The Dr. Froggy trip is set for two weeks from today.
In the mean time my niece is turning one and I am back in Minnesota for her birthday party, an exceptionally stunning production for a rug rat who will have no recollection of this event, other than photos.
In addition to several dozen guests, some catered delights, decorations and cake, Mom has spent several days cooking her signature entrees like samosas and paneer. One by one I load slow cookers into the back of the car and then pile in the serving platters, utensils and chafing dishes. I dash back in the house and Dad sits in the family room, while Mom pulls on her jacket. Because the birthday party is at Desi Brother’s place I am not sure what Dad is doing.
“Are you coming?” I ask Dad. “You’ll need your coat. It’s cold outside.” “Have your brother come get me in a couple of hours…I'm still tired from India,” Dad says. Okay, I understand jetlag is tough, but the dude came back from India when I did, a week ago!
And yes, sure Dad is older than me, getting older every day, we are all. So perhaps his bounce back rate is slowing down, too. But my brother has a house soon to be filled with guests; I doubt he has all day to cater to Dad. “India was tough, too tough,” Dad says. “There is nothing to eat in that stupid country. Nobody cooks like your Mom. Nothing works in that stupid country. And those people are stupid. Everything is stupid…” he says.
I warned him not to open a Delhi office. India may have changed, but it won’t run like America, I cautioned. But you cannot make entrepreneurs understand reason when it comes to their dreams. Dad always says if you give people enough rope they eventually hang themselves and I really hope this Indian endeavor does not become his hanging. This is why I wish he hadn’t opened the Delhi office.
Mom motions me to move for the door and I do. She follows me out and I settle her into the car. I pull the car down the driveway, onto the county road and north onto Silver Lake Road. We are just passing Wal-Mart and Mom says, “Daddy doesn’t want to ruin the birthday party, but his sister died this morning. That is why he’s in that mood,” Mom says. “But he doesn’t want to tell your brother until after the party. So you have to keep quiet."
Really? I have to keep secrets from my own brother? Of course I would never ruin his daughter's birthday party. But why is the party ruined for me? Can’t I just come to Minnesota and relax? Why do I have to bear all the burdens in this family?