After the madness last year, I had decided I was not going to do this any more. Lil D herself, a little more introspective this time, decided that she would like to spend her birthday by arranging for lunch at some orphanage, and the rest of the time with her cousins. I was fine with it, feeling quite glad of the sensible choices she had made.
However, this little voice in my head insisted that I do something else to make the day special for her. I didn’t really want to go overboard and do something exotic, but kept wondering if there wasn’t something small I could do to make her day more memorable.
Her building friends would anyway come over in the evening to wish her, and we would have to cut a cake. A few desultory attempts at thinking of games to play by the two of us ended up unsuccessful. We kind of gave up and decided we would just play it by ear when the friends came over.
That afternoon however, I had a brainwave. One of our favourite TV shows is The Amazing Race. How about making the kids play that? But how would I simulate the dash across continents, the challenges? My mind began racing and soon I came up with an outline. It didn’t involve much except quite a bit of printing. Luckily, Lil D had gone out, so I was able to wrap up everything before she returned.
She loved the surprise. Her friends too had a wonderful time. And I felt happy that I had listened to that little voice! 🙂
Here’s how the game went:
The kids (paired into teams) were given a sheet that had a list of “flights”. Just the From and To cities actually. They had to use this to get to their destination using the shortest route. A huge world map was available if they needed to check where the cities were.
Once they told me the correct route to the destination, they had “arrived”. They were given a puzzle to solve. If they solved it correctly, they were given the next destination, and they had to come up with the correct route to that. And so on.
So they started in India, and had to unscramble 10 Indian famous people/things.
Then they “flew” from Bangalore to Sydney, where they had to identify all Australian things in a Word search.
Their next destination was Beijing. Here they had to decode a Chinese saying using a Chinese-English decoder.
Off they went to Johannesburg then, and were met with a Crossword of African animals.
Then they flew to London, where they had to solve two easy-peasy English language riddles (the ones that go “My first is in this but not in that”).
And then they carried on to New York, where they went shopping! I gave them each 20 bucks, asked them to go to the little store we have within the apartment complex, and shop for the most number of things they could get within this budget. They had the most fun doing this! Luckily it was a Sunday, so the store was quite empty, except for these crazy girls dashing around.
Finally, they returned to Bangalore.
Everything was off the internet, so preparation was very easy. I loved how it all fell into place so quickly and that it worked out so well.
Anything for the peals of laughter, the sparkling eyes, and the crackling excitement, no? 🙂