Sent off some proofs and corrections to Pantheon at 10 A.M. and joined the von Leydens for a visit to their simming-pool club where Westerners and Indians (the latter, mostly Parsees) were sitting around under parasols. At the table next to the one at which we settled there was a company of Hindus, including the young woman who turned out to be the sister of Rama Mehta. When she heard my name she said, "You are a friend of my sister. I am reading your book. It is inscribed, 'To Rama, with love...'!" Apparently Rama and her husband will be coming to Bombay next week.
November 7, 1954
The family was invited to the birthday party of an elder coleague. We had to miss it. We three passed the front of her house, and we probably would've walked much faster if I hadn't been carrying the child at such a slope. The child was mostly the reason why we had to skip the party. Her eyes were sore again and we wanted to make an appointment with the doctor for the weekend, but before that, I felt we had to close the deal with the new household help. We were off to meet the candidate.
Our house is far from tiptop, the electricity needs to be fixed, the child's room hasn't been cleaned for weeks, bulbs busted here and there. The toilet could use a new faucet. It's not a total mess, but we're not comfortable with it. My wife dressed the child up with an ensemble in mind, but because a shoe was missing here and a sock missing there, we had to resort to violet shoes to go with her orange and yellow outfit. We failed to take the wind into account, so when we noticed it, my wife plucked the nearest pair of baby glasses which was pink. The only hat that the child would tolerate (even this only partially, and with some thorough negotiation) was violet and white with a sunflower sewn in. Her bib was green.
She's a baby I know, she'd get away with motley or worse, but since I was never avant-garde nor a practicing clown, I felt like an irresponsible parent. Anyway we met the candidate. I was not sure if she was forthright, but even if she were I didn't think she's a fit. I don't consider myself too meticulous in these types of choices - and with classes opening next week, we can't afford to be - but even then, the things she presented disturbed me.
The child's asleep in the cleanest room. We'll meet the doctor later.