Saturday, March 14, 2015

Not an SUV

I won't lie I LOVED my expedition.  I loved how high up I sat.  I Loved that I was one of the bigger vehicles on the road.  I loved how safe I felt.  I loved that I could load the dogs, the boy and all his trappings up and go wherever we needed to go.  And  even though I thought I would never use it I loved the built in GPS.  And don't even get me started on the seat heaters and coolers!  I miss it.  I miss being able to load up and run to the store really quick if I just need one thing.  I miss how easy it was to shop and have room for whatever I bought without worrying if it would fit or not.  I was spoiled, I admit it.  I took the convenience  for granted and I am not sure I appreciated how nice it was until it was gone.  It would not be a good fit for Taiwan.  First of all it would be a beast to parallel park, and that was if you could even find a hole big enough to try and put it in.  The regular parking way!  The car we have, is considered big for here and it's a sedan.

I don't mind walking. I like to walk, which is a very good thing because I do a lot of it.  I walk to the store almost everyday to pick up one thing or another.  We walk to restaurants if we want to go out to eat.  Zane & I walk to the park to play.  I walk around to just explore our city.  I have seen lots of things that I would have otherwise missed by driving or riding in a car.  Zane loves it!  I don't miss driving, but I miss how much easier some things would be if I did drive.

 John came home with a TON of orchids from the International Orchid Festival.  The Flowers were beautiful but just in little plastic pots that you would find at a greenhouse so I needed to repot them or at least put them in containers for display.  I had nothing to do any of this with at our apartment.  I knew that I could ask Eric to drive me and we could run to Home Box (think distant relative of Home Depot) and pick up what we needed.  I also knew that Eric was busy with the visitors that were in town this week at John's office so I didn't want to ask him to drive me a couple of blocks when  I could walk it.

This is the part where planning comes into play.  If I am going to buy more than I can carry in my over the shoulder shopping bag I have to make sure that it can fit in the under basket of the stroller, which isn't very big. Before Zane and I leave the apartment we have to make sure that the stroller is empty of any non-essential things. Kinda like a mom's car, our stroller becomes a catch all over several days.  You'll find donut wrappers, extra shoes and jackets, a stray fry here and there, goldfish swimming loose, and water bottles.  Of course I always have to have diapers, wipes, packages of kleenex (for noses and public restrooms), Zane's water cup and sunglasses.

SO before we head out for a planned trip that will require extra space I strip it down and then we head out.  Route is important as well. Some of the sidewalks in our neighborhood are great, some are ok and then there are some that are just not even useable with a stroller.  I have to think about traffic at the time of day we are going and what the sidewalks are like on the way to my destination. I can get to Home Box a couple of ways, one of which has no sidewalks which would not be my first choice in the afternoon - early morning, no problem, there is no traffic.  So I chose the second route which includes all categories of sidewalk.  We have great sidewalk in front of our building and then there is about a block with no stroller friendly sidewalk so we are forced to walk in the street.  Now  if everyone followed the rules and only drove or parked their cars and scooters where they are supposed to, walking on the street would be no big deal....they do not.

There is a red line between the sidewalk and street that lets you know you should not park there, but they do.  I could be pushing the stroller on the street, dodging parked cars and scooters but still kind of off the road,  and someone might decide to parallel double park next to the sidewalk just beside someone else illegally parked which makes us walk even farther out into the street.  Yikes!  I'm even fine with that most of the time now, until a bus doesn't want to even move over an inch.

Once we survive that block and so far we always have, there is a nice stretch of sidewalk for the last block of the trip.  By nice I mean it's wide enough, even with the scooters parked on the sidewalk to get the stroller through, and there are only 2 places where the sidewalk has a step down and back up. And then we are there.  This particular day, when I loaded up, I even surprised myself with how much I could get in the stroller and carry home.  Luckily my companion was in a good mood , which is a huge plus.  He also knew that McDonald's was just around the corner.

This is what I bought!

With the stroller packed full, my shoulder bag with as much as I could carry and happy meal balanced on the handle bars we made our way back home.  We made it upstairs.  Unloaded our purchases and had a cheeseburger.  Repotted some orchids and had a nap! I miss my Expedition, but I'm enjoying my adventure.  Almost everyday I surprise myself with how I can adapt and make things work that otherwise I would probably not try.  Don't get me wrong when we get home I will most likely be seen cruising to Home Depot in some sort of SUV; but I also know that if I had too,  Zane and I could head out with our stroller and pick up what we need.

Orchids are everywhere in the apartment now.

With all the marble and the flowers it feels a little like a funeral home! 

I ran out of pots and had to use a mixing bowl....I like it. 

If you like what you just read please click to send a quick vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs- The best mommy blog directory featuring top mom bloggers


  1. Thank you for letting me relive som of my Taiwan experience. Love the orchids, especially the one in the mixing bowl.

  2. Home box lol. You make me miss living abroad!!!! It's so interesting to read about cross-cultural experiences from a former SUV-driving SAHM perspective.