Sunday, October 19, 2014

Mama Bear

Two friends and I just hosted a baby shower for a fourth friend who is expecting a little girl in December but who is about to leave to deliver her in her home country of South Africa.

One of the guests said to me as she was leaving the shower, "You're like a mama bear to all of us here. Our families are so far away."

That did make me realize one of the nice things about being part of a tight-knit expat community. This is the kind of place where there's a whole circle of friends within a walk of a few minutes, ready to go get a manicure, have a beer, pop over for a quick visit, or grab a meal. There's a spontaneity to it that is hard to match back in DC.

At the shower, we decorated onesies, ate cake, and had a generally good time as the air outside was hazardous. One guest showed up with her adorable two-year-old in a face mask. For most people, though, today was a good day to stay inside.
I did the one on the far left, which says mei mei -- little sister -- in Chinese.

Meanwhile, some people did venture outdoors. Today was the day of the Beijing Marathon, and it wasn't cancelled, even though the air was in the mid-400s for much of the morning. Really, China?

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