Category: Laughs

Winter Olympics through her eyes

– Skiing, snowboarding, ice racing are all good but Ice dancing is what catches our fancy. Again men don’t count, it is all about the ladies.

– Their dresses are so special: jewels, sparkles, treasures!

– We can see their underwear every time they turn, bend, jump. he he he

– Do they not feel cold on the ice?

– How do they get so much ice in one place?

– How do they put the Olympic symbol and colors through the ice?

– Oh look at her going round and round in circles. Oh so pretty!

– Why do some people fall during jumps?

– Which country is she from?

– Oh Russia, she drove here? The rest took the airplane!

– Can you record it for us? Where the girls dance? Please?

The best part

We had a parade in town and I asked Buzz if she wanted to go. Super excited, she nodded.

Then came the rules:
– It will be very loud, will you get upset?
– It will be a long wait, will you keep asking how much longer?
– It will be very cold, will you cry over that?

‘No’, she said with every rule.

Next morning we bundled her in her warmest clothes, put hand warmers, food and water in our backpack and left for the Parade.

It was indeed loud, the wait oh so long and so so so cold. Buzz kept her word for most parts. There were a few moments about being cold, till she got the hand warmers warming her up. There were a few tears about the parade not starting after a long wait, especially when the marching band stood in front of us doing nothing for a long long time. #JoysOfStandingRightAtTheStartOfTheParade

Then the police came atop horses, which distracted Buzz for a long while. The horses were smelly and so tall if anyone cares to know Buzz’s reaction to them.

Wait wait wait, finally ended with the marching band starting their walk. The main attractions of the parade came down. There was cheering, screaming, waving, clapping, smiling from Buzz while she had the best seat in town – atop D’s shoulders.

When all was done, and we walked back to our car, we asked her what her favorite part was.

The horsy pooped on the road!

The answer has been consistent since, to all enquires. #Duh #WeCouldHaveTakenHerToAnAnimalFarmInstead

My Dil goes hmmm

Chalte chale jindagi..
kabhi yoin he mud jati hei.
Jaate jaate..
koyi nayi si raah dikhla jati hei.

I walk around these days with a sense of joy. The day to day life remains but I don’t feel weighed down by it. Don’t know what changed, was it the family, is it the growing kids? I don’t know, but with change of the year, I have stepped in to a new part of my life. I feel light, I feel buoyant, I feel happy.

Wo gunjati hansi.
wo chote chote pal..
Wo gungunati baatein..
wo khushiyaan har pal

The kids had a blast together. Potty jokes where at their funniest. A bear, with cotton coming out of the back seams, was named Poo bear. Pooka is the new name for errrmmm.. fart. Every toy was made to sit on the pot, sounds made, eeewww shrieked and giggles plenty. Couple of hour long trips went arguing over which part of the pot was whose.

Then there was the first time on skies. The falling, the getting up, the being together in it all. And the best part about the whole ski class – hot chocolate. Cold, snow, bulky clothes – every thing was endured without a complain because there was that special cup of steaming hot coco at the end. There was standing on Paa’s skis, holding on to the poles, pretending to do all the work while Paa propelled then around Bunny slopes.

There was playing with Nana/Dada (which ever kid called him by whatever name), there was confusion over how he could be Nana and Dada at the same time, there was demands for books to be read, there was mastiyaan his style, there was getting away with asking for candy because he did not know the rules, there was snuggling in the blanket with him, there was calling dibs over who gets to sleep in the bed next to his. Indulgence has its own fun, after all.

Laakoin sawal..
sawaloin mein uljhe se jawaab.
Pakdo, chode, dhoondo..
sang mein peerote raho khawaab.

Buzz and her questions get more complicated every day. “Why is the rainbow shy?”, she asks. “How can you build a column under water without water running it over?”, comes next. “Why does the sky change color?” “So does water?” “What is reflection?” “Why do flowers not grow in winter?” “Why do Cherry Blossoms come for such a short time?” “Why is Mango seed so big while watermelon’s so small?” “Where are the strawberry seeds?” “Why can’t a car fly?” “Why does bad man hurt someone when he knows hurting is bad?” “Why do we have to sleep? It is so boring.” “Why are you not going to work today? We need money to go to India.” “My friend said, doctor cuts Mommy’s stomach to get the baby out. Why does the doctor want to hurt Mommy?” “Did the doctor cut your stomach to get me out?” “How did I get inside your stomach, Mumma?”

