People often ask me what I do with Macy on the long flight across the ocean. I sometimes just smile and say – oh, you know. We play games, read books, eat snacks and sleep. This is the Cliff Notes version.
Our day started off like any other day…with six suitcases, six carry-ons, a two-year-old and her giraffe. Checking in is always interesting – you watch the scale and start praying – oh, please let them be right at 50 pounds. With the exception of one bag being 49.5 and one bag being 51.5 (oops), they were all just about 50. Step one – accomplished.
If you read my post Middle Seats, then you may remember that we did not have seats together on either of our American-carrier flights. I had no idea about the one on the east side, but it’s the shortest of the flights, so I wasn’t too worried. We asked the guy checking us in about changing the seats on our first flight, and with the click of a few keys, they were changed. Step two – done.
Our first flight was uneventful, except for the fact that it was delayed some and I worried a little bit about catching the long one – but in the end, we had just enough time to grab lunch to-go and make it to the next plane. And then the real fun began.
The plane is a 3-4-3 configuration, which means there are three seats, then an aisle, a middle section with four seats, another aisle, and three more seats. Macy and I were in between a girl on one aisle and a man on the other. Jeff was in between a young girl and guy across the aisle. After asking each aisle person if they would switch with him so that he could sit with his family (of course they said no – hard to give up an aisle seat for a middle one), the guy sitting in his aisle offered to trade. Once he was in the middle, we asked the girl next to me if she would sit in that aisle seat and she obliged. We were together! I couldn’t believe it. Thanks to all of you who were lifting that up…only God could have made it happen.
The long flight was well, long. Fifteen-ish hours long. Our activities included: stickers, books, beads, bracelets, sunglasses, more stickers, snack time, walk up and down the aisle, go the the bathroom and change our diaper, eat dinner, watch a Dora on the computer, pretend make-up, more beads, sing songs, read more books, drink some milk, change into jammies, brush teeth, and get some sleep. (Not necessarily in that order). I look back and can’t believe I used to complain about doing that trip before Macy was born. So easy to just take care of yourself.
When we landed on the east side, we had several hours before our next flight and I was all ready to eat a Burger King Whopper Jr. when alas, I discovered that time does not stand still just because you left the country and the airport had replaced the BK with McDonald’s. So sad.
Don’t feel too sorry for me – this airport (which is very Western) made it possible for me to grab a Starbucks coffee and muffin before our last flight. Yum.
When checking in for this flight, we found out our seats were not together. Hmm. Jeff was sitting in like row 10 and Macy and I were in row 30-something. Again, hmm. So Jeff asked to be moved back to another row near us. We figured someone would switch with him. Maybe. But when we got to the gate, the guy asked – are you George? (We stick out like a sore thumb). Turns out someone had made a call and they had found us a row together in the middle of the plane. Step twenty-seven (I lost count) – check.
We landed in our city (that does not have a Starbucks in the airport. Or in the city) about 11 pm or so. No trouble through immigration and when we got to baggage claim our six lovely duffel bags were the first ones off the conveyor. It’s the small victories that really get you through.
Our super awesome friends had arranged a van to come and get us and so we loaded up the van with all our stuff and headed home. We actually stayed up another hour or so after getting home – Macy thought it was daytime and wanted to play with all the toys she hasn’t seen in a while and I wanted to at least find my toiletries and pj’s.
Even though we went to bed about 1 AM, we were up at 5:30 AM. Oh, jet lag. I did not miss you.
To be continued…