Sunday, March 25, 2007

New Toy

A recent addition to the OMatthes Clan. It sounds AWESOME.

Grandma O - Cooking India style

A funny thing happens when Mother and Daughter get together; and this proves that no matter where in the world you are the tradition is true.

A Perogy Making Festival led by the English Irish

Don't mess with the rolling pin bearing Germish Canadian

Olivia joined the Ukranian tradition, making it a Germish, Irish, English, Canadian Korean event.

Have a great weekend

In the tires again

It's been a fun weekend in Chennai.

Mamma 'O is seeing alot of things and I am sure once her head stops spinning she will have some good stories to tell.

We took Gage to play with his friend Topi from Finland; he is the second of his crew to leave India. Bye Topi and Gage really misses you!

They just hung out at Topi's house for a few hours before going to a movie, but the movie was done early (too scary) and when we got there I took Gage on the go carts. It was awesome. Gage's first time driving was really great and although he was quite nervous he was a pretty good driver (helmet on and cushion at his back so he could reach the pedals).

The track was tight, with an 'up' section and a 'down' section, the down section was really fast and shot you into a sharp left turn. Most of the time when I came around the corner I saw G getting pulled out of the tires, huge grin on his face and thumbs in the up postion. He loved it!

Ask G when you see him about the 'slow sign' and the wall, I will let him tell you the story as it is pretty funny.

While G was at Topi's house we drove down ECR to Ideal Beach and played by the Ocean and in the pool. I have some funny left eye going on and the combination of wind, sand, salt, heat and chlorine did not help out. Check out the funny picture. Today, one day later, I am clearing up already. I thought it might be Madras Eye, and if by Monday I am not almost clear I will get a doctor to give his professional opinion. More to come on the eye.

Peace from India

Monday, March 19, 2007


Safe Arrival
Currently Sun Tanning

I will add some pictures.....

-OMatthes Clan

Gold Bar

In case I forget, ask me one day about the story of the gold bar.


Saturday, March 17, 2007

Green, Short and Stubborn

Happy St Patricks Day!

To all my little Irish friends; and everyone else who pokes fun at them.

Have an awesome day and punt the leprachon if you see him!


PS Happy Birthday Hailey!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Gettin on in March

Wow. A spinning spike ball. I like it, its like our ever expanding universe - always moving.

Happy March 14th to everyone - a couple days late but better late than never. I am in a little shock at the date, I have to look twice everyday now as time is ticking fast!

B's Mom will be here soon, one more sleep until she gets the wet slap of Indias' humidity.

After about 5 days of a green pool our maintenance staff at the condo got their stuff together and the kids were eager to get in .... here is a great snap of G on his way to another Battle with the Koreans.

Jack, one of the Koreans, took a battle wound and with it 12 stiches to the forehead. He is totally ok but not allowed into the pool for another 5 days, so he and Emerson took some time out with the Play-Doh and made some cool shapes.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

One Hundred Rupees

It was a casual Sunday afternoon drive, all of our bellies full from the 'onslaught' of the Mariott buffet. The tradition we have installed into the grind of the work week is gluttonous and delightful, and with all of the things that happen in work, school and life all week I think the Sunday Brunch is well deserved to both kids and parents alike.

I gave a name to Sunday's feast - the Mariott Brunch Social Club in Chennai. Each week we find another family who discovered this gem of a buffett, and while the parents chat the kids can run free - a winner for all. It's great.

Back to the drive, the basis of this post. I always like to take a little different way everywhere I drive in Chennai, it lets me either get lost and see something I haven't yet or it lets me confirm in my head that I know my way around.

I took a new street, came to a questionable intersection, turned left. Left was not right. Left was the wrong way on a one way street. Brandy knew it right away, but I just went with it as I had already committed to the turn.

Got to a light, and tried to go right (not happening) and then tried to go left to get out of there.

As I fumbled with the turn signal I saw a traffic cop waving (see older post for explaination on 'waving') and I made a few deliberate hand gestures back. I knew Brandy was right since no cars were piling up behind me.

Pulled over, window down, traffic cop arrives and says 'no entry. 100 rupees fine. No entry.'

I looked behind us and made sense of it, it was a one way street. 'Ok, ok, ok. No entry. What about 2 wheelers? I only followed a 2 wheeler.'

'Where are you going sir?'

'That way' (pointing right, towards home).

'No, no entry. 100 rupees fine.'

I reach into my pocket and pull out a 100 rupee note, and try to hand it to him. He refuses to take it, and waves me up the street a little.

He walks over to the left (passenger) side of the car and repeats '100 rupee fine. No entry'.

