...or when Peanut and Adi collide. Same thing.
3 year old Peanut and her cousin, 2 year old Adi have spent the last few days in close quarters, for the first time in their lives.
It's been quite an experience 'Bringing Up Adi' ( Heh heh, Parul) for the last week while the rest of the family has been in Jaipur. Apart from the joy of having 4 small children in the house, all of whom have been merrily reinfecting each other with their colds and runny noses, it's been a challenge keeping the peace between Peanut and Adi. I handled it very well, though.
I just quietly shut the door to my bedroom and let them fight it out.
Soon, though, both of them discovered how to work the handle and would barge in, complaining about each other not sharing a toy. Peanut was the bigger complainer, although she was also occasionally elbowing him aside and taking things away from him. Yesterday, she walked in and informed me 'Adi tried to snatch this hat from me'. I looked at the hat in her hands and did a double take.
I told her 'But I gave this hat to Adi - why did YOU snatch it from him?'
She said angelically 'I didn't snatch it. I only it took it from him'.
It's been really amazing to see them fighting like two furious tiger cubs one minute, and then walking around hand in hand like the best of friends one minute later, kissing each other and hugging affectionately. Peanut has really enjoyed his company overall, even though she has got the worst of most physical fights. It seems to have made her less of a crybaby overall, and it's clear she enjoys having someone close to her age around.
Some of their fights have been most amusing to watch. Adi tends to walk up to Peanut and inform her 'Aap thanda-thanda ho'.
Peanut responds with some heat 'Nahin. Main thanda-thanda nahin hoon'.
Adi takes offense to this rejoinder and shouts 'Haan! Aap thanda-thanda ho'.
This continues for a while and eventually comes to blows. I tried to interject a couple of times saying that everybody was the exactly correct temperature that they needed to be, but neither of them listened to me.
When on better terms, they've been going to the park together - occasionally with the K, other times with me - and since they look rather alike and are both very cute small kids, they get attention from others. Someone even asked the K 'Are they twin brothers!'. Ha ha.
I took them to the mall the other day, and a lady asked me 'Are they both yours?' with some surprise. Rather than explain things to her, I just said yes. Why not? I bought the two of them some bubbles, and they couldn't wait to get home and play with them. It brought me back to the days when nothing made me happier than just blowing bubbles and running around trying to burst them. Ah, childhood ( she sighed nostaligically).
When I come home from work, Adi is the first person at the door. I hear him go 'Taun Aaya' ( he has the cutest little lisp). And then as the door opens and he sees me, he goes delightedly, 'It's Chacheee!'
The three of us have been baking chocolate cakes together every few days. I can bake a cake in under half an hour but when they ''help'' me, it takes longer. They insist on doing everything and end up spilling a lot, but it's been fun. Also, even though the cakes turn out nicely, they seem to now prefer the process of baking it over eating it. Today both of them came to me and said they wanted to bake a cake. Adi said 'Talo, Chachee, Cake Banaye'. I pointed out that they still hadn't finished even half of the last cake but they didn't appreciate the logic.
At the park, the two of them play mostly on the slides. Peanut climbs up to the top and says 'Mama!' Adi follows along and also shouts at me 'Mama, Mama!' I wave at the two of them and they slide down one by one - Peanut whizzing down fast and ladylike, Adi just flopping down almost horizontally, landing flat on his back in the mud each time. They enjoy playing in the mud too, digging with sticks and dirtying each other completely.
They are strangely affectionate with each other at times. Today Adi sat down on Peanut's lap. They've been patting each other to sleep at bedtime - eventually abandoning the exercise to go and play together at almost midnight, much to my chagrin. All in all, it's been really great having tiny little Adi around and we're going to miss him a lot when he leaves next week.
Also, I was getting rather smug when he started calling me 'Mama'.
Except that Peanut now calls me Chachi.