My name is Gillie. I am a 30-year-old Canadian mumma living in Vietnam. I met my incredible Kiwi husband in London, England, seven years ago and he has been my life and travel partner ever since.
Our remarkable son was born seven months ago in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam — our home for the past four-plus years. Our new travel companion has already visited four countries, nine cities and has filled us with a new sense of purpose and exploration.
As expats in S.E. Asia, we are able to maintain a lifestyle of luxury holidays, champagne brunches and culture-a-gogo at the cost of a monthly Canadian heating bill.
As International School teachers, we work incredibly hard to educate young people in hopes that they will become intelligent global citizens. As parents, we work even harder to make sure we have enough energy and time to invest in our own young person.
The luxury is seemingly less these days, and the balance is fine — and hardly ever balanced, to be honest.
But every smile, every cuddle and every new development that our little creation brings, makes the yoga marathon that is our lives the perfect life to lead.
“I’m going for a run,” he said, 20 minutes after walking through the door. He was standing in the doorway of our two-month-old’s nursery when he said this.
I’m going to kill you, I thought, as I stared up at him from the armchair, holding our infant son against my breast milk-soaked T-shirt. I have been “on” for the last 12 hours; I haven’t showered or eaten and YOU want to go for a run!
As the tears of frustration welled up in my eyes, I took a deep breath, scrambled to my (recently massive) feet and handed him the baby.
“Have a great time on your run, boys,” I replied calmly.
An hour later, one sleeping infant and one frustrated husband returned home.
“I could hardly get a pace going. Bloody pram [Editor’s note: “pram” means stroller]. I’m not doing that again!”
“I suppose you’ll just have to get used to long walks then, won’t you?” I scoffed.
One month and a number of arguments later, we started researching running prams… And how lucky was I that during a recent trip home to Canada my cousin, Mommy Gearest, gave me the Chicco Activ3 running stroller?
The Chicco Activ3 jogging pram is a specimen of smooth maneuverability and shock-absorption. With adjustable handling features and at-your-fingertips braking system, this pram is perfect for any height and fitness level of any human.
As a post-cesarian mumma in recovery, the idea of bending over and fighting with any pram-related mechanism was a no-go. As an avid, all terrain runner, my husband was adamant that the pram be maneuverable on the unpredictable streets of Ho Chi Minh City and strong enough for some typical daddy-daycare off-roading incidents.
The Activ3 has catered nicely to all of our initial demands.
Although it’s not suitable for children under five or six months, this pram is going to last us until we no longer need a pram — which is great. Our babe is always very comfortable, whether sitting straight up, leaning back or lying down.
The adjustable straps and seat (three positions) are all covered so that little fingers don’t get pinched when repositioning.
And the ride is so smooth that both runner and rider can get the most out of their outing.
The front wheel, although durable and fast-aligning when faced with changes in terrain, is set just too far ahead of the body of the pram. This makes everyday city-living situations like getting in and out of the elevator a bit taxing, as it’s just too long.
The overall size of the pram, in relation to the seat itself, is a bit bulky. This makes collapsing the pram a bit of nightmare. Not so much for my husband, but a bit for myself, and our 50-something nanny struggles something fierce!
The only other thing that I would reimagine, in terms of design, is the sunshade. Though the multi-setting feature of the shade is great, the placement of the transparent “window” is way off! Unless you are positioned facing the front of the pram, legs on either side of the seat area, you can’t see into the window. Thus the pointlessness of having it at all!
Additionally, to the have the baby completely shaded (which is essential when you live on the equator!), the sunshade detaches from the Velcro at the back and collapses, causing the sun to pour in from the top. So, needless to say, our little man has a slight tan on his legs due to the fact that we can’t shade him completely. (But, to be honest — who needs to run at noon anyway?)