Again, I give the 100 bucks to B in the passenger seat and she tries to hand it to him which he refuses. 'Where are you going?' he repeats.

I point and explain, and he happily tells me the exact route to get there. No money, no fine, no license, no problem.

As we drive away I felt somewhat confused. Why wouldn't he take the money? Even if he just thought I was a dumb tourist, he told me the fine and then refused payment!

Still love it here.


Tuesday, March 06, 2007

The Holi Album

It was fun! I am still pink.

Thanks to all who joined.


Sunday, March 04, 2007

Festival of Colour

I even spelt it like a Canadian.


What a crazy thing these Indians do; another festival based on the death of someone evil. The killing was done by a god, much different than other religions where god does not kill. Good guy kills bad and everyone rejoices.

Holi. This is the festival of colour.

We were pleasantly surprised by some friends stopping by with paint, and the celebration began. It was about an hour of throwing, smearing, rubbing, lauging, dumping, and colouring. What a blast!

After it all calmed down we took a look around at the carnage and started the clean up. I proceeded into the shower and scrubbed and soaped and cleaned and worked and thought I did a great job getting all of the paint off. I got out of the shower and BAM I was still pink! Jane popped by later in the night and totally got stumped by me at the door; she just stared with a confused look on her face...she then said what happend? Were you in the sun for too long today?

I think it is an excellent way to look on Monday morning I am only guessing how many laughes I will get at the office tomorrow.

Gage is still green like the hulk, and Meghan said she is still red as ever. Just check the pics for the before shower shots.

Just another reason to love this place!!

Friday, March 02, 2007

Gadget Alley

It's been about 5 days since my power supply went. I have some feeling of loss; a sense that something is missing. It is actually funny but I had become slave to the grind. A helpless soul only made one through my HP Pavillion Notebook.

And since 5 days have gone by I have started a new love affair; nothing to put my marriage in jeopordy - just a little thing on the side. It is white, 12" wide and is called a Mac. Yep the backup I brought out here to the heat of India is in use, and until my 17" friend returns to the call of duty I am getting closer everyday to the little iBook that could.

I never thought I would like it, and when I first started it up I cringed with distaste at the pretty white keys and the smooth curves on the body of this G4. The keys felt funny, the OS is not windows. This is OS Ten. And after 5 days, I know where to find the files I save. I know where to find the notepad and the network settings. I feel like that sense of security I have with windows is not there yet. But I could get it.

I tried to use HP to find a new power supply. I called and called and called and called. I went from support center to support center; from USA to Canada to UK to South Africa to Dubai to India. I got nowhere. USA only ships to themselves or to Canada; Canada only ships to Canada. So its 10 days plus the time to ship to India from some lucky friend in Canada. All other sites don't have any in stock; and were't about to bring one over the ocean for me. India doesn't sell the 17" models, which means I can't get replacement parts for one, I think it's because they are all too big to be carried by these 120lb locals.

I have a friend at work who knew a place called Gadget Alley. I decided to give it a shot.

So my trip to Gadget Alley was awesome. It is an area of Chennai where you can get just about any electronic device, and it was soo busy I was in awe of the place. I didn't have my camera, but I will go back and camera will be there to preserve and share the memory.

I went with Rajesh; an IT guy on the team from Santec. He told me he has a guy there, and we went to see his guy. Once we made our way to his 'shop' I was welcomed, we sat together behind the counter and had a tea. This was big. To get a tea and sit behind the counter was big.

I told him my story, of loss and pain. Of my 180W power adapter that blew and how HP hasn't been able to find one anywhere this side of the continent. Of course I could ship it from Canada or from USA to Canada to India; but I wanted to try and get it here first. Gadget Alley was the contingency plan, since it seemed to have about everything and everywhere else was failing.

So 'guy' put down the empty tea cup and got one of his guys to take the power supply and seek. He was back in about 15 minutes; a little Tamil conversation; and he went out again. I was told that so far nothing but he is going to check some more stores.

Seeker guy comes back in another 15. Tamil talking. Head bobbling. Shop guy says no one has one, but he will fix it. I am 99% sure I can do it he says; and if not we will order one and within 10 days you will have it.

Done. Do it. Make it so. Take er up Scotty.

I tell him OK, see what you can do. I will see you Friday afternoon then? And Rajesh tells him over 'Friday. See you Friday.'

Today is Friday, and I am Mac'n it up from home. Tomorrow - he said give him until tomorrow. So I am giving him until tomorrow to deliver a fixed power supply - or else I will have 10 more days to fall in love with a Mac.