Again, thanks for all the comments. I'd like to answer each one individually, but I have a lot of packing to do. We are leaving Nanjing in mere hours! Our plane leaves in 11 hours, which is not ideal, but as soon as we check out of the hotel room, I'll feel like we're practically gone already.
Kiddo hates the hotel room. He hate hate HATES it. At first we thought, nah, that's silly, he's crying for a multitude of other reasons. But now we've decided that it's true. When all other problems have been solved, he will cry long and hard simply because he hates this room.
Rick took him to Walmart in the stroller, which is no small task. They're taking a taxi there and walking back - the walk takes about an hour. I get 2 peaceful hours to pack, and I'm packing like mad. I feel like I haven't slept in 2 days, even though last night I actually did finally get some sleep, but the realization that the kiddo hates the hotel room takes a huge weight off of me. That, combined with leaving.
Zai jian, Nanjing. It's been real. (A little too real.)
For the record, my passionate loathing for Nanjing is primarily a coping mechanism. I'm sure, in its own right, Nanjing is a reasonably nice place. But it feels so good to say, "I hate Nanjing!" and type it over and over. Doing so prevents me from having to make a number of other negative statements that I'll regret more than I'll regret this one. Nanjing is not AwesomeCloud's home town, it's not the entire nation of China, and if we decide never to return here, no harm will be done. Someday we may go to Wuxi and find that it is delightful. Beijing (without a baby) gave us lots of good memories. Nanjing, and I, however, do not get along at all, and neither one of us will be sorry to see the other go.
We do have some happy memories. Two days ago, Rick took the baby to a park and discovered a pond with koi and turtles. He also discovered that AwesomeCloud likes books, and there's a great little bookstore nearby that sells cute bilingual picture books for the toddler crowd.
He even started acting a little playful on that trip, smiling at Rick and waving his bottle around. And then last night, we took him to a fine restaurant with our guide. I had been advised by the MD not to eat meat or veggies - just toast, water, and other mild foods until my stomach recovers. (He did not give me antibiotics - apparently, if this is from the bacteria in the water, it's a very mild case and all I need is time.)
So there I was, eating a sad little bowl of white rice and some green tea, with all this great food spread out in front of us. (Our guide over-ordered significantly, probably hoping I'd cave in and stuff myself. Can't, doctor's orders!) The kiddo was parked in his stroller right next to me. He kicked the table cloth. I giggled. I poked his foot and said, "Bingbingbing!" He giggled. After a while of that, he looked up at me and made kissing noises! I made them back. We laughed and laughed and I gave him tiny tastes of rice and bok sprouts, the first solid food he's willingly eaten in a while.
I do use the sling. When I get it right, it's wonderful and he likes being in it. The trick is putting it on right in the first place. Once it's on, it's hard to adjust or take off. Also, it doesn't fit Rick because of the way I made it. I'll alter it when I get home. So he's getting stroller time too, which he's perfectly fine with. Anything he does that is not screaming death and agony in the hotel room is a relief to us. We'll put in the serious bonding efforts when we get out of here.
Sorry, still no time to post pics. Maybe in Guangzhou, depending on how the internet connection is there and how I feel. Or maybe I'll just wait till we get home.