Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Travel Story... from H - E - well, you know where!, and Thank God for Good FRIENDS!!

I must premise this post with the fact, that I used to enjoy traveling. I used to like getting on a plane and setting out on an "adventure" to a new place. That sense of "adventure" was smushed when I had a baby. That smushed sense of adventure just got buried.

First of all.. Southwest changed their policy about flying with children, and I didn't know about it. If you don't check in online, you get on the plane AFTER the group A people, and before everyone else. The elderly, disabled and minors traveling without adults still get on the plane first, but people with kids -- forget it. Southwest basically said SCREW YOU to all of us. Why is that a problem? 1) You CANNOT check in online if you have a lap child. 2) Everyone checks in online(putting you in the much coveted A group). I flew on two legs, and there were probably a total of 25 people that got on the plane after me. Not a big deal, except people who don't like kids can't necessarily choose to sit FAR away from me, and I have to stand in that long, slow line while everyone puts all of their stuff away. While carrying two bags. and the squirming 25 pound monster who wants to grab everyone, poke everything and steal stuff, and whine, and well the list goes on forever. It's not very convenient. That didn't end the travel from HE--wherever...

We finally got into Norfolk, I called the hotel and had them come get me. They said 20 minutes. Fine, no big deal. An airport porter loaded my stuff onto a dolly and helped me to the area where the shuttles pick up. Almost two hours later (after a depressing phone call from a friend), the shuttle still hadn't arrived. I had to call the 1800 number to the hotel reservation line (because stupid me forgot to pack the Hotel's number) to get the number. I coulcn't very well walk back into the airport. I had 2 large suitcases, 2 backpacks, a carseat, and a kid in a stroller. (Remember, we're going to be in Bahrain for a month.) The hotel said they'd pay for a cab, so I set about tracking one down. Because I was at the shuttle pick up place NONE of the cabs would stop. So, luckily, the porter noticed this, and came over. He again, LOADED my luggage and helped me get all of my stuff to the Cab Stand. While I was loading the baby into the car seat, I felt it. Yes. It was the GREAT POOP EXPLOSION 2007. Only I didn't know it yet. It was very noticable by the time we got to the room. He was cranky and I found out he had VERY good reason to be when I took off his outfit and poop and raisins went flying everywhere. Yes, Poop and RAISINS. We will not be eating raisins on airplanes anymore.

We had a great dinner and some wine, we went to bed. Oh, but the crib that I got must have had a mattress of needles, because the baby wouldn't sleep in it. The second he touched the matress, he woke up and acted as if I was depositing him in a box of rabid rattlesnakes. I finally gave in and let him sleep with me.

Begin day 2 of travel from hell (you knew that's what I meant anyway).
We got everything ready and went down to the front desk at the hotel WHERE I HAD A RESERVATION for the shuttle to take me to base at 10:30. He wasn't there, so I explained about my experience from the day before. They radioed the shuttle leaving someone else stranded, instead of me. I got to the terminal to find out that there were only 7 seat available. Now, I was flying the equivalent of stand-by, only basically anyone who showed up got on ahead of us. I had the same chance of getting on that plane as I would winning the lottery AND getting struck by lightning in the same day. When I tried to call my husband to discuss the whole situation, I realized that my phone was dead. Not dead like, you might be able to get a number out of your phonebook but you might not be able to make a call, dead as in turns on, then off.

I am currently at a friends house weighing our decision for me to just fly home (baby getting his own seat, of course). I am feeling a bit guilty because even though my husband said he wasn't disappointed, I'm sure he is, at least a little. I would be. At least now I'll have more time to spend with friends and family at home. There will be less stress about the Thanksgiving trip, and getting everything ready to be moved in December.

Thank you Wendy for the ride today. YOU ARE AWESOME!!!!
Thank you Katie, for offering, even though I didn't get in touch with you.. (and, duh you are NOT affiliated with 7 in the previous post!! Silly Lady!!!)
Thank you Frank and Melanie for offering us your home.
Thank you baby for finally taking a nap, even if it is in my arms.


Kimi said...

Awww Mary! Sorry you have had such a rough time.

Splendid Photography said...

Good lord what a horrible experience. I honestly wouldn't know what to do. Sorry it is not working out as planned

Anns said...

I'm exhausted just hearing about this! Sorry it was such a crappy experience.....

Anns xo