I went out with some girlfriends at the weekend. Inevitably we went shopping. A lovely lunch was had, where, of course, the boy ate virtually none of the meal I had paid good money for. He is a proper little con artist. I suppose I should know better. The baby, surprisingly, slept for the whole lunch. But, as babies are wont to do, she awoke just as I was trying to pay and get the boy ready to leave. A great deal of stress ensued and I departed from the restaurant as quick as I could, having drawn the attention of most of the customers thanks to the baby's cries.
On reaching cool air and open space outside I considered my options for quieting the baby. I didn't want to inconvenience my friends by sitting down again elsewhere (although I knew they wouldn't mind) so I decided to breastfeed on the move. This is a method I have employed a few times at home. It is very useful in those moments when you are cooking, with the toddler shouting 'I want play trains!!' on repeat and you really need full mobility and both hands, or actually preferably some extra hands.
Baby was already in my babycarrier. This is a new fabric one that I purchased on hearing that you can breastfeed whilst 'babywearing'. I'm not sure how I feel about the term 'babywearing' but it seems to be the cool way to refer to it at the moment - like the baby is an accessory to your 'look'. Anyway, baby was lying in the carrier as I was using it like a sling. I spun her so she was belly to belly with me and moved her arm to my side and then latched her on. This was all quite slick, but there is one issue. I am around 5 foot 3. Therefore, when my breast is out, anyone taller than me (and that's most people) can pretty much see what I am doing, so haste can be a necessity. However, other than my friends and one or two passers by, nobody was close enough to see. With a scarf draped over to cover my dignity I proceeded to shop without having to stop to feed baby. A triumph! This is the first time I had tried this outside of the home, but it was definitely a useful technique.
As an aside, I was recently 'babywearing' (not feeding, just carrying) when in a charity shop. The old lady behind the counter was admiring the carrier (and the baby). She said "Those are wonderful things. When I lived in Africa we used to watch the local ladies going off to work in the fields with their babies like that. And you know what? We never once heard them cry." A wonderful advocation I think.