This Sunday I intend to redeem myself and post my happiness post bang on time. I've plenty to be happy about.
No matter where you go, no matter how many years go by, the city of your birth and childhood always remains special. It holds the dearest memories of a million seemingly inconsequential things that gave you immeasurable happiness. That's what Lucknow is to me. Each year I return during the summer and try to recreat and reach out to all of those things. There's a special warmth in the smiles, a special welcome in the greetings.
Since the twins came along I love bringing them to this city of my birth to share a bit of my childhood no matter how different it is from there's. The food I loved, the friends I had, the places I enjoyed going to... All of it.
The happiness list is not easy to make, though, because it's the scores of intangible things that make me happy here. Nonetheless I'm trying....
Even as we landed the kids were welcomed with that hug from dadu at the airport..
Mercifully my parents' home and The Husband's home are just a couple of minutes walk from each other and so the family converged the evening of our arrival. A few hours later we were off to our favourite roadsde pani-puri stall to kick off the home coming.
That kind of set the tone for the coming days. The two sets of parents here believe in the old traditional way of expressing love... Food! The FIL spoils the kids silly with laddoos ensuring there's always a ready supply at home. Ostensibly they are for the kids but who's checking to see how many the mum gets away with? Hah!
That's not to say there's nothing specially for me. Since the FIL discovered my favourites I don't have to ask him or remind him either. Nowhere in the world do you get jalebis and khastas like in Lucknow. If you've been here earlier you'll know my Lucknow holiday starts with these pictures, always. Here they are again.
The kids like the jalebis well enough but turn up their noses at the super spicy khasta filling.
The MIL meanwhile is not to be left behind. There are hugs aplenty which H has begun to resist, just a tiny bit. N, though revels in the attention and is often found perched on someone's lap no matter that she's a tall 8-year-old!
Despite a sever knee problem, she makes sure the dinner table is laden with all our old favourites. Palak-paneer tops the list. I can never get it perfect like her despite having her go over the recipe a hundred times. It's the kids favourite too. That's a bonus because the plates are polished clean even without my constant 'Eat fast, keep chewing, talk less'.
What the twins like best, however, is goofing around with cousins. It's a bit of a madhouse in this tiny place with kids getting underfoot no matter which way you turn. They spend the day showing off varied interesting talents like who can do the most summersaults or who can burp the loudest.
That's it for now. Today evening we're off for a movie with the kids - The Bhootnath sequel. They've watched the first one countless times so this promises to be a treat. And then it's a PIZZA PARTY.
Okay, since I said that.. To appease my own conscience, I need to add that I'm off to the gym from Monday!! See you folks tomorrow at the A to Z Challenge with another one of my favourite authors.
Meanwhile be happy.