokers marriages. It is a market strategy service for those looking to get married. It is a relationship coaching program. It’s going to be much more over time, but the name “Marriage Broker Auntie” lives on because it is a brand that represents the intention to help people find strong and healthy relationships.

I am very passionate about what I do, and I get very deeply involved in the details of all stories my clients tell me, and root for their success in love and relationships always. I always say, once an auntie, always an auntie. It doesn’t matter if someone signs up for a one-off session or a 3 month program, I watch out for them always. So, it’s only natural that I expect similar warmth from my clients, in return.

So, for those of you who are ever blessed with the opportunity to work with a mentor in the market, you must know that the love is conditional on the following:

  1. Keep me informed: No, I am not talking about 24/7 news channel level updates. If I set you up with someone and you either like/ don’t like this person, I’d love for you to come tell me about it, especially before I have to come ask you myself. There was once this uncle (dad’s friend), who I decided to help by introducing him to a potential groom for his daughter. They met, the girl needed time to think and eventually went back and told the boy that she thought their personalities didn’t match and hence, did not want to take things forward. I found out about all this from the boy, who quite sweetly kept me posted. The uncle on the other hand, went completely MIA on me – didn’t respond to my texts, didn’t answer/ return my calls and quite honestly, it was so disappointing. Not cool.
  2. If you’re no longer in the market, let me know: No, you don’t have to invite me for your wedding. But if you’ve signed up with me, you know it’s a lifetime membership of sorts when it comes to Marriage Broker Auntie. So, if you get out of the market, do let me know else I’ll keep spamming you. There was once this girl who replied all on an email when I introduced her to a guy in the market announcing that she is no longer single. Forget my embarrassment, imagine how the poor chap felt. Sigh.
  3. I got bills to pay too: Sure, I am super passionate about what I do and I am almost always available in any relationship crisis, but I need money too. It’s give and take, you pay me, I mentor you. Simple enough? Don’t go MIA on me when you are asked to pay. More than 50% of the sign ups on Marriage Broker Auntie are incomplete as they never get past the last bit where they need to pay for a service. If you really cannot afford the service but are in desperate need of it, write me a note, I am happy to write that time off as charity. But, don’t run away, because you don’t believe I’ve got to pay bills too.
  4. My time is as important as yours: As a coach, I charge people for the time I invest in them as a proxy for their commitment. I don’t keep track of the time I invest, but that doesn’t mean my time’s cheap. It means I am committed to your cause. If you and I are not able to accomplish what we’ve collectively set out to achieve in 5 sessions, I consider both your time and my time wasted. Hence, I always come prepared for all my sessions and would appreciate the same from you. I am merely a facilitator, I don’t tell you what to do, but I guide you in realising what you already know, but allow me to take you on this journey. So, this means, sometimes you have to just listen.

These are just 4 simple things that are part of the bro(ker) code. If you can, try and respect them when you work with a broker, or anyone at all who has good intentions to help you find meaningful relationships in life. If not, then shaadi.com only gathi for you.

 

 

Tearing down the ideal husband

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For the longest time, I remember romanticising the idea of an ideal husband. Back in 2006, I had even found this boy who I thought was great marriage material. He was well educated, smart, good looking, hailed from a good family, belonged to the same caste as me and we got along quite well. At this point, I was barely 20 years old. Where did all these ideas of an ideal husband even come from? None of them were my own.

Some context: Of the 8 cousins on my dad’s side who were older than me, 1 girl and 3 boys were married by this point and all of them had had an arranged marriage, each alliance beating the previous on money or fame or some other crucial attribute that elevated the status of my family in the society even further. Next, was this cousin sister, who was in love with a guy from another state, did not garner enough support for a long time to go ahead and marry as the whole family was fighting the love marriage epidemic. So, you can see where my ideas of an ideal husband came from. They came from my family, who had derived their ideas of a good partner from a society, that does nothing but sits back and passes judgement as if the music would never stop (using a musical chairs reference here!!).

Now, 13 years hence, if you asked me what makes an ideal husband, I am not sure I’d even have an answer to that question. I have been married for over 8 years now, and a husband is no longer a static idea for me. It is this real dynamic person that I share my life with. We are constantly learning new things about ourselves and each other, and we are still in the process of learning acceptance and reasonable responses to each others thoughts and actions. I can’t believe that I ever thought a static list of 10 points would determine the trajectory of a marriage that lasts a few decades.