They never end. And I get better at creative answering every single day. It is a constant balance of telling the truth, but just enough that she would actually understand.

Heartbreaking as it is, homework is part of our daily life now. It comes every Monday and is due the next week. My little baby can read small small books on her own. ‘Jack and Jill and big dog Bill went up the hill’, she reads to me and my heart breaks in to small little pieces. I love reading books to the two of them. Soon that will be gone, I cry. And just when I am at the doorstep of despair, she snuggles up in my lap, hands me a book and says, “Read to me Mumma.”

She comes stands next to me and puts her hand on her head and then a little above my stomach. “I am this tall, Mumma. When I am 7, I will come up to your shoulders and then by 10 I will be taller than you.” I hug her tight and tell, not quite by 10 but by 13 for sure. It is all so amusing, she laughs and I laugh right alongside her.

“Can I sit in your lap, Mumma?”, she asks.
“Always!”, she parrots right along with me.
Hugs, kisses, I Love yous – my world is full of them. They come and they come all the time and I gather them all up, holding them close. And as we sit, holding on tight, she weaves her dreams about the future – her house right next doors to ours, how she will drive me around and cook for me, our sharing of clothes. College, work, her little dreams, so fun to hear, so very precious.

Chanchal gudiya..
uthti, baithti, naachti, gaati.
Chamkti aankein..
meeloin lambi baatein, sada khilkhilati.

Bugz, my little one, finally has a perfect name. Pataka, I call her and she gleefully smiles and says, “Me pataka.” Forever moving, never in one place, not predictable, anything can set her off – that is her, Pataka. Almost at the end of the day, when I am tired, she loves to sit on my lap, but sitting for her means sitting and getting off every 30 seconds. 10 mins in to it, I feel like I have been through the spin cycle of my washing machine. I hold her, I let her go, I pull her up, I help her down, I give her a blanket, I take off the blanket, I read to her, I give her milk, I keep them aside, I start over.

‘Me’ and ‘this’ are her favorite words. ‘Me’ for herself and ‘this’ for everyone else. Extra emphasis means saying these words twice. “Me me give dudhu.” “This this keep here.” The ‘r’ and ‘l’ sounds are coming to her but she still bungles them up, but ‘m’ and ‘n’ get interchanged all the time. Which is to say, ‘name’ becomes ‘mane’ in no time. Everyone names she screams out loud, but ask her Mumma’s name and she gives a shy smile and says “Me Mumma.”

My favorite thing to ask her is if something is ‘achha’ or ‘ganda’ (good or bad).
Didi?
Didi achha!
Didi thoda (little) achha, jyaada (a lot) achha?
Didi jada achha!
Bugz?
Me achha!
thoda accha, jyaada achha?
Me no jada achha, me thoda accha

Always without a fail and then when I look at her in mock horror, she giggles, literal he he he giggles and screams, “Me jada achha!”

Whatever Didi does, she has to do. Whatever Didi wants, she wants. Every toy is snatched, every action is copied, much to Didi’s dismay. When Didi sits with her homework, Bugz sits to draw circles in her book. She watches like a hawk as I get Didi ready after her bath and the minute Didi gets up she comes running to sit in my lap. If Didi wears her stockings, she has to wear hers. Party shoes are soon to follow and showed off to any and everyone. If Didi gets her hair in two ponytails, dare you not make two choti for her. Didi gives two kisses to Mumma, she will give double that amount. Not that Mumma is complaining at all!

Loud, assertive, lover of music, crazy about dancing, stickler for schedule, stubborn, affectionate, quick to anger, utterly adorable with kissable cheeks – that is her.

“This Didi me ka”, she tells us and we all agree without any argument. Who has the energy to argue, I ask?

Action are louder than words

Bugz took her own time to talk. There was no forcing her, no hurrying her. Any request to say something was met with only one word, ‘no’ (yes, that one she learned very early). Then randomly she would say something and it would be near perfect pronunciation. There was no made up words Buzz style. This is not to say she did not have her quirks.

