Just a disclaimer...this blog will never, ever be politically correct. Consider yourself warned.
Yesterday, it was about a zillion degrees below zero and some friends and I decided to meet at the New York State Museum to walk with our strollers and then give the kids a chance to play. There is a great discovery area for children and then a fantastic carousel that you can ride for free. They "suggest" a donation, but we're all stay-at-home moms...we're poor. The parking by the museum is rough on a good day and apparently Tuesday is a busy day there. We had all circled the museum numerous times to find a spot. I got a great spot and then pumped almost all of the quarters I stole from my husband's dresser into the meter, giving me nearly three hours to enjoy some exercise, some playtime and some lunch. Two of the other moms had found one hour spots, so they probably pumped the same number of quarters into heir meters and they'd need to run out hourly to move their cars. Another poor mom marveled at the great spot she found a the top of the hill. She was crushed when we told her it was a tow-away zone. We were discussing our options (stay...walk somewhere else) and wondering exactly what made the museum so popular on a Tuesday, when then mother of all frights appeared....a bus load of Asian tourists . I have been to enough tourist destinations, and seen enough bus loads of Asian tourists descend. I have never wanted to leave a location so quickly. I could not get my poor toddler buckled into the safety of her stroller fast enough. The tourists began rushing the lobby, cameras in hand, shoving anyone and anything out of their way. My maternal instinct reared up as if we were being chased by a grizzly. I feared my two small daughters would be caught in the stampede, their little lives compromised for a photo opp in from of the info desk (better take a picture in front of the poster of the carousel, before we head to the real one three flights up). I lost 2 1/2 hours of meter time. Small price to pay for my life.
I had a recent experience in Gymboree (the kids clothing store) with an Asian woman...maybe a tourist, maybe not, but definitely a transplant. I was scouring the clearance rack, since I can only afford Gymboree clothes on clearance (see above reference to free carousel). The local Gymboree has a small store and an even smaller clearance rack, but they manage to cram things on it pretty good. I was holding my baby, who was probably nine months old at the time, and this woman came barreling around the rack, whipping stuff off of it. She scared the living daylights out if me, and when she nearly impaled my daughter with a plastic hanger, I high-tailed it out of there. Asian tourists scare me. They move in swarms at lightning speed and plow down anyone in their path.
There must be a lot of nightclub fires in China.
The only experience worse was when my husband and I hiked up Cadillac Mountain in Maine. We had opted to hike rather than drive because we thought would appreciate the view better. Respectable, eh? We set out, up the mountain, passing judgment on all of the carloads of people who were driving up there; trudging our elitist selves up the mountain; gloating about how much better the view would be for us. We arrived at the top, basked momentarily in the amazing view that we had so righteously earned, and turned in time to witness the disembarking of a bus load of Canadian teenagers. Lunch bags in hand.