Monday, July 21, 2008

I'm baaaack... kinda

I'm still on vacation, but I have returned to the land of internet connections and laptops. Not that they were missed really.

My wonderful friend Nan, and her equally wonderful hubby (who I have known since i was I-don't-even-remember-how-old) put up with me, the Angel and the Funny Dude for 5 whole days on their family vacation down the islands.

Thanks be to God that she isn't crawling yet though, whew. Jetties and crawling babies, methinks, are a heart-attack-inducing combo.

But how wonderful to have lots of aunties around to drink tea, and the occasional baby-is-sleeping-beer, gossip, trade tips, and do other female bonding things with! And rambunctious little boys who can transform and be oh-so-gentle. And the beach just outside your door laden with cool shells, driftwood and rocks for Angels to explore. And warm, calm water for hours of splashing immediately followed by mama-gets-a-break-naps in a breezy hammock. And huge spreads of yummy, tasty, mouth watering, trini food!!!

And all in one place, surrounded by close friends.

It is going to be really hard to leave this time :(

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

I've always been a stubborn child

My mom will say that without a doubt. And I've grown into a stubborn mama. Despite all the warnings I am receiving, I will continue to:

> Hold the angel for as long as she wants even after my left arm has long gone dead.
> Sleep with her snuggled safely and sometimes sweatily next to me
> Feed her safe adult food without pureeing everything into ambiguous mush.
> Run like a mad woman to her side if she calls out for me, no matter how calmly she calls.
> Not let her cry if she is unhappy.
> Happily stick my boob into her mouth whenever she wants it, without the convenience? of sterilizing pumps, bottles, and nipples.
> Not go anywhere that she can't, like the hot club with the everybody-will-be-there-party.
> Refuse to confine her to a playpen.
> Let her suck on her pacifier if that is what she wants.

But OH NO! She will get too attached to you!

REALLY??? HOW TERRIBLE!!! A baby who loves to be with her mama?? It is the end of civilization as we know it! Call the ... ahhh... I dunno.. somebody to fix it.

Yes, I am making my bed. And oh how soft, snuggly, and perfectly comfy it is :)

Monday, July 14, 2008

Oh Happy Day

Doesn't this pic just about sum it up? I love my country... and it appears, so does the angel.

She is such a trooper! She has crossed the Atlantic, gone from living like a hermit to being surrounded be dozens of adoring aunties, uncles, grannies, grandads, some sober, some not, but all adoring and whisking her off to be adored by more aunties et al. And she isn't complaining!

And her mama is eternally grateful.

Grateful for the other mama friends who have completely different parenting styles, but don't judge. Grateful for friends who are there to talk about everything from nappies and boobs to Brangelina. Grateful for fabulous friends who have houses on the beach and allow us to come stay. Grateful for wonderful friends who take the angel to see the cool stuff over-there so that her mama can be not-over-there, even if it is only for 5 minutes. Grateful for grannies who cook breakfast, lunch, dinner. Grateful for a wonderful funny dude who looks after himself, doesn't mind the hours of girl talk, or at least doesn't complain, and fits in with ease.

Life is good.

Friday, July 11, 2008

A Tale of 4 cities

I had forgotten how HOT and STICKY it is here! Geeeeezzz. Drip drip drip, fan, pant, fan, drip drip drip.

Not that I'm complaining of course :)

Tallinn to London, 3 hours > London to Tobago, 9 hours plus 1 hour delay > Tobago to Trinidad, 15 minutes plus 2 hour delay.

By the time we pulled into my parent's garage i was TIE-UHHHD.

We left rainy and chilly Tallinn and arrived in equally rainy and chilly London. Not much of a story there. The angel handled pretty well, the occasional ''I am sleepy'' protests, but nothing too major. I'll admit, I was worried about the upcoming trans-atlantic haul.

Gatwick airport seemed to be having one of those everything-will-wrong-today days. Poor guys and gals working there. It seems that they are trying to replace check-in agents with 'puters. Only the 'puters eh working like they should. So mass confusion reigned. And the conveyor belts for the luggage were striking too.

Have you ever seen a Trini living in foreign coming home?? We talkin' bout 5 or 6 suitcases packed with all the tings in foreign that we doh have home. No wonder the poor conveyor belts gave up. The angel slept for most of the 2 hours that just getting checked in took. I was a grateful mama-bear.

As for the actual flights, she was a perfect angel! She played, slept, and flirted with everyone around. When she got hungry, hubby draped a big ol' blanket over us. I can only imagine how we looked, but it was nothing if not amusing :)

And now I am home. Its a bit rainy but at least its warm. Trips down the islands and to the beach are in planning, the phone in ringing, various aunties are stopping by, and mom is cooking. Ahh. Home sweet home.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

All my bags are packed

I'm ready to go!!! I'm sure I have forgotten to pack something. And I'm sure that I will discover that I need it somewhere over the Atlantic. But I'm sure I will survive. And as long as there are boobs, the angel is generally happy.

Sooo... until next time I get a computer and the internetz and free time to blog all at the same time:

I bid you Adieu (bow)

Monday, July 7, 2008

Ying and Yang

The difference between Estonians and Trinis as illustrated by reading a poem to an angel:

Trini (me): LET it rain!! WHO CARES??? I've a train, UPSTAIRS!

Estonian (hubby): Letitrainwhocaresiveatrainupstairs.

Yes, being colour blind seems to extend to his speech as well. hehehe. The angel loves it nonetheless :)

He is the ying to my yang.