Give her something and ask her, ‘what do you say Bugz?’

‘Wacome’, was her reply.

The day she actually said, ‘Thankoo’, my heart broke a little.

She has a lot of words now. She talks constantly in-fact, trying out new words and stringing them in sentences. But there are some things where actions are still more appropriate.

Bugz and I were at her doctor’s office. While we waited in the room for the doctor to come we heard a baby crying in the room next to ours. Bugz looked up from her game and said,

Baby aaaiii wain aaaiii wain *actual crying noise*

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While out in the park we saw a mother struggle with her toddler kid. The mother wanted to leave, the kid wanted to continue playing. Bugz looked on with a lot of interest and then turned to me,

Baby wain wain..Mumma daant *tapping her hand on her cheek*

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Bugz in my lap just after I came back home in the evening, I asked her what she did all day

Me Anyan (the boy next door) car brr brr brr drive *all the while pretending to hold the steering wheel in her hand*

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‘What are you doing Bugz’, I ask her as I see her playing in her crib.

Bhoo bhoo nini *pushing a blanket on her stuffed dog*
Baby nini *pushing a blanket on her doll*
Me nini *pulling the blanket on herself and shutting her eyes tight*

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Mumma Mumma didi..

she shouted as she comes to find me. ‘What happened to didi’, I ask in a worried voice

Didi *pretends to pick up water and pour it over her head*

‘Aah didi nahie nahie’, I ask her. A nod, a huge smile and she walks away to play in the water while didi takes her bath.

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The garage door opens and she runs downstairs.

Papa mumma …… me no … phoo phoo

‘Mumma is making roti. Bugz no touch. Very hot’, comes D’s voice and a laughing sound from the little one

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‘Bugz what did you do over the weekend’, asked her nanny on Monday.

Aunty me light..phutak phutak.. *using her hands to show all around her*

‘You burst crackers for Diwali?’, aunty asks. She nods, smiles and says,

HaaappyDiaai Aunty

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The girl who cried wolf

Dear Bugz,

‘We parented our elder one as we wanted to. The younger one gets herself parented the way she wants to’, said a friend to me and I was stuck by how true that statement was for our family. Rules, instructions, discipline are for other people. They have nothing to do with you and no one can make you do anything you don’t want to. ‘Buzz clean up your toys’, I tell you. You look at me, smile, shrug and walk away. You want to go out, I keep telling you ‘finish your food and you can’, but you are set on going outside and nothing can move you. You run downstairs, you try to put on your shoes, you make so much noise that it is either give in or get a headache.

Your stubbornness and your ability to bring the house down with your screams, unbeatable combination I tell you. You are the first to snatch toys that you want to play with but if anyone so much as touched one of your toys, even when you are not playing with them, is greeted with a loud shout ‘No’ from you. ‘Book, book’, you scream and sit happily as I read to you, but the minute you lose interest, the noise you make and jumping around you do makes it almost impossible to finish reading the book for others who are listening. You love your ‘Pata’ (pasta) but others in the house who love pasta as much try even taking a bite out off of your plate, you scream and you scream.

You are also a stickler for schedule. If something in done a certain way once, it has to be done the same way always. Every morning I give Didi and you your gummy bear multi-vitamins. You used to get one of those while Didi got more. As you grew a little old your dosage went up to two and little one can I tell you how much time and effort it took me to get you to have two of those. And this is when you love gummy bears and look forward to them every day. You kept screaming ‘One, no two gum’, and handing the other one to either Didi or me. Cut to few days later, I tried giving you only one to see your reaction and you were on the ground screaming till you got your two ‘gum’.

You are becoming very independent these days. You want to do everything yourself. ‘Aape’ is your favorite word after ‘Me’. Brush, clothes, shoes, food – everything is met with ‘aape’ from your side. You need no help, till you need help but by then you are so frustrated that you are kicking and screaming all around.

Your choices are very distinct and you don’t shy away from voicing those. Jeans are your clothing of choice. If there is one in your closet then there is no wearing anything else for you. And if there is the one with the yellow flower at the bottom, dare anyone keep you away from wearing that one. ‘Flowaa pant’, you smile after you have it on and what a sight that is. The other piece of clothing that you love are the stockings. Pants and socks in one go and more importantly it signifies that you are going outside; what is not to love! And then no trip outside the house is complete without a trip to the park. How dare we return home without taking you to the park?

