And So We Saw The Stars

Long Post Ahead..written for Record Purposes

R and I..we did some moving around without RD on Saturday..while the father was enjoying the hospitality of the aviation sector, the mother and daughter, were enjoying the thrills of traveling by local transport in hot and humid Bombay..

I must admit that for the first time, we travelled completely by public transport..only trains and buses..we didnt even take a rick or a cab *Proud to save some fuel for the nation*

Ani had written about how she enjoyed with Adi on a Friday

So I was like well, I could it..take R to the South Side of Bombay and perhaps see the Museum and Planetarium.

Here I must admit, that I was too scared to do it alone..so I asked a couple of people, but most of them were busy..so I decided to cancel it, but RD was like why not?

Well, then I gathered my courage and went ahead and booked the tickets for the 3 o clock show for the Planetarium.Online. All by myself. Without calling RD for help. Major achievement I tell ya!

Anyways, you just need to book the tickets hereΒ  incase you want to book them in advance(Its a good idea because most shows are housefull due to the summer vacation rush)

So this is how we did it.

Got up in the morning and I packed

1. A roll of tissues
2. Two nasta dabbas with biscuits and chips
3. Water bottle
4. Extra pair of clothes for R
5. Books for both of us to read in the train
6. Caps for both of us
7. My office backpack to carry all that

and so we set off at about 9.30 with idlis in our tummy.

We got a bus to the station. and then took a fast local to churchgate. R finished reading one of the books in the train πŸ™‚ Well I read for her..but whatever!

and we saw the names of the station, giggled at silly things, smiled at co-passengers and drank one bottle of water.

We got off at Churchgate and I showed her the engine. Since we were sitting right at the start of the train where the ladies compartment was, I had to just get down and show her where from where the horn was blowing. We peered into the engine as the motor men changed their shifts but both of them seemed unwelcoming to ask a child to come in and check, so we just peered from outside, wondered how ‘high’ their chairs were and went ahead.

I had warned R that she would have to do some major walking. The sun hit us as we went out of the station but thankfully the walk was pretty shady.

Here I must admit, that my knowledge of South Bombay is zero, nada, zilch. And as such my geography would have made even Colombus cry..but, I was a determined mother.

So, we kept asking and going…first few times I asked Prince of Wales Museum and people looked at me as if I am a martian from Venus, but when I started asking Chatrapati Shivaji Mueseum, they told me to keep walking…

Just near Flora Fountain, we both found a lovely Parsi worship placeΒ  BehramΒ Well (image found on google http://www.flickr.com/photos/humayunnapeerzaada/471669360/) built in 1725 AD.

It was lovely and both of us peeped in. It was clearly written ‘Entry only for Parsees’ and R wanted to know why she could not go and say namaste to the God inside..Errr…well…I didnt answer her anything and said they would allow only Parsis like Jamshedji (one song she hears has the word Jamshedji who speaks Parsi) to enter..she recognized the holy symbol of Parsis in the temple and connected it to the song and was very happy πŸ™‚

and then we moved on from there…walked and walked till we both were getting a bit tired..so stopped at a nariyal pani wala and had yummy nariyal pani!

and then we walked again and finally figured out the Museum…There was a huge crowd of the Mumbai Darshan buses but we went in…

Stood in the line for about 15 minutes and finally I asked for one ticket (I didnt carry a camera and R didnt require a ticket since only above 5 years need a ticket) It was Rs.40 and I had only 30 Rs in tenners and Rs.500…the man was pretty rude..give me change…I said ‘sir I am out of change’

Him: ‘Give me I dont have change either’ which I didnt believe because I saw 3 people hand him 100 Rs notes which he would have with him at least 1000 Rs in change…I said Sir please I dont have change..he just waved me away and I was so furious..but I didnt say anything because R was getting bugged in the heat and was getting worried asking me Amma kya hua no ticket..so I gave him chillar…my precious coins for 10 Rs 😦

Anyways, that apart we went in..and first saw the Pre-historic section..which had stuff on the Harappan civilisation…I loved the way one father was teaching about the ancient stamps to his 8-9 year old daughter…I stood there listening and he realised I was eavsdropping listeningΒ  and he smiled at me and went on with the explanation…

R was interested in the broken pots! and old age weapons..

Then I realised that perhaps she was a little bored so I took her to the natural history section and boy! we came out impressed..

They have stuffed birds, animals, snakes, octopus, sharks, whales, snakes, insects, butterflies and what not…Totally impressive..

both R and I were totally impressed with the weaver bird’s nest and the remains of the shark…Its awesome and I recommend a visit to every parent..while 4 years is definitely young for a museum, just take them there to get a hang of old things and of course the natural history section..

