A train ride was the selling point of the whole endeavor. It's about a 40 minute ride from our local station to Central, and for about half of that time, riding on a train is the most funnest thing ever conceived of in the mind of man.
Then it becomes wretched drudgery that we are cruelly inflicting on our children. How many more stops left? Are we there yet? Why did you make us take the train and not our car?
But after a slightly longer trip than we'd expected--having to change trains--we made it! Ava and Nate loved the red lanterns in the trees,
and this freaky clown game that I will see in my nightmares tonight.
I know. Terrifying, right? Oh, and get this!
Rats. Sheesh. Everywhere I go. So apparently, Chinese culture is getting in on the act now and tormenting me, too. Do you know what it feels like to be mocked by, like, a billion people? Thanks, China!
So, how did it all pan out? Overall, I'm glad we went. The kids had fun. But Jason and I were pretty underwhelmed by the whole affair. I was expecting a lot more activity, market stalls--just more hoopla than there was. The city has about 3 weeks of events planned for Chinese New Year, so I know today isn't the whole deal, but we expected something more. How do you say "Meh" in Chinese?
Grace was pretty much over it from the start.
So, let's see...what else happened? There was a group of people protesting against the Church of Scientology outside the train station, and I got to explain to Ava what a protest is and what Scientology is. That took some skillz. There was a nice-enough young guy next to me on the train who kept trying to get Grace to grab his finger and then wanted to hold her. (I pretended not to notice when he put out his hands. Look, I know I have an adorable baby who smiles at everyone, and I know she is like a ray of golden sunshine into the lives of others. But a mom's gotta draw the line somewhere, and a stranger holding her on a train seems like a good place to me.) Oh, and also the diaper bag tumbled off the stroller into a busy intersection and I said a swear word. I don't think the kids heard though--their sugar high was causing the blood to rush through their ears. Phew.
And that was our big day out. Highs, lows, trains, noodles, fun, me cussing, mud, chasing pigeons
and so, so, SO much more.
Happy Chinese New Year! It's the year of the tiger.
Ni hao and stuff!