Those of you who read the first part of Chaos @ Airport may be interested to know about the rest of the story.
Adi loves books just as much as I do. So, when he saw the Odyssey bookshop inside the airport, he was so delighted. He rushed to the kids section where there were lots of comics and coloring books. In his enthusiasm, he took out most of the coloring books one after the other and wanted to buy it all. This got me worried because I was trying to balance two bags while trying to organize the coloring books back in the correct place.
From the corner of my eyes, I could see the frown on the sales girl's face. I reasoned out with Adi in the best way I could. I took each coloring book and said, "You already have this one at home so why should we buy the same one here?" or "It is too expensive and I really don't think we should buy this one today."
Adi, in his enthusiasm, wouldn't budge. He says, "Amma, you have money in your bag."
So, I said, "Yes, but that money is not for the coloring book."
That irritated Adi, "Why, Amma? Why you won't buy me the coloring books?"
"I can't buy all these coloring books. Take two."
Adi gets smart now. "Three or four, not two."
"No, take two. "
"Three or four."
I am not a great bargainer and Adi knows it so I budge and say, "Fine, three." Then, Adi gives me the most charming smile and says, "Please, Amma, four."
We reason it out back and forth and finally, we agree that three is a reasonable number. Adi is not too pleased but I pay for the coloring books and try to quickly get out of the store before he screams and asks to buy everything in there.
I take a look at the TV that shows which airline is scheduled for departure and as I turn around, balancing my two bags as well, I realize that Adi is not with me.
I turn around, look all around me. There are lots of people everywhere. I can't imagine how the brat could dissappear in a minute just like that. I imagine all kinds of things. What if some pervert had kidnapped him? Oh my god, I had managed to lose my only child at the airport and I wanted to kick myself right there!
I called out for Adi but there was no answer. I ran in four different directions with the bags and people were really staring at me as if I had just gone crazy. I didn't care how I looked right then. I wanted my son!
Then I saw a young couple who were watching me and whispering to each other. I went right ahead and asked them if they saw a little boy and they said no. A young guy who sat next to them told me, "Is that your boy there?"
I looked in the direction he had pointed and there was Adi! He was hiding behind a bookshelf in the same Odyssey bookstore and enjoying the whole spectacle! He was watching me turn into a half-crazed, panicky mom and enjoying it! I ran after him and he ran too. He knew that I was really angry but he was smart enough to know that I couldn't run so fast with two bags weighing me down. I didnt want him to run and get hurt so I called out, "I love you, Adi, I m not angry." He was smarter and he called out while running, "You angry me, Amma? You angry me?"
Of course, I was hopping mad but I wasn't about to say that and let him vanish. I said, "I am not angry because I found you, Adi. I love you. You are my only son. How can I live without you?"
I guess I sounded lovable because he stopped running and looked at me. All my anger melted when I looked into his big, dark eyes and watched his lips curve into the perfect, melting smile. I seemed melt away like butter and all I did was hug my son close to me, thanking God that I hadn't lost him. It is hard to explain but all I wanted was for time to stand still so that I could hold my son so close to my heart.
Then, the announcement came. It was time for boarding the flight. With Adi in tow, I ran to the gate. I don't know what happened but Adi ran off in another direction and all the coloring books in his hand tumbled out onto the floor. I got so angry now because I knew we were losing time. Adi was out of control and so was I. I started shouting at Adi. How can you behave like this? Why do you make things so difficult? Why do you keep running off? Blah, blah, blah.
Adi had the perfect answer. He began screaming. Let me confess: once Adi begins screaming, it has no end until he decides it is the perfect time to end it. This time, I was totally crazy too so I started screaming as well. Adi looked seriously worried. He stopped screaming because he didn't know how to handle my screaming.
Then, I composed myself and said, "Come, Adi, lets go."
It struck me that I had only one air ticket instead of two. I started looking everywhere around me and I found that one ticket was all that I had. I was ready to cry in frustration and just then, before you could even blink, Adi started crying.
I said, "Adi, you've really behaved very very badly and now you've made me lose one ticket. I guess I will have to go and you will have to stay at the airport."
He howled harder.
I said, "Can you remember where you saw the other ticket?"
He howled and howled and passengers were giving me ugly looks. Of course, I knew I was to blame. I am the world's most disorganized mom. I couldnt remember how one ticket had slipped from my hands and now i was interrogating my three year old kid as if he had lost it!
I was about to cry right then because I was so tired and exhausted. I just threw the bags on to the floor and sat, praying to God. I knew I would miss the flight.
A smartly dressed lady in a white uniform came up to me and gave me the ticket. She smiled as if she knew what I was going through and I thanked her in a state of disbelief and joy. Needless to say, I ran through the security gate, clutching my two bags and two tickets in one hand and my bratty son in the other.
As we boarded the flight, both mother and son were smiling and relaxed. We had fought our battles for the day, faced the rough seas and now we were ready to fly the skies together again. Till tomorrow comes, we would be happy cuddling each other and finding ways not to quarrel like kids. Welcome to our crazy world!