It’s still raining today, and I am so happy that we took the opportunity and got out yesterday and it didn’t rain all day! This wet, humid weather is gotta go…We left the house around 6:30am to avoid the rush hour traffic, after the babies were fed. We got on subway line 10, and there was almost no one in the train. With babies we really have to learn how to travel all over again since we have to look for elevators, ramps and high chair. When it was just Michael and myself, we could go and eat anywhere but now we have to ask the questions like “do they have good high chairs?”, “do they have non-smoking sections?”, “does the restaurant has enough space for our stroller?”.
There was a time when it was a real quest to find a public restroom, even better, toilet paper in Shanghai. These days tourists really take it for granted when they visit Asia, where you can find the nicest changing room, like the one we found in ifc Mall. I still remember the horror story my Mexican co-worker at Carrier told me once he was in Seoul, Korea: after he’s done using the toilet, he found no toilet paper in the restroom. Of course the next question from me was, “what did you do?” He said, “money”. I still remember this story especially when you look at the large numbers on a Korean bill, the smallest unit will be 1000 won, only equivalent to 1 USD but you get the idea, for someone who’s not familiar with the exchange rate, it could have been a big struggle, lol…
Anyway, going back to what I was just saying, my expectation isn’t that high and actually we’ve used probably no less than 10 different kinds of high chair, the Ikea simplicity, the Crowne Plaza rolling one, the Japanese booster chair that doesn’t hold the baby at all, and the Chinese step-stool-like chair, the Element Fresh all leather one, well so far I have to be thankful that our babies haven’t fallen out of anything (knock on wood). ifc Mall is the newest and nicest mall, for the moment, by 2014, when Shanghai Center is built, it will be 10 times even better than ifc, which is really stunning. We often wonder who shops at ifc, where you find the top brands from all over the world, and a conventionally grown avocado costs $5. I am just hoping that Shanghai Center, as one of the most sustainable building in the future, will incorporate the idea that when people shop, they want to eat there with their kids as well. It was really a disappointment at ifc since our favorite place Chez Nous closed part of the French cuisine section, of course the 88RMB semi lunch buffet was gone, so did the high chairs! We sat down at the ramen noodle take out place, and was told there’s no more noodle because something happened to the gas line – have you heard of any excuse that’s as lame? So even though we were willing to settle feeding the babies in the stroller there’s nothing for us to eat. Now we took the fancy elevator to the 5th floor, and tried Simply Thai, one of the best restaurants in Shanghai, no high chair, then we moved to the Japanese restaurant, not enough space and the babies were climbing out of the booster chairs. Now we hauled everything back in the stroller and decided to go across the street to Super Brand Mall, where everything was half the price, at that point, Michael and I were both frustrated and starved so we picked Dain Ti Hill, where we finally spotted two nice high chairs and just enough space to park our stroller.
We were pretty happy though with the breakfast right by the subway Line 2 Lujiazui station. It was the sister chain of KFC called 东方既白, there are many noodles snacks price at 6 RMB (less than $1) and they were actually pretty yummy and fast plus we had one high chair and a pretty large area. We also walked the Promenade, it was beautiful near the water, we could see the Bund in Puxi on the other side of the river, then we went to the Shanghai Aquarium, boys really enjoyed looking at the fish and the underwater tunnel.
We were exhausted when we got home, but it was good that ayi came and cooked dinner, it’s really a nice break even though sometimes taking two babies out is so draining and tiring, but they slept so well last night they must have been worn out as well 🙂