The Grasshopper Experience & Superpowers!

Sometimes you wish having kids would come with a statutory warning!

“Henceforth, your life will never be your own! It is all going to be about THEM and only THEM! Whatever you do will be in THEIR best interest, if not they will make sure you do it in THEIR best interest! All your birthdays, anniversaries and special occasions will always be at a constant risk of being sabotaged! THEY will always have a right to throw a tantrum at any point of time THEY please and you cannot do SHIT about it! So suck it up and be a grown up!”

Okay, thoda zyada hogaya! But when they’re kids they throw tantrums because they’re hungry, gassy, poopy! And as they grow up, the kind of tantrums they throw for the kind of reasons…man!! It is not about putting up with a silly tantrum anymore but an irksome feeling…why can’t things be about me for once!?

You already know that I make a big deal about my birthdays and my anniversaries…ehem ‘our’ anniversaries! And birthday 2021 was very different than Birthday 2019 & 2020! You’ve heard me cribbing in my Valentine’s Day, Anniversary & Surprise gifts post about how Ram has suddenly become incapable of making my special day special!  But in 2021, Ram actually tried to pull it off and umm…our kids contributed and crashed it…continuing the legacy of their father of being proud party poopers!

Where is the ‘Surprise’ in the Gift?!

You know that I’ve taken charge of making my own birthdays happy, right?! So, every year I buy my own gifts for birthdays and anniversaries! This year too I had already ordered something I liked from Caratlane and was excited to wear it! The gift was inspired by Billie from Netflix’s Sex/life! It was such a turn off when my mum wondered aloud, “Kem lidhu? Aa toh dekhatu pan nathi!” (Kyun Liya? Yeh toh dikhta bhi nahi hai!) Infact, I’m always happy buying my own gifts till it’s actually my birthday! That very day it hits me…what’s the bloody point if you have to order your birthday gifts! How sad is that! Where is the surprise in the gift?!

While I do understand that it is a major pain for Ram, pay for the gift that I buy for myself and then listen to me crib about how he never does anything ‘special’ to make it ‘special’! But a girl feels what she feels and gotta do what she’s gotta do!  CRIB HER WAY TO GLORY TILL SHE IS FREAKING HEARD! As Ram puts it….“Khauf hai tu aur tera birthday!”

The Grasshopper Experience

So when you google ‘Most romantic restaurants in Bangalore’, The Grasshopper makes it to the list! Being one of the places you get a set 5/7 course meal, it has number of tables that you can count on your fingers (only one hand to be precise).  You need a booking well in advance to get a table! It looks like an exclusive experience suitable for a special occasion! Once bitten twice shy, Ram did not want to take a risk by doing something small this year, his peace of mind probably was worth more than the bomb of a bill that he knew he’d pay!

So the table was booked and it was supposed to be a surprise! But by the time it was evening, the bugger couldn’t wait and blurted it out! We were going to ‘Grasshopper’! While I was excited, I kept asking him about how much it was gonna cost! They generally tell you in advance, once you pick the courses from the options they give! No one wants a scene where color from peoples faces drain out looking at the bill after having a hearty meal, that too on a special occasion!

God’s Plan

It’s hilarious when even God wants to do ‘Teri keh ke loonga’ with you! Due to night curfew in Bangalore, Grasshopper folks informed us that they will shut off by 10, so we had to reach early! As usual, we got a ‘little’ late because I wanted to look pretty! I spent that extra bit of time for the ‘no make-up make-up look’! (In my defense, I started a bit late coz of the birthday phone calls! A girlz gotta enjoy all the attention she’s getting, right?!)

And then God intervened! IT RAINED! So there was mighty traffic jam adding to the might of already mighty Bangalore traffic and the place too was a bit far away because we stay far away from the city! We finally made it and had to literally run to the restaurant before my ‘no make-up make-up look’ painted me into a monster that I really am, within! (Kidding! I’m an angel inside out!)


God! The place was quaint and beautiful! Candles, warm lights, flowers and just two other couples occupying tables a little far from us! Before even I could react, I heard two reactions…extremely contrasting ones! Funnily, both equally embarrassing! While Riddh went, “How fancy is this place!” Dhruvi sulked, “We should have gone to ‘Via Milano’!”

Oi! My day? My surprise? My reaction? But a little voice in my head said…”Grow up b*tch!”

