Desperately needing a change of scenery from our hotel room, we've been talking for several days about going to a local mall. Now, anyone who knows us knows that we're not mall people. We've been known to attract the attention of security while trying to use unauthorized exit doors of Ikea, and Adam breaks out in a sweat at the mere mention of the word "mall." So that tells you how desperate we were, and how few places there are to walk around.
So we took a cab to an upscale (read: noisy, bright, overstimulating) mall, where we enjoyed an inexpensive food court dinner, went to a bookstore, looked at an Indian clothing store to see if something would fit me (nope, anything big enough to fit me looked like a shapeless housedress), and then headed back to the food court to feed Micah. When I reached in the diaper bag and discovered that I had included the bottles, but not the baggie with the nipples in it. Aaaaagh! Next thing you know I'm going to be one of those parents who leaves their kid on the roof of the car and drives off? Luckily, this American-syle mall had an American baby store, where I paid American prices for a new bottle, then asked the fellows at a coffee shop (a rarety here in a tea-drinking land) to run some hot water over it for me. Micah didn't really like this different style of bottle, but at least we got some formula in him.
We decided we had had enough and went downstairs to hail a cab.... only to find that for some reason, cabs didn't frequent this mall's "zone" and that the only way to get back to our hotel was a three-wheeled auto-rickshaw, which seemed both unsafe and highly polluting to baby's lungs. (These auto-rickshaws are pretty funny and a great hoot to drive in without a baby, but you breath in a lot of exhaust and it feels like you're in a video game each time you get in one.)
The mall's security chief called a cab company, and patiently (more patiently than me) waited on hold for 25 minutes just to speak to someone, and then found out the cab couldn't come for an hour and a half. He simultaniously had someone outside trying to find us a cab. Finally, just as we were about to give in to the idea of the rickshaw, one of the guards was able to get a regular city cab, not the fancier aircon'd cabs most tourists use. Even though the driver had never heard of our hotel before and didn't speak English, he got us back to our hotel for only 150 rupees, as opposed to the 320 that the hotel's cab had charged us. Our quiet hotel room never looked so inviting!
We're all resting up now for our big outing to the Embassy tomorrow, where our fate (having to stay here until early next week or through the end of the week) will be decided....