Singapore Adventure

Friday, February 17, 2006

Noogies and Other Hanky-Panky
by venitha

I was all set to post something about India today, but then I woke up to this adorable photo in my mailbox. Have you ever seen anything cuter?

Don't you just want to scritch her ears? Caress her soft head? Give her a gentle noogie on her snout?

How can you resist kissing her whiskered cheek? Taking her paw in your own and dramatically professing your undying devotion? Flopping down next to her and using her as a pillow while you read the paper with her?

What I would give to engulf her in a bear hug and never let her go.

I filled my wide laptop screen with the photo and stared tearily for a good ten minutes. She's right there. I can almost reach out and touch her. Almost.

Accompanying the photo were two wonderful videos of Maggie that prove Jeff and Sarah to be angels and that prove Maggie to be adored and happy and still the cutest sweetest most wonderful dog in the whole world. As if there was ever any doubt.

So without further ado, I'm drying my tears and listing my favorites of the advice we received for our trip to India:
  • Take toilet paper with you everywhere. Everywhere. Also wet wipes, sanitary gel, and a handkerchief. This is all good advice in Singapore as well.
  • Take Pepto Bismol (or Smecta) prophylactically. This sounds so much more exciting and risqué than it actually is.
  • Make vendors write amounts on charge slips out in English words as well as in numbers. Also check that all receipts clearly indicate rupees. 44 Indian rupees to 1 American dollar.
  • Insist on identification and a codeword from the person who picks you up from the airport. Apparently it's not difficult to get names of incoming passengers and then to intercept them without rousing suspicion.
  • If there is any hanky-panky with the driver, call me immediately. This, delivered gravely in a fine Indian accent by our friend Rashid, totally cracked me up. I tried to maintain a straight face while I assured him that there would be no "hanky-panky", words which, in modern US usage, imply something sexual and voluntary. Apparently my stifled giggles did not convey that I understood and shared his concern: he has since engaged a personal friend to drive us. I shall try to keep the hanky-panky to a minimum.