So I’ve always had this huge complex that I never get Suraj any fantastic birthday gift that gets him all excited and speechless.
In my defense, shirts, walnut muffins and birthday kisses aren’t exactly gifts that fall in the aforementioned category And of course, thanks to my memory, my “complex” surfaces only the eve before his birthday, every year! And that his birthday falls on the almost month-end does not help! We’re both broke by then, and everyone else I know (from whom I could borrow money) would also be broke!
So, when I got Pumbaa and the awesome Canon DSLR on my last birthday, I had my mind set on getting him something fab. Mine is on 2 Nov, and his birthday is on 29 June — ample time to brainstorm, save up and get him that spellbinding gift. Or so I thought.
Pumbaa decided to go on a marathon ‘growing up’ race, and I had to follow him all the time, capturing all those phases on cam Of course, I forgot to plan, save up and everything. When 27 June 2011
dawned dusked-and-went-to-sleep on me, I panicked and made my bro lose sleep on gift ideas. We were to leave to Kerala on 28th night, and I had very little time!
On 28 June, at work I noticed a colleague comparing her SE Xperia with another’s iPhone, and asking people which was the better one.
iPhone! Why not!
And just 3-4 days back, another colleague had told me he wanted to buy an iPhone 4 — that there was some fab offer from Airtel. I almost asked him what iPhone 4 is, whether it was a collection of 4 iPhones Yes, I’m a little tech-savvy that way. But I saved myself some humiliation and did not ask it. So I logged into the Airtel site, checked it out, understood nothing about the fab-ness, saw the iPhone, found it sexy, pictured it in Suraj’s palms and liked the picture!
One call to the bro sent him going to the Airtel store, asking about the plans, the rates, the costs — uh oh, the cost…gulp. Anyway, while he was apparently taking out his credit card, they told him they only have the white one! And have I already told you how much Suraj loves — just LOVES — the colour black? So, he went back home, assuring me “We’ll buy it tomorrow, from Kochi — and actually gift it to him ON his b’day”.
29 June dawned, and we were in hot, humid Kochi. I stole Suraj’s own credit card, took what was there in my account as well, gave them to my brother, and sent him in search of a black iPhone.
So apparently, it’s real tough for me to actually give him a gift on his birthday, even if I decide to, and even have the money! The people at the Airtel store had too many things to stop us from buying it — SIM issues, number migration, plan continuity, rate changes. Bleh!
So then we decided to get it for him once we reach back to Bangalore. Which would be on 2nd July. Whatever!
And then my bro comes up with “How about an iPad instead? It’s so much more cheaper than an iPhone too. Plus he already has a decent enough phone. Think about it.” But again, my bro would reach back only on 5th, and I couldn’t do this alone. So another few days I waited.
I check out iPad2 on the Apple website and fall in love with it! Awesome would be an understatement! Now, the brother has postponed his trip, and would reach only on 14th… No issues, I think. I’ve delayed it so much. It’ll be all the more a surprise for Suraj
And on 10th, Suraj comes home and narrates the story of how a colleague of his bought an iPad2 to work and showed off. He then told me he planned to buy one through an EMI: “I’m done buying extremely costly things with one-time payments — learnt that the hard way after Pumbaa and the Canon “. I panicked big time, called my bro and ordered him to land in Bangalore the very next day. Like my dad sits at the Indian railway and bus stations He got a ticket only for the 13th. I was dying by then, unable to hold on to this secret myself, wanting to tell Suraj.
And that’s when I check out the price: it’s as costly as the iPhone! Bah bah baaaah!