We went upstairs to the coin section but R was clearly bored and hungry..

took her out and didnt know where to eat..so called up a friend and she suggest a place called Chetana very near the museum..but knowing my sense of direction! I got lost..it was hot and R was cranky…

I asked around and even saw a Synagogue inside a gaali…wanted to go there, but R was so so cranky that I had to search for that Chetana..when we went in, they said they had only thali…

RM: Kuch nasta nahi milega?

Man: Madam, thali ka time hai

RM: oh kuch bhi nahi hai?Β *Pleading look*

He looked at me and then R both looking at him expectantly and said well starters hai

RM: Kya

Man: Aloo bhaji and dhokla

R: dhokla, dhokla, dhokla, dhokla

Well he didnt have a choice did he?

He gave us a piping hot plate of dhokla and R finished 90% of that and then 1 cool chilled superb glass of mango milkshake

Then we left the place and I saw a sandwich wala on the street…just as I thought of ordering the brat sees the next guy and screams ‘Amma poochka’

Thats it…we had poochkas at 1 in the afternoon in the blazing sun πŸ™‚ Topped it off with a sev poori (I think poochkas taste better in town!)

Anyways, we walked back to Churchgate while R was cribbing a bit about the heat and all that…but I carried her for a while and we stood for a bus to Worli..and we stood and stood and stood

for about 20 minutes, till I thought let me just take a cab..when I saw a bus and asked the conductor if it went to the Planetarium and he said yes…I bought the ticket and requested him to let me know when it comes so that I can get off..he said yes yes of course

So we boarded the bus and had a mini-south bombay darshan..saw the Lamington road where Appa and RMB visit often for electronics part..the best part was R watching a train moving with us all the way till Charni Road station..she was so so fascinated by it..Amma dekho we overtook the train or the train over took us..the bus was pretty much entertained..

we stopped at the Haji Ali signal and saw the sea πŸ™‚ ‘Amma dekho kitna sara water…only small boats in sea’

It was awesome and finally I realized we reachedΒ  a stop called Nehru something…I turned around and asked him ‘yeh hai Planetarium’ and he was like yes yes..and then there was some confusion…I dragged R to the front of the bus shouting ek minute ek minute to the driver while the conductor rung the bell..in short total confusion…Finally the driver stopped and we got off with R shouting ‘Amma aa gaya, Amma aa gaya?‘ wondering why we were getting off in a hurry πŸ™‚

Anyways we crossed the road and reached the Planetarium…I was astonished to see the amount of people and kids there…ALL SHOWS were running housefull and I was thankful for having booked tickets in advance..

We stood in the line and they allowed us entry at 2.45….We used the loo (Pretty clean though one idiot of a lady made her kid pee on the floor in the western loo and made the entire floor wet Gah!) and then there was a mini exhibition where R could recognize a few planets by name πŸ™‚

The guy explaining also talked about the transit of Venus on June 6th and also gave superb information on which planet is visible from where at what time etc etc..

then we went into the show…I had booked a separate seat for R since she is almost 4 and then this was the first time she would be alone in a theatre like atmosphere (I have never taken her to movies till date)

Anyways, we sat and then the show started in 20 minutes time (It was late, and people were still coming in..when will people in India learn to value time I wonder 😦 )

It was nice. Seriously informative..I would have preferred a slightly more understandable version for school kids..words used were a bit over the top but on the whole R enjoyed the coming and going of stars…They explained the origin of the universe the various star constellations, compared the constellations to the Indian rashis, different planets, milky way, solar system..in short it was a lot of information packed show…

We finished the show, came out and had some cucumbers…

then stood forever for a bus to dadar station..finally got a bus…and I asked the conductor to let me know when Dadar station came and he tells me ask the Driver..andI am like WHAT..how can I ask the driver…the driver turned around and smiled and said ‘dont worry madam, I will tell you:)’

R went off to sleep..

The driver was kind enough to tell me when the stop came and as I got down, another lady her 10 year old son and one blind old uncle got off with me..he heard me asking someone the way to Dadar station and he asked me if I could take him there…now with R in one hand sleeping and my backpack and me holding his other hand, I tried walking for a while but my hand holding R gave way (Its not easy carrying a 16 kg kid I tell you!) anyways, he realised I was struggling and he told me ‘Beta aapke paas bacha hai, aap jao, mein chala jaunga’ so I apologised and I let him and started walking ahead..that 10 year old boy’s mom looked at me and asked me what happened? and I told her that I couldnt manage all the three..she nodded..

