I generally avoid Mommy/Mummy and Me baby classes. Not so much because I think they’re bad, but because I am lazy. If nothing else. And classes involve regimented times and dates and I just can’t fly with that. Also, let’s be honest. They are for the parents more than anything.
But I did sign Jonah up for Gymboree. Not because he requested it. In fact, he spends most of each class with an expression that trends from neutral to unhappy. I am always like, Look Jonah! Look at this amazing mirror/bell toy thingy! Look at this fuzzy rocker! Look at this slide! The fishes are in the water, so cool! Who is the luckiest boy in the world? Because he has TAMBOURINES EVERYWHERE!
But he is nonplussed. He is on to me.
I mostly love Gymboree because although it is impossibly cute to see all the bambinos in all their chubby glory sizing each other up and drooling and sometimes smiling while the very cute teacher talks and sings songs in a British lilt (Hello, everyBODY.), it’s the afters I like. If you know English English, you know that was my weak attempt at a double entendre.
After class, a few of us head upstairs to Starbucks (I confess this all takes place in a mall. Quelle horreur!) and I get to have my skinny chai latte and pastry and then we just sit there and, how you say, chew the cud. It’s a very international crew as well- no surprise in central London. We are American, Canadian, Swedish, German and Aussie. Or Kiwi. Or South African. I can’t remember, and you know I always confuse them.
The babes are all well-behaved and sleep away in their prams/buggies/pushchairs/strollers while we’re up to no good. One afternoon a man selling illegal DVDs came over to us and I pounced. Now we trade stories of terrible recording quality and trade them back and forth like the black market gems they are. My favorite was when Kate said matter-of-factly, “girls, I really enjoyed Coco Before Chanel, you should borrow it. It’s not actually Coco Before Chanel in the wrapper, it’s something completely different. But it was good. Whatever it was.”
I am still wrapping my head around that one. But these are good peeps. And Gymboree is a good thing. If you are able to re-mortgage your house for the fees.