I decided to marry my husband when I was 22 based on my juvenile ideas of an ideal husband, but none of that mattered every time we fought, and fought so often. It was not like I thought Oh, I’ve come back home exhausted from work, while he sat at home all day and did not bother tidying up the house, but you know what, it’s okay because he comes from great family or that my parents are happy I married from the same caste. I would still be pissed as hell for him not keeping the house tidy.

So, I just put tidiness on the list, and that should make the list for an ideal husband no? But no, there will be another situation on another day that will emphasise another attribute that’s essential in a partner. The list can be endless, but each of us only really have a handful of strengths if we are lucky, so optimising for an ideal husband seems like a dumb thing. Instead, optimise for a good partnership, and what each of you will continue to bring to it.

The idea of ideal is like forcing a trend line out of the many myriad relationships that exist in the world today. It’s not real, it’s not a reflection of any one relationship. Every individual values different things in a partner in different situations, and each one of us has the moral responsibility to respect our own. We simply cannot compare our values and situations to someone else’s just like that. That would just be a recipe for a disastrous relationship. Apply your own rules, not your mother’s. But if you ever feel under-confident about applying your own rules or sticking by it, then use the trend line. But remember, you’ll risk never ever living upto the trend line for the rest of your life, mostly because you were never meant to.

So, ask yourself who you are and what you value in a partnership and whether the guy you are evaluating will live up to their end of the deal a decade from now. If yes, there you have it – the husband. And trust me, he will always always be far from ideal (unless he leaves the toilet seat down everyday of course!), so you’re better off tearing down the idea of an ideal husband today just so you have a real shot at building a beautiful relationship with someone who has just torn down their idea of an ideal wife.

 

Letters to my Berry#27

IMG_1976The original plan was to write you a letter every quarter between 2 and 3. I wrote the first one at two and quarter, but miserably failed there after. Now, we are at the two and five-sixth mark, so I decided without further ado, I should write #27 before I complete writing #26 (the one that was supposed to go up at two and a half). I will try my best to capture the stories from April 2019 to now, but if this letter reads a little bit all over the place, you know why.

I started a new job in April, and since the office was quite close to ajji thatha’s house, I figured that you and I could stay with them for a month while you get accustomed to living in Bangalore and I get used to a new job without having to worry too much about you. Ajji thatha had a great time with you, although spending entire days running behind you might have been quite exhausting but they never complained.

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Some highlights of being in ajji mane was being well fed at regular intervals by your “Gramma” with tonnes of stories. You loved playing with Ganapathy, the cat who came to ajji thatYou loved eating “uppu thuppa anna” everyday. You loved that Ajji’s cupboard is filled with “make-ups and everythings”, so your grandma was your natural scapegoat for your make up sessions. The thing about so much pampering in India means people treat you like a child who is incapable of doing anything without adult support/ supervision. A lot of the independent thinking and abilities that were nurtured in you through the two years in London will unfortunately fade off into conditioned dependence. For instance, you started eating on your own at about 10 months, but now you are back to being fed almost every meal, which is a bit disappointing. I like feeding you alright, but I prefer you did it on your own. May be that’s why everytime you are hungry, you think of gramma, and not me. 🙂

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You started day care in India from May 2019 as we moved back home to Jayanagar, and both appa and I got into the grind of work. You joined Klay, which is a pretty good day care by Indian standards, but I guess it is sooo different from the one you were used in London, that you never quite took to it. There’s far lesser outdoor playtime in this daycare. Also, there are auntys who “take care” of kids, which makes the setting feel like a bit of a jail rather than the free and independent place Buttercups was. They feed children, pat them to sleep, take them to the bathroom, hold the kids by their arms and drag them as if they were incapable of walking along on their own. Now, I would have never ever noticed any of this, but I have seen much better in London, so I can’t help but empathise with you. I am only going to say, I am so sorry to have moved you from your natural habitat and have to subjected to something that treats you as less than who you are.