I had been in cold, dark, wintery Tallinn for 3 days when one of the 2 people I knew here called to say he was heading out for a few beers. Why not, I thought. The TV in the hotel room was only showing stuff in not-english, so I was up for adventure. And in pre-angel days, was there much else other than drinking and liming until wee hours? Not really.

He was sitting a few chairs away from me. The first (and only) guy to catch my eye over here. Dark hair, full lips, chiseled features... hmmm, sexy. And apparently I had caught his! By the end of the night promises of Exciting Tallinn Tours had been made. I honestly didn't expect too much of it.

Our first date was a movie. Because this is the best way to see Tallinn, of course. Underworld, Part 2. Seriously. The funny dude took me to a vampire flick.

But it worked. Within 2 months we were engaged; one year, married; one year and nine months, mommy and daddy.

Mornings are still groggy, like they were in the early days. Now an angel with the biggest toothy grin wakes us up at the time we used to only just be going to bed. Nights out cavorting until sunrise have been replaced by nights in, curled up on the couch watching whichever new series has us hooked. But the laughs haven't changed. Or the off-key singing we both excel at :) We just do it at home now instead of the karaoke bar.

Life is a far cry from anything I had ever imagined. But as a wise person once said, ''Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans''.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Strawberry Shortcake

Mmmmm, the sweet bite of yummy, ripe, strawberries; bright red juice dribbling down your chin; warm sun twinkling overhead; crunchy, green grass underneath; fluttery, cool breeze all around.

What a perfect way to spend the day.

Friday, July 4, 2008

And the winner is...

BEANS! YAY for Beans! This is your prize! It's a water-colour of the Old Town done by a local artist. The bar I met hubby at is just around the corner on the right :)

But Beans has Estonian friends in London if I remember correctly. So she might have had a slight advantage.

Everybody got the one about lining up right. Am I the only person that thinks standing parallel to the counter is strange? Lord knows how many times I glared at people that I thought were skipping the line; those rude Estonians! Now I understand why they were looking at me like I had a stray booger.

As for your neighbour in the elevator. Well, I've tried each approach. The only one guaranteed to not result in that booger look is avoiding all eye contact. I have encountered the occasional friendly Estonian where the brief nod of acknowledgement has resulted in a brief nod back. Anybody that responded to a hello and a smile would turn out to be something else, but not Estonian. They are a quiet people. Silence in Golden in their world. I think my loud Trini-ness kinda scares some of them, especially considering some of them have never seen a real chocolate face before.

I see we have lots of drinkers in the house! But the first time I ever heard of sour milk for a hangover was here in Tallinn. They call it Keefir. I dunno about you, but the thought of anything sour when my tummy is already upside down just aint pleasant. And Tash, sushi is perfect anti-hurl food.

And how many times have I tried to hand cash or my card to a poor, bewildered cashier. Or stretched out expectantly for my change. Then I remember the little plastic tray.

Sour cream in Potato Salad. And in a lot of other salads too. They really dig the sour thing. Hubby thinks I am weird for using mayo. I had to make him google potato salad recipes to prove that the rest of the world uses mayo. He still thinks I'm weird. And that the ambiguous white sauce... turns out its a mayo / sour cream combo. But they don't use it with the tater salad.

So that's it for your Tallinn 101 today :)

I'm off to papa-in-law in the country in the mornin'. See ya on Monday :)

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

What's wrong??

Seriously?? Only 2 contestants??? Boo hoo. Are the questions too hard? My prize lame? No, it can't be that... I don't even know what it is yet. Did my joke scare everybody away??


We shall see what happens by tomorrow.

Nan, Tash, I know you are grinding your teeth in fevered anticipation. Just a few more hours, mm-kay!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Its Time for Tallinn Trivia!

Its Tuesday in Tallinn... again. This happens fairly often, like once a week or so. Kyah kyah kyah... lame.

So, to honour the city that I now call home, I've concocted a quiz! Dust off those thinking caps, but outside, please. I've swiffered the floor 3 times already today.

He (or she) who hath the most rightest answers winneth a prize!! Something Estonian, obviously. I'll let you know when I decide what it is. And I'll try to make it not quite as lame as my headlining act / joke, I promise.

Okaaaaaay. Ready, setty, GO!

1. When at one of Tallinn's very few-and-far-between fast-food joints, like Mc Donalds for instance, do you line up to pay for your grub:
a) parallel to the counter
b) perpendicular to the counter
c) What line??? The technology is so super duper amazing that you never have to line up!

2. As you enter the elevator at the mall you see someone who looks familiar. Wait a minute... she lives in your building, you've seen each other around before! You:
a) Smile, say hello and make polite conversation.
b) Avoid eye contact at all costs. Studiously staring at the floor is the best option.
c) Give a brief nod of acknowledgement but say nothing.

3. The best remedy for that horrendous hangover on a Saturday morning is:
a) the hair of the dog
b) a big glass of sour milk
c) cold, bubbly 7-Up
d) sushi

4. You go back at McDonalds, because the Big Mac you ordered was swimming in mayo and it all fell to the floor on the first bite. You order another one, this time without any mayo, and then:
a) Hand the cash to the cashier and wait for your change.
b) Hand over your debit / credit card. This is Tallinn after all, and nobody uses cash.
c) Place the money in the little plastic tray. You never hand over cash directly.

5. The main ingredient in Potato Salad (other than the potatoes obviously) is:
a) Mayo
b) Sour cream
c) That ambiguous white sauce that they serve with everything.

TA DAAA! That's it! May the best wo/man win!!