Sunday, October 11, 2009

The synop-sis

My sister has always told me that I should visit her in fall. I kept telling her that I would but never really did anything. To travel to 'the other side of the world' is big stuff and needed some serious planning. So when I was asked to go on a business trip to Boston, I almost fell off my chair in disbelief. My manager readily approved a week's leave after the trip for me to visit my sister. I hadn't seen her in 3 years! The last time I saw baby Aish was when she was an infant and now she was a walking talking machine. It was time to show her that Mausi did not live inside the telephone. And of course, I decided it would be more fun not to tell my sister I was coming but to suddenly turn up at her doorstep. (Disclaimer: When I said I was retiring from the surprise business, it referred to birthday surprises only.) Of course, I had to take my bro-in-law into confidence to ensure she'd be at home when I turned up.

"But she'll get mad at me when she finds out that I knew but I didn't tell her!" He said.


"You know her... she'd say 'But the house is so dirty!' and 'I didn't cook anything special!' and all that. And then she'd cry."

"Okay, I'll take care of all that and take all the blame. Please don't tell her anything, okay?"

"Okay." He agreed.

The same evening, my sister called me up and said something that made me jump.

"So... do you prefer chicken or mutton?"


"Do you prefer chicken or mutton?"

"Why are you suddenly asking me that???"

"Nothing... just like that."


So I sent my bro-in-law an email, "You told her???"

"Of course not!" was his reply.

Hmmm... I was a bit sceptical but decided to trust him anyway.

So I landed in the US and earnestly did all the presentations and meetings, and did not think of the vacation part of the trip until I was done. Soon all the work ended and I was all set, waiting for my bro-in-law to pick me up from my hotel and drive me home. The plan was for me to turn up at her door, ring the bell and keep the video camera on when she answered it.

As I came out of my hotel, bro-in-law told me he also had to pick up a friend who was waiting just around the corner. We started walking and next thing I see - my sis and baby Aish are walking towards us!

"JEEJU!!!!!!!! DOUBLE-CROSS!!!!!!!!" was my first thought.

And that's when I realised that my sister was totally oblivious of me walking towards her! Bro-in-law had planned things such that we sisters just bumped into each other on the street.

"WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE????????????????" yelled out my sister in utter disbelief, while I looked around to see where bro-in-law had disappeared. There he was, in a corner, clicking and grinning away.

"Phew. No one can yell at me now. It's a double-surprise!" He said.


As we got into the car, my predictable sister's exact words were, "But the house is so dirty! And I didn't cook anything special!" while bro-in-law and I guffawed. Aish joined us too, though she wasn't quite sure why.

I had not even told my parents I was going to pull this one because my sister calls them up every day and I was sure Mom would have unintentionally blurted something out. So the next step of the plan was to break the news to Mom and Dad.

So my sister set up a conference call with my parents and Viv (Viv was jumping out and down when he told me to make sure he was in the call when we told the parents). Mom thought it was one of our regular conference calls with Viv and me in Singapore and my sister in the US. So I told Aish to break the news to her grandma.

"Aish, say - Grandma, Mausi is playing football with me." I prompted.

Aish said it, but with six people on the line all trying to speak at the same time, all my Mom heard was "Playing football."

"You're playing football, Aish? Very good." She said.


Bro-in-law prompted her again, "Aish, say - Grandma, Mausi is playing football with me in America."

Once again, all that got through was "Playing football with me in America!" which amused my Mom to no end. "What is she saying? Ha ha ha!" She laughed.

We were all getting really impatient. We asked everyone to be quiet and prompted Aish once again. By then, I guess she was really irritated and she said, "Grandma is playing football with me in America!" causing all of us to howl in laughter.

"What is happening? I am so confused." said my Mom. "Why is everyone laughing?"

And that's when we realised we needed someone credible to tell her the real deal. From the entire group, only Viv and bro-in-law were eligible. So bro-in-law got everyone to be quiet again and told Mom in detail about how I had surprised sis.

And then Mom said the words that caused another round of uproarious laughter.

"My goodness!!! But you know what? That is SO her!"

Muahahahaha! :D


Navya said...

Welcome to US of A. Have a great vacation !

Unknown said...

GOLD!!! or at least SILVER!!!
Well done Sayesha and your Jeeju too!Woh to tumse bhi aage nikal gaye surprise dene me!!!