Riddh thought the place was fancy coz he heard me asking Ram how much he spent on it the entire day and saying we’re not going if it is way too much! At this age he probably thinks expensive=fancy=good and doesn’t understand the concept of ‘value for money’! He probably gets it from his father you know…had the little bugger been a ‘poora’ gujju…it would have been an inbuilt feature! And Dhruvi was on her own trip…there are no comfortable couches here, I don’t like this place! (I kinda agreed with that…comfortable couches mean that the kids go off to sleep after eating and Ram and I finally have a bit of quiet time for us to bullshit !)

Are you wearing ‘that’ for my birthday dinner?

Between all this mumbo jumbo in my head, the waiter….nah!! It would be so wrong to call him a waiter! Attendant? Yeah! That sounds more like it! So the attendant came and presented food and drink options. Every time he came, he explained about the course, the dish, the ingredients and a lot of other things!

The ‘attendant’ apparently was better dressed than Ram, who was wearing a casual tee! The one you wear when you go out for a casual chai! Also, other men on other tables were wearing blazers! But with years of experience under my belt of saying “Are you wearing ‘that’ to dinner tonight?” while going out, is just a mood killer! So, we (I & me) decided to pick a better time to pick that fight!

The Courses!

The first course: If I remember it right, this was goat cheese with cherry tomatoes, mashed mushrooms and olive oil!
The Second Course: Bruschetta with caramelized onions and sadly don’t remember what was that green mushy thing is! Some fancy word that I don’t remember! 😀
The Third Course: It was a star fruit, walnut & Kiwi salad!
The Fourth Course: Caramelized carrot and zucchini on the bed of again some green mash that I don’t remember! 😀


Towards the end, the Chef herself came and greeted us! She asked us about how we liked the food and before we even say anything….Riddh jumped, “The food was AWESOME! I felt like I was being served in a Michelin Start restaurant by Gordon Ramsay himself!” God! How does the little bugger even know all this! Michelin star? Gordon Ramsay? Damn! Then I started to play it cool coz…she shouldn’t get a feeling like this was our first time in at fancy restaurant! (Looking at the bill…it sure was! )

Finally, it was the time for the cake, which was goooooood!!! I just cut it, and took a tiny piece to put it in Riddh’s mouth and even before I take a second one….Dhruvi just put the entire piece in hers! Abhi aaya abhi choo?

The Rant!

Well, after we were done with the food, the bill came and trust me, 5k more and I could have gotten another invisible diamond neckpiece from Caratlane! (Well, food was expensive and diamond chain not so much!)

The drive back home was full of cuss words! A rant where my salad-hating husband went ballistic coz “Kitna ghaas-phoos khila dia!” (He is a pakka South Indian, give him curd-rice-pickle and he’s the happiest man! But offer him anything remotely healthy, he’ll throw a tantrum just like his kids!) He kept saying that he’s gonna recommend the experience to everyone coz why should only he have all the fun!

Honestly, the place was gorgeous & serene. If it were just Ram & I, it would have been wonderful to just laze around, eat and talk! (Plus, the bill would have been lighter!) But do I love my little party poopers! (I was trying to be happy and make peace with it. And then birthday 2022 happened!)

Birthday 2022

Taking a hint from Birthday 2021, I decided to ‘grow up’! I thought let’s not make a big deal and be all chill! Let’s just go for a quiet family dinner! (After the pre-birthday bash, of course!) I did not even buy a gift for myself! (Except for a few dresses here and there…which is HUGE, OKAY?) And then God AGAIN started humming…‘Teri Kehke Loonga!!’

Riddh’s trek got scheduled on 6th August and Alas! My sad puppy faces did not work on him! After dropping him to school, we went to salsa class, along with Dhruvi coz she had no where to go! (And a surprised salsa-mate commented, “You popped a child?” And as always, Ram killed my mojo casually with, “Oh! This is the second one she popped!”) Now, Ram thinks it’s stupid/kiddish to distribute chocolates in the class so I did not even do that! (Later, I learnt they have a birthday custom! The birthday girl stands in the center dancing with a partner while rest of the guys dance around them! If it’s a birthday boy, then all the girls would swap and dance around him!)

Then we went for a coffee, waiting for Riddh to be back from the trek!  We waited forever and then when we picked him up, it was too late to go for dinner! We decided to go some other time and went home & crashed! Just like that, God gave me what I wanted! A F*CKING NORML DAY! Plus, the ‘other time’ never happened coz ‘Shaadi ke gaane Shaadi me hi gaaye jaate hai!’ (Hmm, sounds much better in Gujarati!)