As I said, scream and shout are your weapons but when all that fails, you have your brahma-astra. Cry a little – no response. Scream – no response. Run around screaming – no response. Cough – no response. Throw up – there you go, now pay attention. Given all the acid reflux issues you had as a kid, may be throwing up is your natural response when you are too upset but you have learned over time that it gets you complete and utter focus from everyone around, so now a lot of times you force the issue. You actually start fake coughing, which turns in to true coughing and then comes the main deal. How are poor parents supposed to cope with something like that? But then you get what you want and are seen smiling a few minutes later.

There are moments aplenty when we are pure frustrated, at our wits end, not knowing what to do. Do you sense that too? Do you realize that you went too far? I sometimes feel that you do, because you come running, hands on your cheek and say, ‘Sooiieee! Mumma me sooiiee. Me acchaa’. You shower us with kisses and my personal favorite when you touch your cheek to mine and say ‘puchak’, not the sound but the word. Yes sweetheart you acchaa, you are good and we are good.

You have this big loud laugh, that makes everyone around laugh. You have your ‘oh’ when something happy happens around you, that makes everyone around you smile. You have your ‘me’ – ‘me mumma’, ‘me papa’, ‘me didi’, ‘me aunty’, that makes everyone around you agree with you.

You love to talk and want to talk in long sentences, but they don’t come easily to you. So you make your own way through them. ‘Me car, kldasjlk jklsdajksad jkdsajdsa jjlkasduu, mumma drive’, is how your regular sentence goes. You ensure that we pay full attention to what you are saying, pick up only the relevant words and reform the sentence to figure out what you are trying to say. And any delay in understanding and replying back is not met well from your side.

You love to be held, you can’t stay in a place for more than a couple of seconds. You love books, any more than a couple of seconds on any page is not acceptable. You love to go to the park, you don’t stay on any swing/slide for more than a few minutes. You cry and throw a tantrum, you are very quick to say sorry. You want to do everything your way, you copy Didi in everything she does. You don’t listen when I ask you to pick up your toys, you are the first one to come and help me when I empty the dishwasher. You are stubborn to the core, you get distracted easily. You are uniquely you and that is what makes you so special. A smile when things go your way. For everything else there is a scream!

We, your parents, get angry and frustrated and then turn in to a puddle of mush, all in a matter of seconds. This is you sweetheart, all you. And that is what I wish for you always – stay healthy, stay happy, stay you.

Loads of love,
-Maa

leaving you with your current favorite song or as you call it ‘Tiggge gana’

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4Z_Hw0WPso%5D

They came, we had fun, they left

One particularly depressing day, I picked up my phone and called them. The minute they answered, I went on a rant, “It is summer, the kids are out of school, why can’t you come over, even if it for a few days”. The two of them totally shocked, calmed me down and asked me what was up. Like a petulant child, I kept repeating, “Just come”.

Plans were made, tickets were booked and days counted. Sheets were washed, beds were made and towels in place. The day of, Buzz asked me why there were not here yet. I explained that she had to go to sleep and she would wake up to them in the house. The innocence that she is wanted to go to bed at 7:00 itself. D left just as I was putting the kids to bed and then the wait started again. It took forever for the clock to strike 10:07 and the garage door finally opened and I rushed down to fall in their arms and hold on tight.

Laughs, talks, dinner and it was time to catch some sleep. Somewhere in the middle of the night Bugz got up and started screaming, “Mumma” and would not stop. Groggily I walked in to her room, to see her pointing to *her* sleeping and saying “Kon?” (who). Soon *her* and Buzz where up too and giggling excitedly. Love, sweet words, angry words, big eyes – all were used to finally get all three of them back to sleep.

6:00 in the morning saw the same story repeated and I gave up on any further sleep. Bugz was re-introduced to big didi. And then with the rest of the family as they woke up.

