Monday, September 24, 2007

Columbus Park (China Town - NY)

I promised Astrid that we would go to another playground after her nap, so when she woke up from her nap the first thing she asked was, "Mommy? We go playground?"

Then she gave me a laundry list of things we had to do to get ready for the playground:
1) "Change clothes."
2) "Do hair."
3) "Put shoes on."
Coming from Soho, we had to walk through Little Italy to get to China Town. There's an Italian festival going on with lots of lights and decorations up. We took the stroller with us so we could walk the 13 or so blocks there. Astrid was sitting in her stroller entertained by looking at everything that was going on around her. All the Italian restaurants on either side of Mulberry Street were packed. She sees the playground and shouts, "Playground!" while running towards it.She was the only white kid there, surrounded by Asian kids. Usually I'm the lone Asian person, so this was a change with me blending in and Astrid standing out with her blond hair.She might have stood out and gotten some looks from others, but she seemed right at home.

When I told my mom about it, she said maybe Astrid perceives herself as looking Asian. I don't know about that. I just think she was oblivious to any differences. It'll be interesting when she's older and starts asking me why we don't look alike. Even the playground equipment has a Chinese design to it and is painted red.
She loves climbing ladders of all kinds. In the beginning I forbid her from going up the slide, ("We go up the stairs and down the slide") and I still protest when there are kids around, but I let her when she has the slide to herself. She's able to climb up the slide all by herself now.The smaller playgrounds here don't have swings, but this one does.Having fun on the "swing swing".She loved her aquarium swing as an infant, and the swing is still her favorite thing to do at the playground. Now she tells me, "Higher Mommy! Higher!"One last time on the slide before we head out.The park also has a large soccer field.They were playing a game there and Astrid asked, "Baseball?" I had to laugh because her first guess is always "baseball" (her dad is a big Dodgers fan) and then "football" is the second guess, but soccer doesn't register yet.There was a random marching band walking through the park, and then marching down the streets of New York. Astrid loved the music commenting on all the instruments and sounds "Horn Mommy! Drum! Music!"Jumping up and down, all excited about seeing and hearing the marching band.

What a treat for Astrid - one playground in the morning and a different playground in the evening. So many new sights and sounds and kids to play with at each stop along the way. She loves it here in New York.

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