A vacation taken by a couple that is expecting a baby in order to allow the couple to enjoy a final trip together before the many sleepless nights that usually accompany a newborn baby. [Source: Wikipedia]
The plan was to get away somewhere just the two of us, to take some time out to reflect on life as we know it and how much it is going to change once our little one comes along.
At first we thought of going somewhere nearby but as fate would have it, Hubba’s work decided to send him away to Beijing during the last week or so of my second trimester, so I did the good wife thing and used up all my air miles to tag along. After all, they were only going to expire anyway! For the very first time, I got myself a return business class ticket to sit up front with Hubs and we made our way to China together.
We headed over the weekend before he was due in the office so we could have a little adventure before the work week. It was funny to think that Little O’s been to so many places before she’s even come out…. Seoul, Shunde, Sydney, the Sunshine Coast and this time Beijing. I wondered if it meant she’d be a good traveler in the future.
At first, I had grand plans of climbing the Great Wall but I came crashing down to Earth when I realized how cold it was at -12 degrees. So we visited the Summer Palace （颐和园）instead. Situated in the western outskirts of Haidian District, the Summer Palace is 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) from central Beijing. It used to be a royal park for the Emperor and his closest companions and is a World Heritage site.
Constructed in the Jin Dynasty (1115-1234) during the succeeding reign of feudal emperors, it was extended continuously so there were a multitude of pavilions, temples and halls to see. There were also little teahouses to visit, even if they only served fast food Chinois style. The place was rampaged by the Anglo-French allied force and was mostly destroyed by fire but in 1888, the Empress Dowager Cixi reconstructed it using embezzled navy funds. She spent most of her later years there.
Hubba and I were taken around by a tour guide who gave us a lot of historical information, testing my Chinese skills. I must say, having spent at least a month in China last year and having dealt with a lot of Chinese colleagues has improved my use of the language. I could understand 80% of what she was saying and had to act as translator for the husband, who was in turn, very impressed with the pseudo non-Singaporean he thought he had married. It is really amazing how the human mind works and the recesses you obviously have in your memory which you can dig deep into when required. Sometimes I really wish I’d studied Psychology.
The one thing that’s easy to forget when you’ve been married awhile is that we’re friends. Sometimes life gets so busy that we forget to talk so this trip was brilliant in that we got a lot of time to do that. We talked about how we hoped to raise Olive and all sorts of other random silly things. We also shared a lot of laughs.
It may not have been the most romantic trip in terms of where we went and why we were there, but it was the best Babymoon I could have ever hoped for.