Mannnn! How BORING and over-rated is growing up??? Hence, I & myself decided that WE are NOT growing up EVER! It felt soooooooo terribly dull to have a normal day for a birthday! So WE are gonna make a BIG DEAL about our birthday, COME WHAT MAY!

But then Birthday 2022 was made special. I got my favorite gift of all time, something I love & cherish; Words! (And once again, if you think the bugger writes better than me then, F*CK YOU!)


What comes to your mind when I say ‘Super Powers’? Tons of Strength?? X Ray vision? Mind Control? Maybe I’m just mixing DC & Marvel. Either way, I for one, would want to be invisible and do some naughty things. But today isn’t about me. It’s about my superior half (sticking to the ‘Super’ theme), Chandani. As she turns the page to a new year in her life, it dawned on me that I’ve known this girl for 20 years now. 20 years of non-stop stupidity, endless fun & laughter, some fights and tons of loving memories archived somewhere in the subconscious. Maybe instead of my invisibility ‘superpower’ I would want the power to go back in time and live all those moments again and make them extra special, say things I might not have said, and do things better or sillier.
I wish I could travel back in time, and meet her again, the first time and be more presentable this time. Last time around I hadn’t aced my ‘airport look’ and got instant feedback.

I wish I could redo our first kiss and not get slapped this time.

I wish I had taken up that offer in IBM for the Michelin project and traveled to Paris with her in the first few months of our marriage.
I wish I could go back in time and be with her just after Riddh was born and tell her I loved the way ‘Chubby Chandani’ looked. I was so busy with Riddh, that I hadn’t paid attention to her at all for a few months. What wouldn’t I do to change that?  To tell her that she is the most beautiful woman on this planet, and tell her (more than a million times) I love her.
I wish I could leap back in time and make a note of all her dreams.. No, I actually did. Travel the world, direct a movie, learn new dance forms, chill on a beach, go hiking, basically live up to her motto – On a holiday this birth.
I wish I could scroll through the pages of time and see her grow from an innocent carefree fun loving girl to…ermm… an innocent carefree fun loving woman. Ahhh… Not much has changed there.

I wish I could spend a few more life times with her – again.

Now I wonder, why do I love her so much? Is it me or is it her? Am I just very loving, or does she make me love her? Does she have a super power of being likeable? Does she have a super power of doing shitty things and getting away with anything, just acting cute and smiling? Does she have a super power to make people around her feel special?
I don’t know about others, but I do. Around her, I feel most handsome, loving, witty, powerful, settled, loud, intelligent and awesome. I thought it was ME. Come to think of it, it’s because of her. It’s the way she looks at me (I feel like a Greek God), her smile (for which I can say and do the shittiest of things), her presence (that gives me the belief I can I fight the world), her hugs (telling me everything’s going to be great) and the way she sleeps like a baby in my arms, making me feel like nothing else matters or is more important than that moment. I know it’s not me, it’s you.
So on this day Chandani, as I wish you many more Happy and Crazy birthdays, I also want to tell you, I know your secret now. Your super power. Making this world feel special “one at a time”.  Keep going, spread the love and let the child in you thrive. Am sure anyone would find you worth knowing and being with. After all, who doesn’t want to feel special.

Winding up!

Phew! The bugger does write well, nai? 🙂 So mighty glad to have so much love in life; family, friends, kids & Ram! 🙂 I got such beautiful lingering happy feeling! BUT since my birthday is just around the corner, I’ve this very strong feeling! The feeling is ‘DISAPPOINTMENT’!  The bugger did not let me book a weekend at Karma Nandi Hills even when it was available! And says he has something planned! Owing to my past experiences and knowing him, my kids and even GOD… you cannot blame me for feeling the feeling! Let’s see how BD 2023 goes!

P.S.: I remembered our dating days when Ram used to sing It’s only words, and words are all I have, to take your heart away’  from Boyzone for me all the time! I just realized THE BUGGER WASN’T KIDDING! (Also, putting in all the pretty pictures from La Vallee Village, Paris coz birthday pictures weren’t all pretty!)

Alright, WDYT! Should we take birthdays and anniversaries easy as we grow older? Or it is okay to be tad bit narcissistic! Feel free to pop in comment section!