It was Bastian’s work day and we were camping near San Miguel de Allende. The camp spot was the overpriced RV park at Hotel San Ramon. The camp spot was ok with good wifi and 3 warm pools. But I didn’t want to hang out all day on the campground missing a day in San Miguel de Allende.
So, for the very first time, I took both kids with the local bus to a big city and tried to survive one day and that without stroller. A tricky project since their nap times are at different times and they aren’t used to city tours especially not on foot. I was nervous. What if they get too tired from all that walking? What if the city is super crowded, someone gets lost, there are no changing tables, the whole project turns out to be really stressful?
Taking the bus was super easy, it stopped right in front of the hotel on highway 51. We sat all the way in the back and had fun with taking turns with my glasses and taking selfies.
Kind of late I realized that the bus was standing already for a while and all other passengers had left already. I ran to the front to ask the driver: ‘Es lo ultimo?’ which was supposed to mean ‘Is this the last stop?’. And yes, it was the last stop and the Centro is just one block up the hill.
I ran back to get the kids and the backpack out of the bus, flipping a couple of pesos into the driver’s hand, balancing Mika down the stairs, almost losing the backpack, catching Juni while jumping out of the bus… we were there.
Ok, so we started walking in that direction pointed out by the driver. Mika in the backpack, Juni bouncing up and down the narrow sidewalks. It’s funny, the sidewalks are sometimes 1.5 meters below the street, or much higher than the street, or are disappearing all of a sudden just to start anew a couple of meters further.
The mentioned ‘one block’ was more like a 15 blocks walk up the hill. It was ok since it wasn’t too hot yet and we were all fit and happy and Juni in good walking aka bouncing mode. We made it to the Zocalo, the park in the city center and indulged in a second breakfast with buns and marmalade, hot chocolate, coffee and orange juice. I had said ‘Sin popote’ meaning ‘No straw’ a couple of times during my order but that concept must have been new to the waiter.
After we had finished every last crumb we were ready for the hike further up the hill to find the Museo de Juguete, the toy museum. We found the spot that google maps pointed out as the location for the museum but we walked up and down and up and down the street and didn’t find the museum. A couple with a kid Juni’s age walked by so I asked them ‘Disculpa, donde esta el museo de Juguete?’ (Excuse me, where is the Toy Museum?). The guy responded in Spanish pointing a little further up the road at a large pink banner. Just half a block further.
As the couple continued their way I heard them discussing in English where we might be coming from.
We made it to the museum, a house filled with toys from all over Mexico. It was interesting and it was good but ….
… kids that age can’t enjoy it much. They can’t play with the toys, and they can’t bang their hands against the glass or lick the glass or shake it so that the toys start to move inside.
Luckily there was a small play corner too, where playing was allowed.
That little corner with books, wooden toy trucks, and most of all a dinosaur race board saved the day. On the roof of the Museum is a nice shady spot with a great all around view.
Juni’s nap time was crawling upon us and she got a little cranky so we started making our way back down the hill. She was so tired that I had to carry her for a while. That means I carried both kids, Juni on the back and Mika in front of me. That way we were faster than with her walking but still very slow.
After a couple of blocks we stopped at a Starbucks, my back was hurting, everyone was hungry and we needed a potty break. As expected, there was no changing table in the bathroom but the patio offered enough space to change the diaper on my sweater on the floor,
We then recharged our batteries with bagels and cream cheese and a latte in the peaceful patio with beautiful paintings.
With more energy we continued our way downhill, explored more beautiful patios with uncountable fountains and ….
… I loved this beautiful city more and more with every new street we walked along.
Some time during our walk downhill my other little bunny fell asleep in the carrier…
We survived the day together, without stroller in a for us new city and I even found the time to take some pictures. I’m myself very surprised how well everything went (except for the part where I schlepped two tired kids like a tourist serving mule).
What made this day successful?
- Enough food and water
- Many breaks from walking
- Naps when the kids are tired
- The Ergobaby Baby Carrier
I guess, I’ll survive more of these city tours with this lively bundle of wiggly worms. The two different nap times are really tricky to deal with during such days but it’s doable with a baby carrier.
Do you have small children? I’d love to know how you’re dealing with naps when you’re actually on the go all day. Let me know in the comments!
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