Once Bugz got to know them, big didi became Didi2 while Buzz stayed Didi. Mama was Papa. “Whose papa Bugz?”, came back with a prompt “Didi2”. Similarly Mami became Mumma and the adults were thoroughly confused every time she called out, “Mumma/Papa”, which means there was increasingly frustrated Bugz pulling at someone’s shirt. Bhaiya had to make do with finger points and “enh”, poor little baby.

There was showing off of the cousins at school, trips to various parks, amazing food, picnics, splashing around in the lakes, ferry rides and long drives. There was teasing, fights, tears, time outs and making up.

There was a night of sitting and remembering, sharing of worries, re-living the horrible months, missing Maa like crazy, tears, holding on, re-assurances, opening of private feelings, reminiscing childhood days, laughs, promises, care – all soaked in so much love.

There were 5 rakhees made and tied to the utter confusion of 4 little munchkins. There were fights over colors and frustration about not knowing how to tie them. There were huge smiles on all four faces once the rakhee were in place. There were showing off of little wrists.

There were the hugs good bye and as they left, I walked around the house as a lost soul. A week since they left and the house still feels empty. There are art projects that the kids did to be collected and put away. There are socks and T-shirts and books to be found in obscure corners of the house, that I gather and keep aside for the next trip.

Bhaiya and A – I miss you so very much.
Kids – Can’t wait to hold you all over again.
December – Please come quick.

She is like this wonly..

Bugz, my little baby is growing up and as she does, her big personality within her little body is coming out in full force.

As we stand at the top of a ragging waterfall she runs towards it because all she sees is water and water only means one thing, swimming. As we hold on to her tight, she kicks and screams, angry at the idiots (us) who don’t understand the simplest of things.

The word swimming/swimsuit are met with only one reaction. Her tugging at her clothes, to get out of them and to get her swimsuit on. Once at the pool, who has the time to wait for parents, these adults take too much time getting in. She jumps right in and by the time parents franticly get in, she has drunk half the water in the pool.

Fiercely independent, she wants to do every thing on her own. Clothes, food, water, poo, pee. Try doing something for her that she wants to do and you will be met with anger as she taps her chest with her hand as she explains that the task is for her to do.

To balance all the ‘do self’ attitude comes the need to be held. In the middle of her games, she suddenly comes running, climbs on our lap facing us, one leg on each side, her head on our chest and hands holding us tight. If the gesture is not met with a tight hug in return, she demands her right. Thus we sit minutes on end, holding each other.

Refuse to do something her way and she is seen crying at the top of her lungs, running in circles, laying on the floor. Let her go on for a few minutes and she quickly figures out it is of no use. She runs back for her hug, and then moves on the next big thing.

Ask her to say anything new and she responds with a ‘no’. Keep saying the same word every now and then and she will say it all on her own a few days later, almost perfect in her pronunciation. There is thyankee (thank you), gum (gummy bear), bhoo bhoo (dog sound), key, shoe, car, tuck (truck), meme (herself), aaanty (aunty), ungle (uncle), igg (egg), bead (bread), dudhu (milk), ninoo (sleep) and so many more.

Her favorite sentence has to have ‘Poo’ in them. ‘Mumma Poo’, ‘Papa Poo’, ‘Didi Poo’, ‘BhooBhoo Poo’, ‘BhooBhoo Car Poo’, ‘Meme Poo’. There is a running commentary in our house anytime anyone goes does their business and is announced at full volume till someone acknowledges what she is saying.

There is no need to teach her any of the big transitional things. She looks at others, tries them out and learns all on her own. She potty trained herself. She would tell me ‘poo’ (pee and poo are the same for her), I would check her diaper and find them empty, so I started putting her on the pot. Now she sometimes even gets up in the middle of the night to scream, ‘POO, POO, POO’ till one of us wakes up and takes her to the bathroom.

Similarly she taught herself to drink from a glass. She says, ‘Pati’ (pani), takes the glass from our hand, we say ‘munh band’ (close your mouth), immediately she does. And we repeat with every sip she drinks.

Her counting starts with two, because well everyone else says one, and ends with thee (three). We tell her ‘Bugz one kissy de de’ as we kiss her cheek. She moves her other cheek towards us and says, ‘two’. As we kiss her again she happily says, ‘thee’. And we kiss her three. Our repeating three only gets, ‘done’ in return.

