I often lament the fact that my family never goes anywhere or does anything. We rarely vacation outside of annual home-leave, and we don’t venture to the city or sights on the weekends. Life has become a routine of kids activities, birthday parties, errands, and…well, boredom. I realize that busyness does happen, especially with kids, and I also know that after a long week of commuting and stress-filled work in China, my husband would much rather just relax at home with few people around. It’s his downtime, so planning or participating in outings doesn’t exactly thrill him.
During summer at home this year, I decided that this all simply had to change. I have a car to get us around, money saved for excursions elsewhere, and no excuse not to carve time out to experience more in (and out of) Beijing. While my husband can join us when he’s up for it, my girls and I can just explore something new every once in awhile to spice up our lives.
This weekend, we finally went to The Kro’s Nest. I was able to follow a friend’s easy directions, so getting there wasn’t an issue. Other than the fact that we started out a little late and that a Saturday night meant reservations would have been ideal, it all worked out well. Our wait was no more than 10 minutes, and a request to move to a non-smoking area was granted within another 10. The restaurant was packed, but a waitress came to take our order as soon as we waved our hands up in the air.
I love the décor of the place, and my girls loved the automatic doors to enter both the restaurant and the restrooms. The “nest” décor is a cool touch, and the featured tree in the corner is fun and unique.
Being a weekend and on the late side, unfortunately, our pizza took about 40 minutes to make it to our table, and the temperature of it made us quickly realize it may have been sitting there for awhile. Those two aspects were disappointing, but the size sure wasn’t! When I asked the waitress earlier how many pieces a medium Sicilian pizza had, she said six to eight. We decided to order the large, and it came to our table with 28 pieces! Yes, 28!!! I think there was a bit of miscommunication there somewhere, but we now had dinner for a second night, and it all tasted great.
I think one of the most surprising things to me, at the end of the meal, was the price. I figured dinner in the city, especially large servings, would be quite expensive. It turned out that that super large pizza, a large salad to share and drinks cost only RMB 241, less than what we often pay for our pizza and movie night at home using Papa John’s or a similar pizza joint. AND we have leftovers for our real pizza and movie night as a family, which we’re looking forward to.
I was just excited to get out and about for a change. I already have several places on my list, and I think I’m pegging Saturday evenings to start checking them off. My next step will be weekend day outings while the weather is nice, likely to the tourist spots a-plenty around here. Christmas vacation is well in the works, and perhaps I can even figure shorter jaunts for national holidays as well. It’s taken four years of living here, but it’s time to break out of the bubble and explore. Here we come!
The Kro’s Nest: Mon-Thurs 10am-midnight, Fri-Sun 10-1am. 35 Xiaoyun Lu (opposite Renaissance Beijing Chaoyang Hotel), Chaoyang District (8391 3131) 朝阳区霄云路35号(国航大厦万丽酒店对面, 口福居旁)