Tuesday, January 20, 2009 ;
ds1 was invited to his classmate's birthday party.
I brought him there, ds2 stayed at home with Dh. We took a cab there, and when we reached, the meter hasn't even jumped yet, it was that near. Ha.
It was too far to walk in the wintry cold, and I had no idea where it was. But the cab meters here take quite a while to jump actually. Anyway I gave him more than the amount on the meter as a tip.
It's a 3.5 storey house, or villa, as they call it here. The classmate's dad is a teacher at the school.
ds1 didn't like the music at first, and he was overwhelmed by the large crowd in the house. Furthermore the theme was Kungfu Panda, so when we arrived, a lot of the kids were wrestling each other and doing a lot of kungfu actions.
Fortunately, he warmed up to it after that, otherwise he would be asking to leave every 5min.
Here he is with Z, his chess club friend. Z is also another teacher's kid. It seemed like all the teachers of the school were there. The Head of School, the Director and their families were all there.
Plus, the mommies and the kids from his class. Wow.
I noticed the balloon colours were the school colours too. And I take my hat off to them for being able to blow up and then tie so many balloons. They were all over the house. Here's ds1 with another female classmate whom he seems to get along pretty well with. She was one of the first few he said he wanted to invite to his own party. I think they were admiring the table decor. There was this 3D model with lollies and suckers arranged over it. Very pretty and eye-catching. Wouldn't be surprised if the mom made it herself, cos she is very good at craft. No chance to ask her at all, cos she was so busy with all the guests!
Another female classmate of his came up to him and held his hand. They then talked happily. When I wanted to take a pic, she was so shy. So funny.
Sigh, notice that all his classmates are taller than him?
There were no planned activities at this party. We just hung around while the kids played. The moms gathered together and talked. We ate some finger food. The kids are here eating some tortilla chips. These are his classmates too, the girl also one of the kids of a teacher in the school.
Lots of families of teachers in the school here. Inevitable here I guess, since this school is one of the few English schools around.
Then came cake cutting. What a beautiful family. The cake was good. We sang the Eng bday songs first, then the bday boy's dad asked for the Chinese version. And then they sang the spanish one.
After we enjoyed the cake, the kids were all gathered together for the pinata striking time.
Each kid had one strike. This is ds1 during his turn. He caused a split in the pinata, earning praise from his teacher (who is also the bday boy's dad). He was so pleased with himself.
The pinata is so lovely right? The mom made it herself.
When everyone had a turn, the pinata was pretty mutilated already. So the bday boy had the last few hits and when the loot came pouring across the floor, it was such a hilarious sight. The kids went mad and wild. There were so many spontaneous shrieks and everyone at once pounced onto the ground.
ds1 always seemed pretty slow during these moments. See, he's one of the few still standing around, wondering what he should do. At every bday party so far, he seems to always have very little bounty to bring home. Almost always one of the least. But he is always very happy cos he seldom get to have so much candy in a day.
There were rulers, erasers and such too, since I saw a lot of the other kids finding those, and they even required 2 bags to hold everything they found. Ds1 had a couple of candy and a spinning top. When he reached home, he voluntarily shared them with ds2. Very glad to see that, cos it's still pretty rare to see him so generous.
His Malaysian classmate followed us home for a short while as his mom would be late in picking him up so she called to ask me to bring him to my place first. I was prepared to take another cab but a German family gave us a ride home. They spoke English, Mandarin and German. So many families here are trilingual!
They are German so their mother tongue is German. They learnt Eng as a 2nd lang. Then they came to China for work, and they picked up Mandarin.
Better make sure my family is effectively bilingual, cos all these families put me to shame. My 3rd lang is languishing and I can't even speak it properly now.
In the morning (same day, Sat), we went to Home World (to buy groceries at Vanguard, a supermarket) and saw a stall selling firecrackers, fireworks etc. Many such stalls are having brisk business now.
This pic doesn't show it clearly, but it is under all the red lanterns. I only remembered to take a pic when we were already in a cab on the way home.
According to my ayi, the Han Chinese see the week before the Lunar New Year as 过小年, and it is like the New Year is already here. That explains why the firecrackers went off non-stop since Sun.
Every night, the popping and booming can last till midnight, and in the day, it will continue to go off once in a while too. Every where, from residents in our estate, to other places we go to, everyone seems to be lighting these up. It is getting really festive.
I am tempted to go out and get more varieties, cos we only have the traditional kind, strung in pairs. Let's see if I get the chance.
rainbows every day, do not worry for the morrow