Taipei is kind of empty right now, since it is the New Year and some people take off pretty much the entire month for a Holiday/vacation. There are still a decent amount of people here, but not nearly as many as when Jeff was here last (so he says). It is nice though, since everything is new for my parents and me and we can take in the city without all the crowds.
Our plane flight was not as bad as I had imagined, thank goodness... but we will see how the return trip goes before I say that my kids are good international travelers ;). Ami only really full out cried once as we were landing in Tokyo, I must say my ears were popping like mad and VERY painful (my dad's were doing the same thing, I heard later) so it only goes to say that she was having similar problems. Other children were not crying the way she was though, so maybe it was just because we were all congested before we started the trip(?). Once she stopped freaking out enough for me to get her to nurse she was fine, and fell asleep until we had to pack up and get off the plane. Other than that, our 14 hour flight to Tokyo went pretty well. Chase napped a few times, watched Megamine (eek! would not have been my choice if we had more options) about 4 times, and squirreled around in our seats pretty much the entire trip. He didn't have a melt down once, thank goodness! Because of a ticketing thing, we re-arranged the seats and my parents got bumped up to business class, which was really great for them so they could stretch their legs during the trip and almost fully recline their seats (lucky!). Jeff and I were given an extra seat next to us, but we were split between the isle. Two by the window, and two right across the isle. It was good in the sense that Chase got to change his perspective often and lay out for naps, but not so great in the fact that Jeff and I couldn't sit together when the kids were awake at the same time and both needed attention... we couldn't easily swap responsibilities. And since my parents were up a few rows in business class, we did not have their extra set of hands. But for the most part, the kids did great and we didn't really need that much assistance.... and from traveling internationally while I nannied for a fantastic family, first leg with two kids and on the return trip we had three kids all under three years old, I will say that I had it much easier this time around. But again, the return leg might just be a beast with the kids. We will see.
What life has looked like at a glance:
Tuesday Feb 1: leave the house at 8am (late) get to the airport and get delayed an hour, with the real threat of a blizzard coming through, finally leave
Wednesday Feb 2: arrive in Tokyo at 5pm(?ish), have an hour layover (all the while missing living in Tokyo) before taking a 4 hour flight to Taipei, arrive and meet Jeff's parents and uncle at the airport, arrive at our rented apartment, unpack and go to bed at 4am
Thursday Feb 3: Wake up at 7am, meet up with Jeff's uncle and parents, go to uncle's house for lunch, go back to apartment to put Chase down for nap, Jeff, mom, dad, Mr. Tsai, Ami and me all took an excursion to Taipei 101, come back to the apartment and CRASH
Friday Feb 4: Mel stays back at apartment with Ami (she is very congested), Chase and Mrs. Tsai go to a park, Jeff, Mr. Tsai, mom and dad went to the Taipei gondola.
*plans for tonight* Jeff and Mel go to a night market, while mom and dad stay back with the kids