Sunday, March 30, 2008

Obama Mama Part II

I hope there are going to be many parts to this story! Last week (March 21), Barak Obama visited Oregon. Luckily, we were aware of this event in advance to register for a free ticket; the tickets 'sold out' within 24 hours. I really wanted to go... and after debating in my head whether or not I could swing it on a cold Friday morning, I decided this is a rare opportunity. Ranjeewa (love him!) said he'd stay home with Anjali while I set out to see the Man. I left the house at 6:55 am (really early for me) and caught a bus and the light rail to the Memorial Coliseum. The gates opened at 7:30 and Obama was not even supposed to be in the building till 9:30 am. At 7:20 I was in line along with thousands of people sandwiched between retired grandparents and 20 something youngsters from South Bend, IN. Then I got close to the gate and stood next to a woman and infant from Vancouver, WA. After chatting with her for a while, I noticed she was wearing dog tags, and I just blurted "was your husband in the military?" And she said yes, turned her lips down, sighed and said "and he never came back". She had a SIX month old son in her arms. I fought hard to hold back tears.... I hadn't seen Anjali that morning.
Once inside I settled on a mezzanine seat and was amazed at the 13,000 other people who also made it that morning. There were some pumped up introductions, people did the wave and chanted "yes, we can", "O-bama" just like it were a Springsteen concert. Bill Richardson and Obama came out together and the crowd went WILD. Bill gave a nice introduction, and endorsement, before Obama began to speak. I'd heard him speak before on TV and the internet, so nothing was a surprise... I was there for the crowd effect. And it was great. During a pause in his speech a woman shouted "I love you!" and he paused and said "I love you back", the crowd went wild, again. It was just amazing to see so many people of all walks of life, ethnicities etc. I met a former retired, black, cancer surviver, co-worker of mine, parents who kept their kids from going to school and took the day off to come see him, and even Anjali's pediatrician and her partner. It was really moving and I get why they call it the 'Obama effect' and I couldn't help thinking "wow... if he doesn't get the Dem. nomination what a waste of opportunity". Hope, yes we can. I do believe this guy can really make a change. He comes across as sincere and so many people feel that way. We need an outsider, not an insider. Go, Obama!
How cute is this? Ranjeewa wont let me do this to his hair!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Ikea Love

The other week I went to the new Ikea store in Portland for the FIRST time, and Oh, my! I was BLOWN away. I know its considered the WalMart of Europe (and yes everything seems to be made in China), but I was really impressed with the concept and all the cool and affordable stuff. One of the neat things we picked up was a red piggy bank for Anjali. I thought this would be a nice way to introduce her to some fiscal responsibility. But her relationship with the piggy bank was something I didn't expect. She started to baby the piggy bank to the point she lost complete interest in her favorite doll 'manike'. Here she is feeding piggy bank through its nostrils.
And the other day I hear her saying "dont cry, piggy bank; you have to be smart and beautiful and kind". She does get two coins every night from both Ranjeewa and I. Its amusing to see the gleeful expression on her face, and if one of us gives her a coin she makes sure to come and announce it to the other parent before carefully depositing it.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Polar bear, Polar bear what do you see?

I see fishes swimming beneath this ice berg. Don't you?
Baby polar bear and Thaththi polar bear are fishing here. And yeah... sometimes our bed is a giant ice berg. No global warming here!

I loved this.... This beginning stage of pretend play is so much fun. And its great to see her imagination at work. Anjali has been on a Polar bear binge, and I don't know where it all started. But last week we went to the zoo on an otherwise dreary day, and oh my the Polar bears were a treat. The two 1000lb mammoths were rolling around in the water like little cats, and we spent a good half an hour watching, squealing and giggling at their antics. Even I felt like a kid again.

SOAPBOX: No TV = more imagination?