Something made me look back and I realised he was struggling…I couldnt bear it and I went back to him and I said uncle I will take you and I woke up R and asked her to walk..she was so dazed that she just looked at me, and looked at that uncle and just started walking like a zombie..meantime that lady with her son came along and said, arey dont worry, you carry your baby, I will take him with me..and she took that uncle who profusely thanked me..

this is why I say that the world is still around…unknown good people helping unknown good people…

Anyways, R and I walked to Dadar station and we both got hungry..so went into an Udipi nad had pav bhaji and toast sandwich..

Got into a slightly crowded train at Dadar..R got a place to sit (4th seat) while I stood next to her..the girl who was sitting next to R was a sweetheart..she kept R entertained with songs on her mobile and what not!

Got off and we took a bus right home..

It was nearly 7 in the evening by the time we reached..

But what a super day…

While lying down in the night R snuggled next to me and said ‘Amma, maine toh aaj bahut enjoy kiya, we will do every Saturday?’

Ah! that made my whole day and I forgot the leg ache and the hand ache and what not πŸ™‚

I would recommend both the places to all parents in Bombay..definitely worth a see!

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About R's Mom

Not-so-new-mom
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74 Responses to And So We Saw The Stars

  1. The Bride says:

    Wow what a nice day. Quite inspiring. Hmmm wondering if you could have got a bus from Churchgate to Prince of Wales. Ooh and surprised that people have converted to calling it Chhatrapati Shivaji.

    • R's Mom says:

      I could have got a bus na…it just didnt strike me…I thought we will walk to see Flora Fountain and then I assumed it was nearby..guess I made the girl walk a bit eh?

  2. Awwww another cute post. Glad you guys had fun, Rm. Love your descriptions. πŸ™‚

  3. My Era says:

    Three cheers to RM and R for having a superb fun-filled, weekend with lots of information and yummy food to savor πŸ˜€
    Tight hugs to you RM for being a good human and helping the man in need despite having lot of things at hand πŸ™‚

  4. Journomuse says:

    Awwwwwwwwwwwww…no other words for the post!! So sweet Rs Mom…:)

    • R's Mom says:

      Thanks rey for your reco of the aquarium..just that we didnt have time and I had taken R to that place earlier..I must admit your post on South Bombay was the inspiration point for this trip πŸ™‚

  5. lifesong says:

    Lovely account RM and I must say that you were brave to venture out with R all alone in Mumbai summers πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ We have been planning to take my daughter to the planetarium too but I thought maybe she is a bit young for it. But after hearing your experience with R, I guess we will take her sometime.
    Another place which I would recommend for taking R to is the Nehru science Centre at Worli (http://www.nehrusciencecentre.org/). We have taken Cheebu there and she had a good time and fun. You also have parking space there so you can even go there by car. She will definitely enjoy there πŸ™‚

  6. Wow, what a super duper day out!! R really has a sweetheart of a mom who not only takes her to the museum and the planetarium but also carries her around when she gets tired πŸ™‚

    You know, RM, this post brought back some beautiful memories. The one and only time I’ve been in Bombay was as a ten yr old with my parents and brother, and I was reminded of the day we went to see the planetarium and the museum–such fun we had had!!

    • R's Mom says:

      hahaha! I am sure even you would do that :):)

      Glad to get back beautiful memories..may be when R grows up she will look back fondly to the saturday fun we had πŸ™‚

      Errr…high time you make another trip to Bombay..come on a Friday and leave on a Sunday night..we will go around whole day on Saturday and Sunday with the three kids what say?

  7. AaeKay says:

    How so very cute! Sounds like so much fun! πŸ™‚
    I will be visiting Bombay with my four year old niece! Will try taking her if I have the time πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚
    R is such a cutiepie and so active!! πŸ™‚

  8. Smita says:

    Ah!!! You walked from station to the museum?? wow!!! That is quite far….but yes I have always loved that side of Bombay. It has a charm which is infectious. However it has been ages that I went back there, will plan soemthing soon.
    And I must applaud your courage in making such a trip all alone with R because itni garmi ho rahi hai ki halat kharab ho jati hai re.

  9. summerscript says:

    Loved your saturday outing!! πŸ™‚ Reading this I felt like I was also with you the whole time πŸ™‚

  10. Mathangi Vijay says:

    Hey that was a super duper trip RM!! I am glad R enjoyed it.. I also want to do a similar just Mom and me trip for my son.. The whole day with him and him alone.. Lets see when I can do it πŸ™‚

  11. chattywren says:

    Amazed, you did all this in one day!! Wow, RM, you are one supermom too!

