Sunday, January 25, 2009
Our First Few Weeks In India.....Adjusting
Well, enough about Paris, for those of you that have been wondering how things are going in New Delhi, here are the highlights of our first few weeks.
We landed at Indira Gandhi International Airport at approximately 11:00pm on New Years Eve......and by the time we cleared customs and retrieved our luggage, the three of us wished each other a Happy New Year...Linda got a kiss.......a fitting way to start our "New Adventure" in India. Ramesh faithfully met us at the airport and after the introductions and wrestling all of the bags into "Indy"...we made our way home. It was late and we did our best to settle in as quickly as we could.....but I don't think we managed to get to bed until about 3:00am.
We woke up that Saturday to fog......dense fog......not much sunshine and Linda was asking in a concerned voice if this weather was "normal". Although I tried to reassure her, being in a strange place with the strange look, feel, sounds and smells of Delhi, I could imagine just what was going through her mind. It was Saturday, and after some additional acquainting with the "flat", I suggested lunch at one of my favorite restaurants. It was a good choice and we were off to great start......it was a hit with both Linda and Preston and their first taste of true/authentic Indian food. After lunch I thought it would be a good idea to introduce Linda to some of the shopping spots.....Spencer's (she liked), Ambiance Mall (impressive)and the Indian version of Wal Mart "Big Bazaar" (which was a disaster). If you ever want to hear a great story, ask Linda about Big Bazaar. Although we had a great start, I introduced too much to her in one day......I should have known better.
Sunday, we had an appointment with Preston's Guidance Counselor at the school.....Mr. Ridenour.....and Preston got his chance to see the school live for the first time......walk the campus...see the soccer field....and talk about his academic life on campus.
I started work again and Preston started school on the 5th...a Math Placement Test and High School Orientation with all of the other new students who were joining at mid year. The weather had cleared up...the sun was shining and life is good. Although the test was a bit challenging, he did fine....and the anxiety created by the test was quickly erased when Orientation began.....yes Preston discovered that the cute blond girl sitting in the room was not only from Australia, but that she was in the 9th Grade as well. It was a good day for Linda and I as well, because we quickly made friends with the parents of some of the other new students.....Day 5in Delhi and things were still going well.
Day 6 was the first "official" day of school as classes started....at work we were moving into our new office in Gurgaon. The routine was beginning to start...and by Thursday Linda was attending the PSA (Parent Student Association) Tea for all of the new High School parents. Her social circle was growing and she was becoming more comfortable.
Day 7 - more school and work, but it was the first of two Soccer Team Tryout's for Preston.....Wednesday and Friday...the big days!
By the end of the week Preston had learned that he made the JV Soccer Team and that the competition was pretty strong...and hopefully a few things in school as well. We were all invited to dinner at the home of some of our new friends, Gib and Christy, who's son Sam is in Preston's class and on the soccer team as well.
We have a great deal in common; as this is their first overseas assignment as well.
By day 5 or 6, I began wearing earplugs to bed, as we have developed "pressure pump" issues and the multitude of lazy dogs in the neighborhood are staying up all night barking because it is cold. I almost forgot the horns...constant honking.....and the construction noise.....(the pump problem still exists, even at the time of the writing of this blog entry on the 27th)
We shopped for window treatments that first weekend; our flat has a very generous amount of windows, which if you were a goldfish would make you quite at home.....Linda is being a trooper.
Our noisy pump issue has escalated by day 7, and we now have a leaky "geyser". Yes a geyser was leaking in our house....not the kind you find in Yosemite Park.....the ugly device that a person relies on for hot water to take a shower.....a 5 minute shower, with alternating pressure that is driving Linda and I crazy. She can't wash her hair, because the hot water runs out, there is water all over the floor because of the leak.....we are showering in Preston's bathroom, she is doing make up in another, our clothes are in separate rooms......musical showers.....dogs barking, pumps running and cycling on and off......ear plugs.....and we are experiencing India. Just when things are going well, she sneaks up on you and reminds you that she is still here.....at her finest.
But overall, Linda and Preston are adjusting well.....the next week gets even better. Still having "plumbing issues", but I learn to turn the pumps off at night.....no more earplugs, and I am getting used to the dogs and the honking......I have a day trip to Jaipur, a city where we have a hotel under construction.....I forget to take my camera but fall in love with the city. More to come on Jaipur.
Our shipment from the US hasn't arrived as of yet. I learn later that week that our Chairman is coming for a visit, and I have a conflict......I am going to miss Preston's first soccer game......and I learn that our shipment has arrived, but is scheduled to be delivered on...Saturday.....the same day as we will be receiving our first house guest from the United States.
Can't everything happen at once.....PLEASE! But Linda remains calm, cool and collected.
The Chairman's visit goes well,Preston's team loses their first game, all but two of our boxes get delivered (they still haven't been found), unpacking is therapeutic as we have items familiar to home with us now.....and we get almost everything unpacked before we need to pick up our guest at the airport that evening at 9:30pm.
This brings us up to date through the 17th......the picture above is a "geyser".....the other is the pressure pump that is still noisy......please excuse me while I stop writing......I have to the roof to go turn off the pumps and get to bed!