The Unsent Courier

So my cousin who gave birth to a baby boy sometime earlier last month is having some issues feeding her baby…we have been talking on and off and I, imagine RM, yes yes, I have been giving her advice… the other day, I told her that I will just courier the breast pump which my friend had sent for me thoughtfully from the USA when R was 4 months…and she could perhaps try pumping out the milk and giving it..

Unfortunately,  I delayed the sending by a couple of days, since we were caught up with stuff..and then yesterday, I got it all packed properly thanks to the MIL’s efficient packaging skills and decided to courier it from a courier fellow near work..

So, I go during lunch time braving the hot hot sun and go inside

RM: Bhai, mereko yeh courier karna hai (Bhai, I want to courier this)

Bhai: Kya?

RM: yeh package…

and I show him the package which is a 12 inches by 6 inches package, not too big but not too small obviously…all packed in newspaper

B: Kya hai issmein

RM: Breast pump hai..lekin electric nahi hai..manual breast pump hai (Its a breast pump, but its not electric, its a manual breast pump)

He looks startled at me, while the one girl and one boy who are his assistants are gaping at me as if I am speaking Greek

B: Kya kya

RM: arey woh breast mein se milk nikalte hain woh pump hai..lekin manual hai..aap chaheye toh open kar ke dekhlijiye…Phir se packing karna hoga (Its the pump through which you remove milk from the breast, its manual, if you want open the package and see it and then you can pack it)

B: nahi nahi (No no) as if I am asking him to walk on fire…give me bill

RM: Bhai, there is no bill, Someone sent it from the USA for me, and now I have to courier it to my sister

B: errr..errr…errr…kya bole aap yeh hai? (What did you say this is?)

RM: arey, breast pump hai..mujhe pata hai security reason ke liye aap aise hi nahi bhej sakte, toh aap khol ke dekhlijiye (Its a breast pump, I know you cant sent it directly due to security reasons, but you can open it and see)

B: no no no (very vehemently) as if he was expecting something to pop out of the package

RM: Can you send it?

B: Rs 450 hoga

RM: Kya basis pe (on what basis) weight?

B: nahi size (no size)

RM: okie, I will call my cousin and ask for her for the address

Then I spoke to my mama, explaining to him that I was couriering the breast pump and if he could send me the address

While I was talking all this, the girl was looking at me as if I should get my head examined..and the bhai and his guy assistant were staring at me as if I was crazy!!!

Mama asked me to speak to my cousin and when I spoke to her, she finally decided against it *Reminds self to whack her on the head when we meet next*

Anyways, after all the drama, I tell that guy, abhi nahi bhejna…if I want to send I will come back to you’

and he just nodded still gaping at me!

What stuck me in the entire duration of 15 minutes, is the lack of the guy to meet my eyes, as soon as I uttered the word breast pump…I mean, I didnt use any porn word did I? I was being practical and told him what it was truthfully…

Why then, this looking-at-the-customer-as-if-she-is-crazy thing!

I must admit that after R’s birth, I have become a lot more clinical, a lot more open about using words like breasts, and potty and su-su, a lot more non-caring if my bra strap is showing or buying innerwear..well everyone wears them and every has them eh?…

I found the entire situation really funny now when I am typing this out for the blog….but on a serious note, I just hope people are a lot more open about such tools which are just helping new mothers and easing their tasks…

I am wondering how the guy would have reacted if RD had taken the courier with him? (which was the original plan!)


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68 Responses to The Unsent Courier

  1. hitchy says:

    Well well… our conditioning is such we just are not used to it I guess ! The bhai was a really cute shy guy I guess 😀

  2. The Bride says:

    Oh yeah any mention of the B-word scandalises everyone. Not just in India, I get it here also. My Fil in law quaintly refers to breastmilk as “mother’s milk”. So maybe if you feel like sparing the courier guy next time you can use this dainty description.