She has the loudest, hurt your eardrums, gives you a headache, scream. She has the happiest, melt your heart, make you laugh along, laugh. Stubborn, happy, tantrum throwing, doing things her way, independent, demanding love – this is our Bugz.

Hide and Seek

Sometime last month we went camping with friends and the kids got introduced to the game that marks all of our childhood – Hide and Seek. While the adults took care of setting up the tents and getting the meal ready, the kids hid behind trees and cars and were laughing all the time.

Yesterday after the evening meal was done and D and I had crashed on the couch, Buzz smiled and asked, “Can we play hide and seek, Mumma?”.

“Sure, go hide”, I told her and off she ran.

Too tired to get up (also knowing where Buzz was hiding) I send Bugz to find her. “Go Bugz, find Didi”, and off she was. We knew Buzz was spotted by Bugz’ lough laugh and Buzz’s shriek.

As the came to us with smiles on their faces, I told Bugz it was her turn to hide. Bugz turned around, ran and hid in the exact same place as Buzz. Buzz found her with no issues at all.

The two of them took turns a couple of times when D said, “my turn, now both of you find me.” I entertained the kids while D found a place to hide. The three of us laughed and giggled and then the kids were off finding Papa. I could hear calls of “Papa”, “Bugz go look there” and then loud laughs as Papa was found.

It was Papa’s turn to seek and the kids scrambled around to hide. Once D was done finding the kids, since all he needed to do was follow the giggles, Buzz asked “where is Mumma?”. Oh no! Mumma was hiding too and Papa had to now really work on his seeking skills.

We hid, we searched, we found. Every door, closet, corner in the house was searched. We laughed, clapped, jumped.

Simple childhood game, continues to give so much joy. Simple childhood game, still keeps us entertained. Simple childhood game, now has new additions to its players list.

Hat..bat..rat

Buzz learned about rhyming words a couple of months back and finding rhyming words for everything is her latest game. Most of the time it is about substituting the starting letter randomly to see if it forms a word.

If asked what rhymes with say ‘Book’, her first instinct is to say ‘Shook’.

*digression* Proud mother moment that she has taken the Hindi lesson so well. Kaam – Waam, Roti – Shoti, Book – Shook *end digression*

Sometimes what she comes up with is indeed a word and sometimes it is not. If it is not a word, I tell her it is not and she goes on to think of another word.

Yesterday as we were at the same game she came up with

Duck

Thought and thought and said it rhymes with

*uck

Not hearing any response from me, she looked at me and asked

Yeah word hai kya Mumma? (Is it a word Mumma?)

I try and not lie to the kids no matter how difficult the issue is but saying yes meant answering the next question

What does it mean Mumma?

I quickly changed the topic. Things kids can come up with are beyond anything a grown adult mind can comprehend. Apparently rhyming words are also not landmine free!!!

Chotta bandar..nakalchi bandar..

She spies the kiddy purse someone gifted Buzz on table and points to it.

Pur..pur

Purse? I ask her and she nods her head in affirmative, as she takes it from my hand.

Baaayyee!

she says as she waves her hand.

Khaan jaa rahi hei Bugz?

I ask aloud.

Baar

comes her reply. Baahar (outside)?, I say.

She gives me a big smile, lets the purse hang from her elbow, turns around and walks out of the room.

A couple of seconds later she is back in the room, purse held in palm of her hand and a big wave.

Haaayyyeee!

As I respond with ‘Hi, Bugz’, she laughs out loud and keeps the purse back on the table.

My every morning and every evening routine enacted perfectly without much words spoken and no prompting. This continues in the exact same way for numerous re-takes for the next 10 mins.

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As I get the two of them ready for bed, Buzz plays her usual game – whispered secrets. She whispers random things in my ear, I make funny faces, we laugh as Buzz pretends to fall on her bed.

As soon as Buzz is on her bed, Bugz comes up to me, puts her mouth to my ear, holds still for a couple of seconds and climbs on to the bed alongside Buzz. My amazement shows on my face and she falls on the bed laughing.

The two of them keep taking turns; one with words, the other without.

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My chotta sa bandar is becoming a true nakalchi bandar.