Yesterday evening, we ventured out for the monthly grocery shopping to my favourite D-mart. I did notice that the sky had become a threatening grey and there was thunder rolling some distance away, so I (luckily) remembered to take in the laundry.
By the time the kids, me, husband, last additions to grocery list after frantically opening and shutting drawers and kitchen cabinets, water bottle, umbrellas, were heading to the lift, it was quite near pitch black. The three minutes in the lift later, it was pouring and husband volunteered to bring the car to us.
Out on the highway, lightning flashed, thunder cracked and traffic was slow. There was an eerie yellow haze beyond the hills lining one side and palm trees bending to half their height in the strong gusts of wind on the other. Again, I had forgotten to carry my camera!
I cringed, not because I missed a splendid photo opportunity - the little box of assorted biscuits was back at home, right next to my wallet on the dining table, where I'd put them both down before I took a large gulp of water straight out of a bottle.
I must, at this point, make it clear to dear readers creasing their brows and wondering why, I didn't just carry a bag. Well, D-marts in Mumbai and suburbs have this policy of making you put your handbag in another green duffel tote and sealing it. The said green tote is officially unsealed at the billing counter - best bet against shop lifters, I have been told.
Also, adding that this little ritual took some getting used to, for readers now staring in disbelief. So, I just carried my wallet, which is not put in another green (official D-mart colour) wallet, rather than have a bag (for however little a time) used by many hanging by my shoulder.
So, now, we were almost there and had to park already! Looked like everyone else had our brilliant plan of shopping for long list of grocery in the middle of the month to beat the crowds, sigh! It was still raining, water running down the car windows in rivulets.
Darling husband peered out and decided it was best for four-year-old-just- recovering-from-a- ferocious-viral-fever (not H1N1) and two-year-old-just-about-to-catch-the-same-virus-from-sister to stay in the car rather than brave the two blocks to store in the pouring rivers of rain.
I told him, in the sweetest voice I have, about the wallet resting at home and he gave me a look, that will not restore him to darling husband status for a long time. There wasn't an ATM nearby, actually never when you need cash and fast. Tired of looking at vipers swishing viciously at the water under the street light made the little one cry.
Not wanting to risk another 'look' if I volunteered information of a little box of biscuits absolutely vital now, I sighed and said we would come another day. As I swung with inertia at the sharp u-turn, I didn't know what was worse - taking a 35 minute drive in the rain, thunder, lightning to the grocery store or turning back, after having braved the unexpected rain storm , for fear the kids would not last the shopping session without throwing hunger tantrums.
Pfft, I sat staring at the wet roads whizzing by, occassionally glaring at husband, who made a quick call to a friend and got directions to another D-mart with basement parking. I could say, he was trying his best to become the darling once again!
Well, the grocery shopping done, we each had a cup of steamed corn, from a vendor down the road, in the car to take care of hunger pangs and drove back leisurely home, in the peace after the storm...