The Prabhus made yettanother road trip this week, driving fourteen hours (not counting breaks) to Chicago for Maria and Michael’s wedding, with three-year-old it tow. Kiara is no longer so simple and tractable as to sing and sleep for the entire journey (as she did when she was two), so this time we caved and bought three movies (Cinderella, Mulan and “Aristoffcats”) for her to watch on the ice-pod, as she calls it. We also stopped on Wednesday the 11th at a motel for a few hours of sleep. On Thursday we reached Chicago in the afternoon, and had time to nap and bathe (thank God) before attending Maria’s roce.
The roce was held at Peter and Rita Noronha’s home. The bride and groom were both present, but other than that, it was a very traditional affair, complete with voyos, bridal and groomal finery and sorpotel. Kiara renewed her acquaintance with the baby-lovin’ Noronha family. The young Noronha girls (Tara, Tanya, Maya, Tina, Sonia, Shani, Jasmine and of course Maria herself) were looking as lovely as youth, health and overflowing spirits can make people look. Also in our midst were Ivan’s pine-tree sons, Rohan and Ryan. We had a lot of dancing and a lot of singing (unfortunately accompanied by mediocre me).
Friday found us wending our way Elmhurstward for lunch with Stevie and Sandy. They are excellent cooks! Also invited to lunch was Tara Noronha’s rambunctious pug Atticus, who was a bit over enthusiastic about Kiara.
On Saturday, the wedding mass was at noonish. The bride looked beautiful in a simple sari. All the young cousins on both sides did readings, and they all read very articulately. Aunts and Uncles collaborated to sing a blessing which was a surprise (and a very pleasant one) for the couple. Kiara slept through mass.
After mass we were invited to Gerard Aranha’s beautiful home for chaat etc. When we finished chaating with everyone we headed back to base camp (Gautam Shah's house) to sleep off our excesses.
Saturday night found us all in our wedding finery - Kiara in the obligatory pink frock, in which she felt – and danced - like a princess. Tara raised a wonderful toast, gently humorous and short – there were three or four short toasts, all of which were good.
Peter Noronha organized the bride’s father’s favorite song, “I’m Forever Blowing Bubbles”, to which the bride danced with her father, and all the children at the wedding were provided with soap bubbles to blow on the dancers! Kiara really enjoyed that.
There was a lot of dancing – the DJ took one look at the wedding guests and decided that it would be a bollywood evening – every second song was bhangra. Unfazed, we danced the night away.
We drove home on Sunday, and on Monday it was back to work for me, and back to school for Kiara. Kiara had a field trip to an orchard where the children got to pick apples and pumpkins. Also this week, they had an art workshop where a visiting artist did some fabulous collages with them.
Yesterday, Kiara’s best friend Grace called with two extra tickets to an orchestra performance. Kiara and I went. The afternoon started with an “instrument petting zoo” where the children got to touch and play all the instruments in the orchestra under the kindly supervision of the orchestra members. This was followed by the concert itself, where we took a musical tour from the baroque era to the modern age, with a very funny narrator who postured his way through baroque (powdered wig and all), sobbed his way through the romantics and then composed a very hilarious modern piece. Kiara thoroughly enjoyed the show and knew most of the music (they played very popular stuff, like the Four Seasons, the Valkyries and the Ratetsky March) so she sang along with the whole perfomance, to the amusement of an audience that was unusually tolerant because most of them had young children in tow.
And that’s all the news as of now.
Happy Birthday Nana Elsie, and love to you all!