My brother reached, we realised I may not really be able to afford it, and decided to gift him this instead
And well, we made elaborate preparations:
- I came up with the idea of gifting him an actual “apple”
- My bro went to the fruit seller, enquired the cost for a kilo (120 bucks!) and said “please give me one”
- I bit off one side, took a marker and actually tried writing “iPad2″ on it
- My brother came up with this mini-iPad
- Dad and mom acted all cool and innocent as Suraj walked in
- I have a feeling even Pumbaa was on our side. There was none of the usual hyperactive welcome Chakkara Pumbaa
As Suraj sat down on the couch expecting a cup of tea, I put on my usual “kalla lakshanam” smile and forced him to ask me what I was up to I then gave him a Dark Fantasy biscuit, and wished him a “belated happy birthday”. My brother followed suit, and so did dad and mom. Pumbaa wanted to too, but we knew the biscuit would not reach Suraj Meanwhile, the expression on Suraj’s face while this drama unfolded was hilarious!
And then I told him I have a gift for him. His expression became even more comical.
I gave him clues.
I told him “Why do you think I withdrew all that money today?” Comic expression 3.
My brother began singing “oPod…o poduuu“. Comic expression 4.
“You liked that thing so much and wanted it.” Comic expression 5.
“You mentioned EMI”. Comic expression changes for a second to shock. And immediately back to something that said “Naa, she can’t have bought me an iPad2″.
I SO REGRET not having video taped him all that while DAMN ! Anyways, I slowly inched towards him, with my hands at my back — and brought out the home-made Apple iPad2.
Even though he kept saying “Naa, can’t be that. Out with it…”, and all that, I could see his face fall when he saw it was just an apple Ok, so maybe that wasn’t all that funny (Funniest thing was that my dad’s face fell even more when he saw Suraj’s disappointment! Fathers-in-law are meant to be not-so-emotionally-attached to their sons-in-law. Bah!)
And then, he downed his cup of tea, ate that entire apple at my request, and went upstairs to complete some urgent work. That’s when Dad apparently called him back to discuss something about the car insurance. And when he walked in for the second time that day, I handed him this:
I still can’t help but laugh when I remember how he reacted. He stood there stunned, not knowing what to say, who to look at, while the 5 of us (dad, mom, my bro, Pumbaa and I) looked at him expectantly. He kept opening and shutting his mouth like a cute goldfish, not knowing what and IF to say, to whom, what to do. He just stood there with the box in his hands for about 1 whole minute.
And THIS, dear people, is when I wanted to go jump into a deep water-less well — for NOT video taping this bit either Waah Double damn!
Of course, his first question had to be “Where did you get all the money from!?” !!! Seriously, Suraj, is that all you could ask? And then he opened it, showed it to everyone, forgot about going upstairs again, forgot about his “urgent work” which he ran up about 5 minutes ago to complete, and went back now and then to being the cute goldfish again
Of course, I questioned him later, to figure out how well he liked the whole drama and why he did the goldfish act for that long. Apparently, he was bloody shocked that I’d bought him a gift he had wanted and talked about just two days ago; he was doubly shocked when he got to know that I had this planned for almost half a month in advance — even before he even thought about the existence of something called an iPad; that no one had ever bought him a gift that he really really wanted and loved so much on sight; that he never thought I was capable of something so organized like this; that I didn’t limit it to the iPhone, for which he had no real love And of course, because he was the centre of attention on a very normal, mundane day, two weeks AFTER his birthday. Trust him to be sooo happy for all these small reasons. While I went and thanked my brother profusely on my birthday for the camera that Suraj actually gifted!
Of course, I guess it was a suicidal act on my part — he now has a TV, a laptop and an iPad2 !! And he doesn’t even want the TV anymore. So, that should tell you where I am. Sigh! I’m in his heart, you people I keep reminding him now and then, that I gave him an iPad2, what a wonderful wife I am, et al. Yea, I’m shameless that way
P.S.: Any doubts you wanna clear about the iPad2, please contact my “Chakkara Chooyaj”
P.S. of P.S.: Btw, the iPad2 is fantastic. Coming from someone like me, you can trust that statement totally!
P.S. of P.S. of P.S.: I’m officially broke and in debt for another year and half at least