Friday, June 8, 2012

Shopping adventures

We set out this afternoon with Frederic, a colleague of NZ's who has been living in Wuxi for the last 6 years to have him show us where the best places to buy housewares and day-to-day necessities were. He took us to a pizzeria, which turned out to be Papa Johns, a totally American pizza chain. Only, in China, Papa Johns is a sit down, dine in restaurant. Crazy, right? The pizza was delish. A taste of home.

From Papa johns we loaded up in Frederic's car, cranked the A/c ( it's a very muggy 90 degrees farenheit today) and set out for METRo, which is the equivalent of COSTCO or Sam's club in the U.S.A. One must have a business account to gain membership.

We parked the car and met with Frederic's interpreter and a driver from his Company who brought a van to help transport our purchases to our apartment. This my friends, was our entourage. Five adults and a baby, shopping together for housewares. It was nice to have Frederic's advice on what brands of toothpaste to avoid (bleach?!) as well as Irene's assistance in dechiphering the difference between shampoo, conditioner and lotion. Lord knows I'd have a hissy fit in the shower if I had unknowingly purchased three conditioners instead of one shampoo, one conditioner and one lotion. It could (and probably will) totally happen.

Our biggest obstacle today, aside from deciding if a king size bed was the same as a 2 meter mattress, were Sal's fans. What was so endearing the first 24 hours has quickly become my pet peeve. People just can not leave their hands off of him. We were in an aisle making silverware decisions, and I had just gotten Sal to sleep. I had my hand on the stroller, but turned my back to help NZ choose between two patterns and when I turned around just seconds later, a Chinese woman had her face wedged in under the canopy of his stroller, and was touching his face!

I turned into mama Bear and said a very clear "no!" and pulled his canopy back down, but the damage to his only afternoon nap was done. He spent the rest of our METRO shopping trip on NZ's shoulder so that he could police the touchy McTouchersons. It's seriously a major issue we will have to overcome. I think they mean well, but never in a million years would that type of personal space invasion take place in the states.

Boundaries do not exist here.

This is clear.

From METRO we made it over to IKEA which just opened a couple of days ago. For those who are wondering, IKEA in China is just as confusing as IKEA in the U.S.A.. We felt right at home. We ended up buying most of our linens and bath goods there, as well as a crib and changing table for Sal. I'm not too wild about the mattress we found, but it was the firmest one available. Nick found a super neat rug for Sals room, that has a little road printed on it. I imagine in a year or two he will be driving little cars over it.

Right now, Sal and I are back at the hotel, in our nice air conditioned room, taking what I hope will be a nice long afternoon nap to make up for the two he got slighted on earlier today.


  1. just read this to Granny... she is so glad Baby has a crib :)

  2. I love reading about how it is over there! Keep the blogs coming!! =)

  3. Ahhhh girl!! Miss you. I'm glad I can read about your new journey here.