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We did try to cheer you up with a mini trip in May to be able to spend more time with you. We went to Tapas’s homestay in Sakleshpur where you made a new friend, Aku (Smayan). You enjoyed that trip so much, that you still keep remembering your friend and his family. You even got to play in a waterfall while on this trip. You saw tadpoles that you called “cadpoles” and for some reason, you were quite worried about getting into water with them.

Going to nursery started becoming especially painful once you started school in June as the school was markedly more free compared to daycare. After much debate, Appa and I put you in this school called “The Montessori School” in JP Nagar. Yeah, that’s what the debate was about because I thought it was too far, but Appa thought I was being shortsighted to base my argument on something so trivial. So, Appa ferries you back and forth from school everyday while he works at a cafe nearby while you are at School. You absolutely love this school because I think they let you be you. They even challenge you everyday with little “work” that keeps you so busy you don’t find the time to eat the snack at school. Actually no, you just find the food too “tasty” to bother (your word for yucky is tasty, and we haven’t bothered correcting you because we want you to figure it out on your own. :D)

You have lots of friends at both school and daycare. For a while you never told me any of their names, and every time I asked, you’d say, either “I don’t know” or “nothing” and laugh. Occasionally, you tell me about some bad guy or bad girl in your school or nursery. When someone troubles you, I am not sure what you do but you come and tell me that you told them, “No, thank you.” Poor british thing. We have generally refrained from teaching you how to fend for yourself in such situations, because frankly, I am not quite sure if one person’s strategy works for another and so you are probably better off evolving your own. Now, if some intervention is required at any point, you can trust that I will hunt down like a mommy hawk. 😀

You can very quickly perceive unacceptable behaviour. Appa is usually the one getting a lecture from you everyday when he slightly raises his voice. You tell him off that he is not very nice and that he shouldn’t be shouting at you. Thatha also has relatively lesser patience with you, and so when he is a bit stern with you, you tell him off too. Given that you are great at pattern recognition, I worry that you’ve kind of built a pattern in your head that all men are bad. You tell me that you don’t like daddy because they shout at you, especially when you want to put on lipstick and clip.

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You love girls for sure, because you got to meet tonnes of friends of mine.. Shru, Mads, Taps and Yashashree. You like that I have friends just like you. Apart from school and nursery, you also have friends who are appa or amma’s friend’s kids, like Sahana and Veda who you loved playing with when they came home. You have also attended 3 birthday parties so far – Richu’s, Sammu’s and Avani Akka’s. You love parties and presents, which makes me wonder how we should celebrate your 3rd birthday which is less than 2 months away now. I’d really like to have a little party at home with just your friends, but let’s see how that goes.

The wonderful thing about moving back has been that you’ve met more people in the last 2 months than you did over the two years there. You get to visit ajji thatha often, meet avva, Ashi, Jaaga, Mamu, Babli, Swaroopa, Chinni, Shreya, Pinkoo, Kavya on mumma’s side. On appa’s side, you love going to Inna ajji’s house very often and you also have a special chap-li just for her house. You love playing with your brother Sammu and Snaaku, meeting Putti atte, Sreenath, Mama-ajji and Shivamma. You miss Manti a lot, you keep telling me how she died like the beans plant every time we are in the balcony by her house. She would have loved to watch you talk this much. 😦

On the skills front, you now know how to wash clothes, fold clothes (only hankies, mind you as irregular shapes mess with you), wipe tables and also recognise all pawns in chess and arrange the board on your own. We have started introducing you to puzzles. If they are too complex, you get flustered quite quickly. But what I have realised is that you need a little teaching and handholding before you can do something on your own with a bit of persistence. So, I have started sitting down with you to do “sticking activity” which you absolutely love doing with me, apart from bathing together of course (Amma and Berry gujju time is your favourite daily activity). You continue to love your bed time stories, and I keep adding books to your collection. Oh and the most recent addition to your interests is your own baby violin (which was appa’s violin when he was little) which you like to play. Now, I want to find you a teacher to help you play the violin, but then it might be too early for you. So, hopefully by the time I write the next edition, we’ll be there. 😉

As usual, love watching you grow my munchkoo, can’t wait for you to grow more wonderful each day but then again I want you to be my little boo forever. Happy two and five sixths!