The family restaurant
Last weekend I had dinner with a few Spanish women that I know from a WeChat group. As we would be bringing our families and we all have young children, the organizer chose a 亲子餐厅 or family restaurant. This restaurant has the pecualirity of having lots of different play areas and all kinds of toys for children to be entertained. I had been to this restaurant once before and I thought it was expensive and the food so-so, but it was the best option anyway if we wanted to at least try to talk a bit. I was not sure if Baby A. would be very interested in the toys as at home he barely looks at them, but I thought I would just take turns with C. to walk him around if he started being annoying. I really wanted to meet these Spanish women as I had been chatting online with some of them for months but never managed to meet in person.
Let me show you first a few pictures of the restaurant. They are taken from Dianping, a directory of restaurants and other businesses that is widely used in China.
It looks amazing, right? Well, I have to say… it was!! It was the first time in months that I was able to eat and chat in peace. Baby A. was super excited and played with everything while we watched him from our table. He started with the “sand pit“ (actually the dice-sized cubes were a choking hazard, but luckily he wasn’t interested in eating them). Then he spent a good amount of time in the kitchen as he loves watching people cook and pretending he’s cooking. That play kitchen was amazing, it had absolutely everything, from a bbq to a microwave to a blender that looked exactly like the real one we have at home. He also climbed up and down the “hamster maze” and played in the ball pit.
He’s usually very clingly and wants to be walked around nonstop, but this time he didn’t even remember my existence for a good 3 or 4 hours! This was worth the overpriced food and I will happily go back there when I need a break! I would also have loved this place as a child, there are just so many things to play with! But there are no places like this in my hometown and another woman said the same so I don’t know if there are places like this at all in Spain. In China, indoor play parks (not necessarily restaurants) are becoming very popular now that young parents increasingly want their children to do more than just go to class and study. And, well, for when the air is so bad that you can’t take your child to play outside…