    Little do these people know that breasts are the least sexual and romantic thing to a woman who has breastfed. They are just tools for their intended purpose, feeding a child. But I guess breasts have become so sexualised, the very mention of them and a pornographic image must be popping up in people’s heads of a boob.

    • R's Mom says:

      Mother’s Milk – I should have used that word…I dont know Bride..I just couldnt think of an alternate word and honestly it didnt strike me at all!!

      I dont know what the guy was thinking..may be nothing sexual..its just that he was astonished at my words 🙂

  3. vethal says:

    A large part of our country is still very much in the lower middle class bracket. It is only now due to many women working we know about this tool. So his reaction is expected.

  4. Scribby says:

    phirst? well no actually hitchy bhai is already here it seems 😦 okay now let me read the post!

    • Scribby says:

      I think that’s something to do with culture? I mean we are still not open to using words like breasts and bra and stuff in open and normal tones. You can hear [not really] people talk in hush tones while asking for under garments in a shop…ladies till prefer that there should be a females sales girl to show them options and things like that…

      this was basic stuff..come to breast pump- I’ve too experienced such stuff when I became a new mother. Me being me I had read so much before I delivered that I could have fairly considered a Ph.D in Pregnancy and Delivery [pun intended :)] so I was pretty much familiar with the words and the tools associated with this whole thing. But when I used to talk about breast pump or stuff to my friends [who were going to deliver just after me or around the same time] and family they used to try to kind of avoid talking about it….I think this is all because people are not aware / they are still sticking to old methods regarding anything pregnancy & post pregnancy things/ they don’t think it’s appropriate to use words like ‘breast’ in public [public here means = 2-3 people / on phone]

      so I think it all has to do with your mindset / your surroundings. For example me after reading so much also would have hesitated to speak such words if my mindset was programmed like that…you know what I mean ?

      Also few days back I heard an aunt telling us about another lady who had breast cancer- guess how she would have said that? she said “that lady was suffering from chest cancer” 🙂

      so ‘breast’ word is a taboo…..only to speak per say but otherwise people don’t mind its use in the ways it’s being used! phunny no? 😀

      P.S as usual a long comment 😛 I always end up writing so much on your blog..kya karein your posts are so interesting and thought provoking that I can’t stop my fingers 🙂

      • R's Mom says:

        I think you are right..before I delivered R, I think even I was very conscious of using words like breast, potty, bra etc..but after my delivery, (especially my horrid one) I read so much, that now it just comes naturally to I told didnt even strike me that may be the guy was uncomfortable with my choice of words 🙂

        Glad you think my posts are interesting..heheeh 🙂 coming from you someone whose writings I admire a lot…..its a BIG compliment

        • Scribby says:

          there comes a point in my mind too-I don’t know why your cousin refused to receive the breast pump…I’m guessing that may be even she was not happy with the idea of using a breast pump…I mean I’ve spoken to friends who think using a breast pump is like doing something below decency level…they forget that the utmost important thing is to feed the baby the mother’s milk and not think about what will people think etc…

          another thing that comes to my mind is- [yes my mind is vella ;)] the store wallah must have felt astonished that you straight came in and without hesitation used the word breast pump…he might be stunned for a female to use THE word publicly and so straightforwardly…yeah?

          • R's Mom says:

            no no my cousin asked me not to send immediately since my mama got her a smaller desi version and she was like ‘akka, let me try that and see, otherwise you courier this’ arey she is desperate to try anything rey 🙂

            I know I know..I agree to your vella but intelligent mind..I am now reading the comments and realising that perhaps he was just too shocked at me using it without any sharam or anything 🙂 but honestly Scribby, it just didnt strike me that breast pump had the word ‘breast’ before it…I was just thinking so technically!!!

      • The Bride says:

        “Chest cancer” bwahahahaha!

  5. Hehehe You take the trouble of packaging it and your cousin decides she does not want it!! No wonder you want to whack her on the head! 😀

    Well RM, the fact is that breasts are so over-sexualised in the imagination of the average male that any reference, spoken or visual, to their primary function–feeding babies–makes many men very uncomfortable.This in turn makes women uncomfortable too, which is why women seldom breastfeed in public if they can help it.