Porkodi (பொற்கொடி) said...

aha.. Bhai in US? and I get bronze!!!

Porkodi (பொற்கொடி) said...

Boston is so far from here :(((( Next time, you should come to the west coast Bhai! But, I would allow you in only with Viv though :P

Jina said...

God!! Ur whole family also has a funny bone?Is ur life like a sitcom??Will you adopt me please????

Hope u had fun with Aish!!!

Neha said...

hey! I live in boston, and it does get pretty colourful here in Fall. have fun!!!

How do we know said...

Have a fantastic time BHai.. and get back to writing again!!!

parikrama said...

Thats so sweeet.

The_Girl_From_Ipanema said...

Once again, all that got through was "Playing football with me in America!" which amused my Mom to no end. "What is she saying? Ha ha ha!" She laughed.

LOL. this was hilarious- our con-calls are often like that...with my mom. totally finding something else funny. :)

Have fun babe. Boston is awesome in the fall.

Stupidosaur said...


Stupidosaur said...


Everyone wants to be adopted by Sayesha for various reasons!

Just few days back I was reading your travelogue. Sanchit wanted to be adopted by you and Viv.

Anyways, speaking of adoption, when do we hear of the little bewdu batendar, born with with a silver bottle or something ;)

LOL! I now remember I asked something similar long back! Am I sounding like that pesky auntyji ;)

Actually I am really wondering what colours this blog would take when that happens! What all adventures we would get to know! And also how that kid is gonna be with parents like you and Viv! Ah selfish me! Such a big question, just for sake of getting to read great blog posts. ;)

Ashwin said...

I live in Boston too. I'd have recommended places to visit here but I recently moved to Boston and so far have barely figured out how to get to work without using a GPS. Well, hope you enjoy your stay here.

Prats said...

Wow you are the surprise queen....

I know your sister would be like totally zapped to see u there :-)

Baatein unkahi si said...

OMG, looks like everyone in your family loves to play pranks and give surprises :-)
Enjoy your trip in US.

humblog said...

Wow. Nice one!
It is good that you could pull it off. I always think of doing this when I go back to visit my folks but I chicken out for whatever reason.
Will do it to someone someday.

BTW, I ain't buying the "retiring from surprise business" part.

What will you do if Roger Federer is willing to show up for friend's birthday party? Will you say "Hey since Roger is in town on your birthday he is going to come to your party. Yeah right!!!

Maryum said...

no precious award today but i still enjoyed ur blog so so much.. u rock at giving surprises..please never stop them...
lodz of luv to u for writing...:)

Meira said...

SO that means the birthday surprises will still happen ;)

Anonymous said...

Nice write up.I had a good laugh!!

Thousif Raza said...

:P, nice one, waiting for more adventures

take care and keep writing........

Neha said...

This was so much of fun to read! I love giving such surprises to family!!! I am so happy that it remained a surprise without ur Bro in law speaking a word abt it to ur wud hv spoilt all the fun :)

Sayesha said...

Thank you! :)

//Woh to tumse bhi aage nikal gaye surprise dene me!!!

Hahaha! Hamari khandani beemari hai! :P

Sheesh! Viv is everybody's laadla! :/

Hahaha! :D

It was indeed beautiful! :)

#How do we know,
Thank you! I'm back and back to writing! :)


#Ipanema Girl,
Thanks! Hope to see you the next time I am in the US!

//Anyways, speaking of adoption, when do we hear of the little bewdu batendar, born with with a silver bottle or something ;)

Tu apni suna. Shaadi kab hai? :)

Haha! Hope you get to know your way around soon! :)

She was! She yelled out "WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE???" in the middle of the road! :D

#Dil se,
Thanks! :)

//I always think of doing this when I go back to visit my folks but I chicken out for whatever reason.Will do it to someone someday.

Yup, don't think too much. Just do it! :)

//What will you do if Roger Federer is willing to show up for friend's birthday party?

Hahaha! Sure! :D

Thanks. :)

Nahinnnnnnnnnnnnn! :)

Thanks! :)

Thanks. :)

Yeah! Jeeju rocks! :)

Stupidosaur said...

Kya karein, chhipkali** nahin milti :(.

** could be referring to my reptilian nature, or the way Anil Kapoor refers to Rani Mukherji in Nayak ;)