Hi everyone! I know we have been very quiet of late (for the last 3 months to be exact). Our family has been plagued with one family emergency after another since February and to be very honest I just haven’t been in the mood or had the energy to write much.
However a little episode with my handphone’s memory being wiped out this past week, reminded me of the reason I write. I lost all my photos from Jan to April 2017 😦 Exactly the period I stopped blogging for. So here I am again, determined to not lose any more of our memories.
We were originally supposed to be on a family trip to Bangkok this last weekend. A city that we used to visit as a couple every year and one that we have not been back to for almost 10 years. We had promised the kids, many fun activities and they were particularly looking forward to Kidzania Bangkok. We also figured it would be a cheaper first time to Kidzania, just in case they didn’t take to it and were afraid to try out the jobs. But as luck would have it, life threw us a few curveballs and the trip was cancelled.
Thank goodness we have a Kidzania right in our own backyard so that we could still keep our promise to the kids albeit a more expensive experience.
We bought our tickets online (few dollars cheaper than at the door) and crossed our fingers and hope that it wasn’t too crowded on a long weekend. We have heard/ read the horror stories of the weekend crowds and were a little worried on how diluted an experience the kids would get.
We got to the check-in counters (resembling an airport) at 10am and were quickly tagged to our kids with matching ‘watches’. This meant that our kids could not leave the place without either one of us and I later found out that I could access all our professional photos just by tapping my watch at the photo shop. Our whole family was synced up!
First stop for the kids was the bank, to activate their debit card and bank account where they would store their salary or pay for activities. As we started to walk into the bank with the kids, a staff stepped forward and say “Parents, please wait outside”. Haha what a shock to the system..:p
Jah and Bella came out of the queue a couple of times to ask for us to join them but eventually were convinced that they could just queue together and it would be fine. Jah completed his banking fuss free because he knew his birthday. Bella on the other hand was sent out to ask me for her birthdate before she could complete her transaction.
We headed to the Qatar Airways Pilot and Cabin Crew jobs first and took a queue ticket for 11am. We wanted to try the Paddle Pop Job which was right next to it but the lady told us to come back after the airline job because we wouldn’t finish in time for our 11am slot. I love how the other jobs were very aware that the kids were all probably holding an airline queue card and made an effort to help us plan rather than blindly taking us in for the job. 🙂
To kill time, we ended up at the Spritzer water filtration job, honestly not the most natural job that I would have chosen but the kids were willing to give it a shot and we were all in for a surprise. The facilitator in charge was a dream! She managed to engage the kids and made things so fun for them even though I’m sure the subject wasn’t the most interesting or exciting. They will laughing, giggling, high fiving her and running around (not sure that’s allowed in a real lab though :p). They loved it so much that it helped them relax and got them very keen to try on the rest of the jobs…phew!! A big thank you to her!!!
We headed back to the airline job and Jah and Bella were quickly ushered off to their training while Joel and I made ourselves scarce, in case they came running out to look for us. The pilot and the cabin crew had to be separated so we were worried that Bella would freak out because she would only do a job if her Brother did it with her. We were not allowed to see how the pilots did their job but one parent would be invited on board so that the cabin crew could serve them. Jah later told me that his pilot job was very fun and he wanted to come back for it again 🙂
We spent a good 5 hours at Kidzania that day. I was surprised the kids lasted so long but then again you really do need to spend that amount of time, given that most jobs last 20-30 mins minus the queueing time and we were there on a relatively quiet day.
The kids also attempted the following jobs
Paddle Pop Ice cream Maker (Free Ice Cream!!!)
Abbott Milk Lab (Bella was really tired by this time and the only reason she decided to join the 30 mins activity was for the money. Yes I kid you not! She was just waiting to be paid so that her Brother would not have more money than her, in his account)
And this was probably 1/3 of the career options they had. The kids had so much fun that Jah is already planning for his next visit and has also asked for a trip to Kidzania as his birthday treat.
It helps that there is some semblance of continuity for the kids too because they get to bring home the debit card which they activated and keep their salary in the card and reuse it for their next visit!
Honestly, it was also really funny to see how parents (yes us included) have a tough time letting go and wanting to solve every problem for their kids (queue cutters). It was tough not knowing what was being said in the rooms and not knowing if your child is misbehaving or following instructions correctly because you can’t hear a thing. In fact at some point, I felt like the kids were coping better than us…however it all changed at the 3 hour mark for me because by then I was really too tired to care or hawk over my kids anymore haha so not only was this a lesson for my kids in independence..it was definitely one for Joel and me too. 🙂
Oh and did I say it yet? I’m happy to be back…