    • R's Mom says:

      arey I visited only two places rey..nothing great honestly…I know of moms who pack in much more..my problem was the lack of geography πŸ™‚

  12. varsha says:

    super duper f un !!

  13. Swaram says:

    Awww how sweet! Such fun tum dono hv had πŸ˜€ Hugss! I so feel like eating cucumbers, puchkas et..al on the roadside now πŸ˜‰

  14. DI says:

    Awww, so sweet! I wish , rather hope I do atleast a tenth of all this when Zo is a lil older 😦 I really really hope. I like your description of the food RM, only issue is it makes me way too hungry 😦

  15. Wow.. Looks like you had a wonderful day with R! Makes me want to take Keer and Kau to such places too! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

  16. So next Saturday again then same time same drill Wooo hoooo

    Fun hot day I would say .. R had fun

  17. What a lovely day RM ! Arey what long post? Just got over so soon 😦 I think adding what R was wearing, how she had tied her hair and everything will still make it too less !
    Loved your day RM ! Such a wonderful way to bond πŸ™‚

  18. Roopa says:

    Hi R

    I did a museum trip too with my son 2 weeks back.

    Bfast at Ideal Corner. Followed by Museum visit. The natural history section was a hit with son. I just loved the balance. Son was not too impressed with the rest. Lunch. Browsing some books (the real purpose- AC to beat the heat). Coffee and cake at Cafe Moshe. Followed by a ferry ride at the Gateway of India. A hour spent sitting and chatting near Gateway – reason for cardoning off the gateway and how ppl litter public places.

    Regards

    Roopa

  19. Smitha says:

    What a wonderful day! Such fun the two of you have had!

    I want the food! Your weekend posts can’t go without the food, can it πŸ™‚ To make us drool and wish we were in India πŸ™‚

  20. Varsh says:

    I’d been meaning to take my boy to the Museum and the Planetarium for the longest time, but A keeps ruining our plans. Your post gave me an idea of doing it all by myself, and I can do it on weekdays too (which means lesser crowds I hope)!
    It was a full girl’s day out huh? πŸ˜‰ Am sure after this R’s Mom must’ve earned some major brownie points with her daughter. πŸ™‚

  21. Smita T says:

    wow what a day… lets plan one with both our kids….

  22. Amit says:

    You were saying something about your husband being a superman? πŸ˜›
    Have you seen “The Incredibles?” πŸ™‚

    • R's Mom says:

      No havent seen that..is that a good movie?? Errr…I actually didnt get your comment…getting older and slower for sure 😦

      • Amit says:

        All I was saying that you are a super woman yourself, flying through the city all day. πŸ™‚
        The Incredibles is an animation movie. You will love it. It is about a family of superheroes. πŸ™‚

        • R's Mom says:

          oh!! *Smacks on the head* Seriously thanks πŸ™‚

          Its an animation is it…I think I have read about it somewhere…let me ask the movie king of the family RD πŸ™‚

  23. Jas says:

    That was amazing outing.. you did this all day? in the blazing sun? superb. and well documented too…

  24. Ashwathy says:

    Lesson learnt: Carry change with you at all times!

    I loved the way one father was teaching about the ancient stamps to his 8-9 year old daughter…I stood there listening and he realised I was eavsdropping listening
    Flirting with men there also! πŸ™„ πŸ˜›

    Pretty clean though one idiot of a lady made her kid pee on the floor in the western loo and made the entire floor wet Gah
    How moronic can you get?! God I hate such people! πŸ™„

    that 10 year old boy’s mom looked at me and asked me what happened? and I told her that I couldnt manage all the three..she nodded..
    I was just about to ask you why she could not volunteer to do it… and then I read the rest of your post πŸ™‚

    And personally speaking, I won’t recommend you taking R for an outing in this kind of heat. especially when you have to either walk, or take trains and buses (not even rick or cab). You could have tried a little earlier, or maybe a little earlier. Just my opinion.

    • R's Mom says:

      yaa..thats true…I should have change with me πŸ™‚

      No flirting rey..just increasing my knowledge which I can impart to the brat the next time we visit πŸ™‚

      Arey Ashwathy, honestly there is no other time I could fit in..and its like if I go to town side, I would rather be there and finish as much as I can..because going there is a task in itself πŸ™‚

  25. Kanchan says:

    Jamshedji from Karadi rhymes na? It’s such a cute one.

