Variations on these themes of dress and transport of young children are commonly seen around town.
Yes, split pants（kai dang ku), which are totally exposed in the diaper area, are alive and well in China.
It’s definitely cheaper than disposable diapers, and more convenient than those pesky wet cloth diapers.
There is a strong sense here that a child, especially a little boy, ought not to get too hot in that sensitive area.
In addition, children here are often trained from a very young (few months old) age to tinkle on demand, anytime, anywhere.
It is true that if you pay close attention, you can note subtle signs even in an infant that they are just about to void, and quickly respond.
I think the Chinese grandmothers have this perfected to a fine art.
At least I’ve not noticed too many of them with fresh urine stains on their shirts, as would be the case with me.
And on every street corner you see–not silver bells, but little puddles left behind.
Of course the caregiver to child ratio here is optimal for paying lots of attention to the child, often with 6 adults per child (parents plus 2 sets of grandparents) tending to the little one’s every need.
Nevertheless, winter finds two sets of rosy cheeks on many-a-babe.
This photo was taken by my friend riding on her bike right behind this mother and child.