    //I am wondering how the guy would have reacted if RD had taken the courier with him? (which was the original plan!)//

    I am sure RD would have got a few stares too, but maybe the ‘bhai’ would have felt less uncomfortable asking him all about it–yeh kya hai/ Isse kya karte hain/ Milk kyun nikalte hain/?kaise piyega bachcha etc. I am sure it was the first time the poor guy had even heard of such a thing 😀

  6. So it’s not just that condoms are difficult to buy, we are too ‘decent’ to courier breast pumps too. 😐 And ofcourse we don’t dry our underwear where someone might see them.

    • R's Mom says:

      arey MIL doesnt like me hanging my inner wear on the most outside wala line..I am like I wash it with my hands, so it will take longer to dry than the other clothes which are washed in the machine na!

      She told me a couple of times, but now has given up I guess 🙂

  7. Basically you offended his moral sensibilities 😀

  8. Ashwathy says:

    First things first. I love that ‘I’ first in black and then in bold and red to highlight it!! 😀 😀 And yes, I pay attention to these things 😛

    ROFL!!!! 😀 😀 😀 Hyuk hyuk! :mrgreen:
    And this is why I love you!! You are so nutty it’s not even funny!! 😆 So bindaas, non-caring…and a psycho!!! 😀 😀

  9. Hee hee, sorry but I couldn’t resist LOL on reading this post. Can imagine your situation, RM! 🙂

    I think this is a case of sheer ignorance, and nothing else. You know what a breast pump is, but the guys at the courier shop probably didn’t. They probably thought it was something….. well, dirty. That’s why the reaction, I’m guessing, based on your post. 🙂

    • R's Mom says:

      I dont think he thought anything dirty..well I dont know what he thought..but he sure was astonished at my usage of the word breast so many times 🙂

  10. techie2mom says:

    “He looks startled at me, while the one girl and one boy who are his assistants are gaping at me as if I am speaking Greek” LOL
    In all probability they heard about breast pump for the 1st time leaving them in a state of shock, thinking “Aisa bhi hota hai!!?!?”

  11. journomuseed says:

    I so agree…I always find it strange when people try to surreptitiously correct an errant bra strap peeping out and lord forbid, you mention the B-word..bitch is ok, breast is not even today..and I can just imagine you talking about breast pumps..On a tangent, I don’t know why in India, motherhood also has to be all roses and happiness of having produced an offspring and not about hormonal swings, days when you just want to abandon it all and take off to the Himalayas and sometimes checking for 666 on a constantly bawling child..:) These are things my friends have faithfully reported, I am not stretching it..:)

    • R's Mom says: India using the breast word publicly is not a brilliant idea..and I got to know of it yesterday *rolls eyes*

      oh trust me, there are times in motherhood when I have felt like running away to the Himalayas and NEVER coming back…its not that rosy…I should do a separate post on that saachmein!

  12. sigh! why this…why this…kolaveri at such an innocent and highly nutritious part of the body eh? :mrgreen:

  13. SM says:

    For the sake of your loyal readers who love the way you write, please please please do ask RD to go to the courier fellow – would love to read what happens then! (RD can pretend that your cousin calls and cancels also) :)))

  14. Nithvin says:

    Breast pump hai..lekin electric nahi hai..manual breast pump hai (Its a breast pump, but its not electric, its a manual breast pump)-LOL..the poor guy would not have even known about a breast pump and you give him all technical details about wonder he was bewildered 🙂
    But thanks to you, the guys and gal(s) at the courier shop have learnt of the existence of a breast pump, and in all probability might remember you always for this 🙂

  15. 🙂 Ah well,it’s a good thing you have a blog. Writing your entire life ka episodes would result in too many volumes 😛
    Ya, I go with “He hasn’t any idea of what it was and could just hear breast breast”. I hope he googles it 🙂

  16. ashreyamom says:

    he he he.. looks like he didnt understand what it is.. so he just heard the word Breast and thought something else.. abd u tried to exaplin if its manual or electric also?? nice..

    at times when you know certain products and describe and expect others also understand the prob occurs. this reminds me, i too had prob making my mother understand what tampons were when we came across it in super market. looking at the shape i expected her to know how to use.. but its not that everyone has this imaginative power to look at things and know its best fir use na..