    And you did 2 outings in a single day? I get tired with 1 location and want to run back home for that afternoon siesta! Kudos to R, she is turning into a real champ, didn’t she just get back from climbing sabarimalai?

    • R's Mom says:

      yes yes that one only πŸ™‚

      yaa yaa she finished the Sabarimalai ka climb and uske basis pe I kept telling her…this is nothing…you did Sabarimalai whats a little museum churchgate to you hehee πŸ™‚

  26. Sreetama says:

    Superb post RM! Loved every bit of it. It reminded me of a day out with my dad when he took me to Nehru Children’s museum in Calcutta n Birla planetorium. When you come to Cal next, make a trip to those places with R, if you haven’t already.

    • R's Mom says:

      oh we are surely going there..infact I have already taken to R to those two places last year…I know she was only 2.75 years, but I am an enthused mom πŸ™‚ I plan to take her to Birla EVERY year..there is so much to learn πŸ™‚

  27. anisnest says:

    a big round of applause to RM.. I was all teeth when I read that last line.. πŸ™‚ kudos RM.. now all this encouraging words are for you to take R out often okay? Hope you enjoyed the day out with R too…
    a million no zillion hugs to you and the unknown lady for helping the blind man… I loved this incident.
    and heyyy I am literally on cloud nine for your mention about my post. this is the first time I am getting mentioned in your post and it is a great great great honor to me RM.. thanks a bunch my lady.. I am very glad that I have inspired to little bit too.. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ thank you so much…
    and 1 question – why didnt you take thali from that food store? it was already lunch time na? I didnt simply get it.. πŸ™‚

    • R's Mom says:

      Arey you and Adi totally inspired me rey..and I didnt take the thali because it would be a waste…I cant eat a whole thali by myself na…I need RD’s encouragement to finish off stuff..if it were pizza, we would have ordered double of course πŸ™‚

  28. Jazz says:

    Wow very impressed that you decided to take public transport only.. I often wonder why new parents in my family suddenly jump to giving a luxurious life to the kid, like travel in only AC train coaches etc etc. Me and my husband planned not to do it. Anyway, I digress.

    And what a fun day you and R had. Lovely. True, there is lot for kids to learn in museums and planetoriums. We visited the bay aquarium in Monterey last weekend, and I was amazed at how the kids were enjoying themselves. R is not even 4, and she has adventures every other day. She’ll love you for this blog. πŸ™‚

    • R's Mom says:

      no no Jazz..actually when RD is around, even we travel by car…but firstly he was not there, and secondly the price of petrol is so much that every kilometre seems a million to me πŸ™‚ thats why the public transport..honestly its much much much easier taking your kids by your own transport!

      Oh we had fun….

  29. ashreyamom says:

    wow.. that was a superday indeed.. yes, museums are interesting and informative too.. πŸ™‚

  30. Tanishka says:

    I simply love the south side…. Its amazingly beautiful… πŸ™‚

  31. Sounds like a fun day indeed. I still refer to it as Prince of Wales. Screw the CS for everything! Been there in college when we did Anthropology. Nehru planetarium brought back memories…been there twice as a child. Once with family and once with the school. If the science centre is still there, it was fun too. And what is it with mums making their kids pee on the floor??? Where are the manners?? That would annoy me no end! And then kids learn this and do the same at school. Nice to know good people exist in the world though…thanks for sharing it all…

  32. Scribby says:

    I like that phrase ‘idlis in the tummy’ πŸ™‚

    oh entry only for Parsees? sad no?

    dhokla? yumm I love it!

    good that you wrote this all here..it’s worth noting down…R would certainly enjoy recalling all this in future πŸ™‚

    and what a time you girls had πŸ™‚ I’m glad and waiting for my turn πŸ™‚

  33. Poulami says:

    “unknown good people helping unknown good people…”…u do realize that u r one of those genuinely good ppl who’s always there to give a helping hand πŸ™‚
    Loved reading this post…made me think back to the time when i was a kid and Mom n Dad would take me n my sis to the Kolkata book fair…the technical museums..science museum n wat not…didn’t realize it then..but all these things hav shaped what i am today…Dad has bever been much of a reading buff…but he wud make it a point to get us all sorts of novels to read…
    Sorry getting all senti abt ur post but it did bring back memories πŸ™‚
    n to think i spend my weekends lazing around n getting fatter…n there u r giving R the experiences she’ll cherish…awsum R’s mom!!

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