Sunday, May 26, 2013

China Day Thirteen - Don't Get Too Comfortable

Have I mentioned that we are in a five star hotel?  This morning, I got to take a shower under one of those shower heads that fall down from the ceiling.   I’ve wanted to try out one of these since the first time I saw BATHTASTIC on DIY.  …It’s actually not that great.  With a wall spicket, you can soap up while the hot water hits your back, but with the water falling from the ceiling, you have to move outside the flow quite a bit to wash.  Thank you Marriott, for saving me from all that envy. 

We also had breakfast at the largest, fanciest, uppity-est breakfast buffet EVER.  They actually had ten different counters and five manned stations including a pancake/waffle bar, a select your own omelet fillings bar,  a noodle bar and a juice bar (novel, but if you are going for taste, get a coke).  AND, just to impress on you what a high-class joint this is, the chocolate doughnuts were actually covered in real, gourmet, melted chocolate-- not the chocolate food product with suggesting influences of plastic and Big Lots, but real, dark, bittersweet, thick, creamy, melted chocolate, with a hint of salted butter, just to keep it soft enough to spread.  Beware my loved ones, Momma’s moving in on your doughnuts. 

Everything was wonderful until we got the bill.  We were told breakfast was included with our room, but apparently not THAT many breakfasts.  They charged us for four buffets ($100 or $25 each—that is US Dollars, not yuan….oopsie!)  The front desk promised us that this was a mistake and we won’t be charged, but I’m not going back into that place until we are sure.  It was a yummy doughnut, but not $25 worth of yum…. Well, maybe not.

We spent the morning moving rooms.  They had given us two rooms half-a-hotel away.   The kids were too far off, so we got adjoining rooms for the first time since we came here.  This is SO NICE.  Logistically, it’s just MUCH easier to have the other kids adjoining us.  We were so happy to be together, we spent the morning just hanging out and playing.

About noon, we were planning to take a walk to a local mall, but just as we got all the kids shoes on and the computers locked in the safe, QingBei tugged Matt over to her crib and asked to be put inside.  It was her nap time.  I had totally forgot.  She laid down for a minute, but as soon as the other kids left the room, she threw a royal fit and started to scream and stomp her feet.  I hate to reward that kind of behavior, so I thought I’d call them back in as soon as she calmed down, but she never did calm down.  I finally asked Bill to come and he stayed with her until she fell asleep.  –Good Man.

After that, we all went swimming in the hotel pool, which was wonderful.  There are two 25 meter lap lanes, a cold pool and a hot tub.  There is a marble/mahogany locker room with a sauna, steam bath and two whirlpool tubs, one hot and one cold, and there is a fully equipped exercise/weight room.  Bill has two triathlons coming up the Saturday and Sunday after we get back home—as in, we land on Friday and the races are Saturday and Sunday, so he has been training steadily, but all he could do up to this point was run.  Now he can swim and bike as well.  When he saw the whole health club set up, Bill's eyes lit up like his favorite fast food sign. He was as happy as I’ve seen him since we arrived.

We spent the evening at a local mall.  It was so nice to be there that I got too comfortable.  While we were walking, I noticed a woman facing us and pretending to text.  I could tell she was taking our picture.  I was in front and I walked right past her.  We almost touched shoulders.  I looked back and saw that she had taken a picture of me.  There was my face, right in her phone screen.  As I was thinking to myself, “Really?” I noticed her zoom in on QingBei who was walking behind me, holding Bill’s hand and she took a picture of QingBei’s face as well.  By the time I realized what was happening, it was all over and Bill was herding me forward.  I walked on, realizing too late, that she took my baby’s picture so she can show it to her friends and discuss the freak child she saw in the mall.   

I know I have to forgive this woman, but all I could think of at the moment was that MY baby’s face was on her cell phone and I wanted it off.  I considered grabbing her hair and smashing the phone into her face, but I realized that would be too violent.  It would not be good to make Nanning News at Nine the day before I get my second baby.  Then I thought about taking her phone and smashing it on the ground, but I figured that might attract the police as well.  My options were limited, since she probably didn’t speak English.  I finally settled on fuming.  I was so mad, I was shaking.  The only reason I didn’t turn around and engage her in a little incomprehensible chat was because Bill kept driving me onward.

One of my parenting mantra's is: "Lose the Battle, but Win the War."  After that, I was back on my toes.  I stationed all the family around QingBei so that all she saw of the rest of the mall was my kids tiny butts.  Then I took up the rear and scanned both sides of the aisles the rest of the evening, looking for people holding cell phones pointed my way.  Twice I noticed women standing up to take our picture, so I gave them my livid-mamma look and they both sat right back down.  I also put my hand in front of her face a few times as I saw people trying to take her picture from far away and derived great pleasure giving them the same look as well.  Bill kept telling me to let it go and not to stay mad at that woman for the entire evening, but I’m certain I won’t.  I’ll be mad at her for at least a month.   

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