Life in the army is fun and you meet so many new people! The only drawback is that, you also have to bid them adieu once your posting comes!Continuing our series on army wives, who move house so many times – they loose count! Today we speak to Anamika Nandedkar who is the heart and soul behind A Curious Army Wife!
How has army life treating you? What are some of the things that you love about army life?
I am in the process of getting used to life as an Army spouse. I am still discovering roles, customs, perks, and faults… The entire community of those living behind military station gates is different. Some things, that would initially seem impossible or irk me now seem like a special thing that comes only to faujis and their families — for instance, I never thought it would be possible for anyone to go out for an entire day without locking your house.
In the last station, it was so safe and people were so trustworthy that we never had any fear of getting robbed. Another example is that how our men get so excited about field postings while we wives dread it all the time. These are just some of the small quirky things that I am beginning to love about Army life.
How many places have you moved to? Which of these places have you enjoyed the most and why? How many times have you moved house since you married?
A couple of times. And of all those places, Dehradun was the best! Entire Uttarakhand is so beautiful! We had a lot of people who were of the same age group as us, so it was full-on dhamaal!
Were you working before you got married? If yes, how was quitting your job, and adjusting to the tight knit army community feel like? Did you find it difficult in the beginning?
Yes, I was working and couldn’t get a transfer to the city where my husband was posted at that time. So, I quit. Within 3 months, we moved to a different place which was a small town and jobs were scanty. After sulking initially, I took to freelance work and blogging. It kept me in touch with my work and I also got to enjoy a mini-break from work. I did not mind it much, basically because I knew I can go back to working once my husband gets posted to a field area.
Have you been able to keep in touch with friends made along the way?
Of course! That’s the beauty of fauj, isn’t it? We bump into each other somewhere or the other. And Facebook and Whatsapp have a major role in this!
How does it feel living this “nomad” kind of life? How different is it from everyone else’s? Which one would you have preferred?
Hahaha! That’s the thing you see, I have moved so many times because of my profession even before I got married. I used to dream of ending this nomadic life and ‘settle down’ once I get married. But kismat! I married an Army man, who moved anywhere and everywhere at the drop of a hat. But this entire process is so exciting, I now feel a tad bit sorry for my friends who have settled permanently at one location — they are missing all the fun of moving to a new place and experiencing life!
How to you cope with the long periods of absence of your soldier?
By finding work and keeping myself busy. Because khali dimaag shaitan ka ghar!
When you come to know that you have been posted elsewhere, what is your first thought?
Packing. Naukri. Experiencing new culture. In that order. Packing and unpacking freaks me out.
Your blog, ACuriousArmyWife reflects your passion for army life. How did you stumble into blogging? How long have you been blogging?
As I said before, I started blogging because I was on a break from journalism but felt the urge to write about the new things I was seeing in Army life as a new bride. That’s how the blog was born. That was my place where I could praise and rant about army wives’ life. It’s been four years now.
Have many prospective army wives approached you for advice on what life in the army entails? Any anecdotes to share!
Oh many! It seems a large number of girlfriends and new brides do comment on the blog or email me personally for advice. It made me feel like those agony aunts in tabloids! Initially, I would answer the questions if I felt confident that I can give the right advice. Then later, I decided to put those questions out in public domain on my blog through FAQs and ask for other army wives’ advice as well. But there is a point where even I can’t tell whether “to marry him or not”!
Army is famous for its formal parties! Any seriously funny party anecdote or faux pa you recall?
As a new bride in my husband’s unit, I was given a challenge of cooking lunch for all officers and ladies in the unit mess. I prepared the lunch and when the CO came into the mess, I went to him and said (the way mess havaldar used to say everyday) “Shriman, bhojan prastut hai”. My husband wanted to go underground with embarrassment.
Having been married for so many years does packing, moving and unpacking still seem like a daunting task to you?
OH VERY MUCH! It is one my worst nightmares. Thankfully, we don’t have a lot of furniture, but even with the rest of the things, it seems very frightening. Trunks, cartons, bubble wraps… I get panic attacks just thinking about it. Even if for the entire year I keep thinking that we don’t have enough stuff at home, at the time of packing every purchase made in those 12 months seems like a waste of money.
Before learning about EZMove, how did you choose a particular Packers and movers? How has your experience been with them? Would you be willing to try EZMove for your next move?
We chose a Packers& Movers on the recommendation of friends who had moved just two weeks before us. They came, they packed, they moved! Experience was good. I checked EZMove recently and I am really intrigued by what offers they have for armed forces’ families.
Do you have any hilarious moving day story to share? And lastly, since you are a moving pro, could you share a few tips or tricks with our readers?
It was anything but a happy occasion for us. It was an emotional day when we packed up our first house that we had painstakingly set up. Even the stray cat who had delivered kittens in our house was pissed and she was looking at us with eyes that labelled us No.1 betrayers of her trust. I am not a pro yet (though I know many who are capable of doing it alone and quite meticulously) and I am forever looking for tips and tricks. Got no wisdom to share now, maybe after 10 years…!
We at EZMove.in wish Anamika the very best for her blog!