  17. DI says:

    Haha! I am not surprised! This was very very funny 😀 And Amen to the fact that having a baby makes you totally not-conscious about SO many things! I can vouch for that!
    That being said, I can imagine how the guy must have been taken aback! I need to tell this though, I was on Birth control pills a couple of years ago, and asked The Dude to pick a pack. He went to this small medical store, and said the name, he asked what it was. When The Dude said ‘BCP’ , he actually got bugged and said ” Hum aisi cheezen nahi rakhte!” Poor Dude was su[per-shocked! I still find it very funny 😀

  18. Amit says:

    I think the guy had no idea what you were talking about. He will not sleep for the next two days before he confirms whether his male friends know about such a thing. I think he just heard “breast” and went completely blank after that…something similar to what happens when someone bursts a firecracker near our ear.

  19. bhai bola na usko isliye .. 🙂

    i guess we have a long way to go to be able to talk freely over NORMAL things ..

    I had a similar situation which even i am ebarassed to say when I was asked to open a package at the delhi airport 🙂

  20. My Era says:

    My sincere concern for the poor guy who I am sure was too stunned by your words to have found it impossible to work normally hours after you left his place 😆 😆 😆

    Ok jokes and sarcasm apart, I agree with you on the point of him being totally ignorant about what you were talking about and more so cause of the way our society tries to stop men and women talking about body parts as if that way the morality and social values are being preserved. The next time you come across someone ignorant like him, tell him it’s a pump to help feeding an infant (so that no body parts or milk issues come in question).

    This producing a bill for courier can cause trouble in so many occasions that sending anything that’s not newly bought gets very tough 😦

    • R's Mom says:

      I should have mailed you..gah! that was perhaps a better way of saying it ‘pump to feed an infant’ uffff! when..God…when will I get the words right!!!

      oh yaa..this bill thing is a pretty big pain na!

  21. Varsh says:

    Now this is unfair to the poor guy. He knew two words: breasts and pumps. Putting them together and imagining the meaning would probably take him a lifetime! I’m sure in his mind he might’ve thought things like: ye kya hota hai? kya kya banane lag gaye hain aajkal? hamare time pe to aisa nahi tha…etc 😀
    I think after facing the embarrassment of walking around looking like a lollipop and inviting unnecessary attention during pregnancy makes women oblivious to a lot of other minor things. Men, somehow, still don’t get the point?

  22. I guess it is just the way he might be brought up RM. He might be uncomfortable hearing it form his wife too who knows…

  23. anisnest says:

    I was reading the post with a serious note and the last line cracked me up.. RM’s touch eh?
    chalega RM.. not everyone or for that say not every mother let alone everyone knows about breast pump at India.. so choduthe yaar..

  24. Tanishka says:

    lol… poor guy must have not even looked at the other gal who was there for hours together… 😀 😀

  25. BongMom says:

    Ha, ha…too funny. I think whatever happened; happened because the guy had never heard of a “breast pump”. Water Pump — chalo sahi hai. Breast pump !!!! It was beyond his imagination 🙂

    • R's Mom says:

      Bongmom..hi :):) long time :):)

      I know rey…I was well…I guess like I said, I wasnt thinking ..and just generally said the word as always 🙂

  26. Smita says:

    You see Men can ogle at breasts but when you say the word they can go pink & greenand even call us modern women who don’t think before speaking! Hypocrites!

  27. Pingback: On Being Maternal | R's Mom

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