When in New Delhi

The Next Family

By: Kerrie Olejarz

We were excited yet numb; the reality of this finally happening was so huge that I think we both shut it down emotionally.  Monday and Tuesday zipped by and it was finally time to fly!  We got to the airport with plenty of time to spare.  Upon checking our luggage we found out that we had unlimited pieces available at no charge! Dagnabbit!  Regardless, our bags got checked and we were on our way via Brussels.  The flights were uneventful, just long.  We watched a movie or two and before we knew it… were landing in New Delhi.

We did the long walk to immigration and then gathered our bags and headed to duty-free.  We grabbed the four bottles of booze for Rajesh and headed to the exit.  Rajesh had said he would meet us at pillar number ten so we made our way to there.  And, we waited, and waited, and waited.  Eventually Mark went walking around to see if he could find Rajesh and our car and sure enough, it was no where near pillar ten!  We got everything loaded into the car, including the four bottles of booze which made Rajesh smile.  He was very welcoming to us and got us into GK1 very quickly.  He made a pit stop at M Block market for us to grab something to eat.  It was after 11 pm so we were limited to Pizza Hut.

The B&B was literally two minutes from the market so we quickly arrived and got settled into our room.  As we ate our pizza and sipped our Pepsi I thought I saw a mouse running through the room.  I figured I was just tired and seeing things.  Mark decided to take a quick shower to freshen up and while he did this, I confirmed: we had a roommate, a tiny little mouse, who was quite clever in making his way around.  I told Mark but we were so tired we couldn’t care less.  I finally got our wireless set up and opened email to find that Sumita had a scan while we travelled and to our shock they discovered a single nuchal loop!  What does this mean in lay terms? Cord wrapped around baby’s neck.  The note with the email said that there would be another scan early next week to see what was happening and we would decide from there what the next steps would be.  This was a scary discovery for us, but we knew the doctors would not let the baby be at any risk, and babies go through late parts of the pregnancy like this and it is not discovered until delivery.

Soon after we fell into bed like cement being poured into a foundation.  We crashed hard and slept well.  We awoke after 5 hours’ sleep and made a few quick Skype calls.  I was dying for a coffee!  I brought coffee supplies but didn’t have any milk or cream.  I headed out to the common area to see if we could start breakfast, or at least get a splash of milk for my coffee.  The place was silent, the sun was bright yet the kitchen was dark.  I peeked into the kitchen and there, on the floor, were the two house boys sound asleep.  I felt bad to disturb them so I walked away.  Another hour went by, the boys were asleep, another hour, still sleeping!!  Finally around ten thirty they awoke. We found this odd that at a bed and breakfast the guys who provide breakfast slept so late! They awoke and were quickly in servant mode.

Their names were Rama, a young man who spoke decent English and Hariz, a much older gent who knew just a few words of English.  Hariz was the main cook and asked us in his limited English if we wanted coffee and an omelette and toast.  We were starving so this sounded great.  Rama started bringing out the breakfast supplies.  He displayed the side bar with glass jars containing all sorts of cereals.  Then he filled the lazy susan on the table with jams and butter for our toast. I looked at the cereal and told Mark not to eat it.  All the glass jars, so nicely displayed by Rama, were infested with some sort of flying gnat.  Yuck, no thanks!  Meanwhile, Hariz was in the kitchen and we could hear him whipping the eggs for the omelettes; so far so good!  Then, all of a sudden we heard a disturbing noise come from the kitchen -Hariz, bringing up, and spitting up phlegm!! Nauseating is not strong enough a word to describe it.  Within minutes he delivered us our omelettes and toast!   As disgusting as it all was, we decided to eat…when in India, do as they do right?

The food was actually good. After breakfast, we headed outside to what felt like a sauna.  It was a roaring 50 degrees Celcius, 122 Farenheit!  That decided that; we headed back into the room to contact the doctor and see what the next steps would be.  We were told that Sumita would have another scan on the 16th of August and if the cord was still around the neck we would discuss a c-section.   So, we had to wait.  We spent the next few days doing a little shopping at the smaller markets.  It was getting close to Independence Day in India and we were warned to avoid the large shopping centers due to potential terrorist attacks.  

Over the first few days we ate Pizza Hut, Subway, McDonalds and lots of Indian delights.  Our days started with the sounds of phlegm from the kitchen, mid-day we hung with two police officers who frequented the B&B and the evenings we spent on the rooftop patio.   Monday, Independence Day, came and Hariz made us the best potato roti ever! He served it with spicy pickle relish and coffee.  I spent time in the kitchen with him as he showed me the trick to making these yummy delights.  Despite the phlegm, the kitchen was spotless, and Hariz was very good at washing his hands.

Everything was closed for the holiday so we had a very quiet day.  We ended up grabbing a rickshaw and going to Delhi haat market where we purchased a beautiful sari for Sumita.  We were going to see her on Tuesday at the ultrasound and wanted to give her a gift of thanks.  While I tried on the saris the shop boy felt it appropriate to grab my boobs while posing for a picture!  I laughed pretty hard at being taken advantage of!  We ended up buying a beautiful maroon coloured sari with gold accents. Upon returning back to our room, I placed the sari in a gift bag for Sumita, and added in an envelope of cash.  We decided to stop and get her fresh flowers on the way to the ultrasound and had a card for her which we would ask one of Dr Shivani’s staff to write our words of love and thanks in Hindi for us.  

It was difficult to sleep, knowing we were going to see Sumita tomorrow and of course our baby, live on ultrasound.

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