Monday, May 31, 2010

The Shis on the Great Wall

Another highlight of Wayne's father's trip to Beijing was his parents' first-ever visit to the Great Wall of China, Rosabelle's second, as we visited the same place, Mutianyu, that we brought my family to when they came here last June.

First off, I'm glad the Minnie Mouse cap I bought for Rosabelle came on time for her to wear it yesterday as shield from the sun. She goes 'mao' as she can't really pronounce 'mouse', and even sleepily pointed at the Minnie Mouse on my T-shirt once after waking from her nap and before wanting milk, haha! So I decided to get her a proper 'mao' (mouse) cap - again, girls being girls, pretty in pink as we waited for the adults to offload (i.e. go to the washroom) before we made the trek. It was a smooth journey, and not as may people as we thought. We'd actually wanted to go on a Friday, but as I was nursing a flu, thank goodness we put this off till Sunday, as the weather was really great - not too hot, a bit cloudy (though with a slight drizzle at one point).

We set off as soon as Rosabelle woke up as Nai nai prepared steamed egg with prawns for me to feed her in the car. Nai Nai took care of her whilst Wayne went to purchase the tickets. She went 'Wa wa 多' when she saw alot of male visitors, haha...
Here they are looking at ants - 大蚂蚁 and 小蚂蚁 (and a better view of her new cap).
Here is a classic '看妈妈' warning from Nai nai whenever Rosabelle does something wrong - Nai nai normally does not have the heart to reprimand her harshly (think all grandparents have a soft spot) and will use me to threaten her, haha!
And then we took a skylift up to the Great Wall (yah, we cheated), where brave Rosabelle held on to the handrail with both hands and did not struggle/move around when I was carrying her in my arms. It was actually quite dangerous, come to think of it, as she does not have any seatbelts, and thank goodness she was well-behaved. I even wanted to take photos but Wayne was so disgusted with my blatant lack of safety that he confiscated the camera from this mamarazzi. -_-

Ye Ye and Nai Nai were on the skylift in front of us but only Nai Nai waved back at us when Rosabelle called - turned out Wayne's father has a fear of heights and had his eyes closed throughout the 5-minute ordeal for him.

And so we reached, with Wayne starting the ascent with the 11kg load....

We had some snacks like bread, milk and noodles, and Rosabelle had steamed potato and sweet potato we'd prepared earlier - just to make sure we had enough energy before the climb.

There she is, one of the smallest/youngest climbers around....
As the roads were steep/rocky, we held her hand whenever she came down, and I decided to squat to get to the same level as her...
And she decided she also wanted to squat like us...
Some of the steps were low, and just nice for her to practise her climbing.
An elated Ye Ye who thinks it'd only take us 30 minutes to get to the cable station to bring us down (we took like about an hour...). Rosabelle stretching out her arms for Daddy to carry her - quite clever as Wayne was the fastest amongst us in spite of the load...

Though Nai nai and I took turns to carry Rosabelle at times, alot of the steps were high and/or steep, so thank goodness for fit and healthy Daddy!

We also ventured up to one of the viewing galleries and waved at Ye ye and Nai nai from up there. Wayne carried Rosabelle up to see a donkey outside, and she can now remember and say 'donkey' very well, heh! Just as well she saw a live one as she always referred to donkies in pictures as a horse.
Their first trip ever to the Great Wall of China, a must for any Chinese citizen...
And with their granddaughter at that... they must feel so happy...
Wayne's Dad likes to strike poses, asking Wayne to 'take one with the sunglasses, another without, then one half-body, another a full shot...', as he always likes to look far away - a very classic 70's pose.
Here, Rosabelle even picked up Ye ye's faraway gaze...
The sun was up most of the time, but it was not scorching hot, though there was a passing cloud that Ye ye warned us about ('Let's hide here and wait for that to pass,' said Dad. 'What cloud? Just move on!' said Mum... and she admitted her fault after we had to turn back less than 1 minute on, and had to whip out the lone brolly I had the foresight to bring... (yes, I was that prepared, but I actually forgot to bring my daughter's water bottle and she had to drink from our mineral water bottle and the cup from the hot water flask...yikes!).

The younger-generation Shis...
Don't the three of them look so very alike?
My mother-in-law, the most patient and kind that anyone can ask for... she has to be - she has put up living with me under one roof for more than two months! Rosabelle was too engrossed eating the seaweed I gave her...


And we finally posed for a full family shot.When we reached the cable station, we were all happy as larks, but almost fainted when they said our return ticket for the skylift cannot be used for this. Luckily they said we could get a refund, but needed to purchase separate tickets for the cable car. Phew!

Wayne's Dad was apprehensive and looked down most of the time, but he said it was much better than the skylift - Rosabelle was more interested in exploring around the cabin, heh!
After that, we headed back and went to a restaurant for lunch as I fed Rosabelle in the car first - she had fish cereal with wheatgerm, and enjoyed her peas/corns, topped off by kiwi fruit. By the time we got going, it was close to 3 pm, and I was so tired out I fell asleep before Rosabelle did - she was reading magazines in the car and slowly dozed off, yabbering just seconds before. I in fact asked if she wanted to drink milk before she slept and she just smiled cheekily at me and shook her head - self-weaning soon?!

As the chiropractor's was on the journeyback, we stopped by there first to get my neck pain cured, and the closing of car doors made her wake up with a start crying, thwarting my plan to leave her in the car with Nai nai as Wayne brought me in.

In the end, the whole entourage went down and Ye Ye and Nai Nai played with her for close to an hour whilst we got our treatment, before we headed on home. It was too late to cook dinner so we just stopped by home for me to get her fruit for dinner and food scissors/bib before we went to 花家怡园 for dinner.

When we reached home, it was more than 12 hours since my last feed and I was so engorged I had to hand express about 60ml for her to drink. Oh dear, it's been awhile since I last 'leaked'... *blush*.

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