Posts Tagged ‘ Airplane ’

Travel Fiasco–My Scattered Self

Sunday, October 17th, 2010

I swear something happened after the birth of my child that has affected my brain circuitry.  Lord knows I want to be a good mom. I try and multitask with my husband, baby and job but…

3 WEEKS AGO…

–I took our cat, Wayne Sanchez, to the vet and paid $300 to find out he is still obese (He barely fits in his Sherpa bag). Then I ran errands. The next day my keys were missing. For nearly a week I searched while pretending nothing was amiss. After pressing our apartment buzzer every time I came home, Phil asked me to fess up. Then he said I need to focus more. True. I need to be more aware. True.

Wayne Sanchez and his co conspirator

Wayne Sanchez and his co conspirator

To redeem myself, I took a time out and sat in a quiet corner. I tried to retrace my steps, mentally. Wayne rubbed against me -boom! I had it, the Sherpa bag! I felt like I had just won the Pulitzer Prize for Missing Things. I called Phil on his cell and shouted, “I FOUND THEM IN WAYNE’S FAT CAT CARRIER!” “Um, okay, I’m in a meeting.” He wasn’t nearly as excited as I was.

2 WEEKS AGO…

–I was really trying to stay focused; I wanted Phil to see my improvement. We went to the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens and, whilst in the tropics room, he asked me to hold his Ray-bans. Instead of putting them in the diaper bag, I made what I thought was an intelligent decision… I held them so I didn’t accidentally crush them in the bag—something I’ve done before. I was smitten with myself. We walked outside and he asked for them. I looked into my hands – they had vanished. Poof! Just like that.

“A palm tree must have plucked them from my palm,” I said, attempting to joke.

Sigh. I went back into the jungle and crawled on all fours, searching Bougainvillea’s and Bromeliad’s to many a strange look. Nothing. If anyone goes there and finds them in the foliage, please let me know.

1 WEEK AGO…

–I blew so many fuses in my brain that I needed a circuit breaker. We were at the airport, checked in and at our gate. I went to change our seats while Phil watched Fi. The counter agents had me leave our boarding passes for them to work on. I went to sit down and Phil said, “you’re being paged.” Huh?

Before he could spit out the next line – Now what did you lose? – I bolted. Think. Think. Think. What. What? What? I had my laptop. Fia was accounted for. I looked in my purse. OH MY GOD. MY WALLET IS MISSING. My bolt turned into a sprint. At security they said it wasn’t their page, that I must have left it at check-in.  I got to the counter, hunched over, gasping for air. “I’m the o-o-n-one wh-wh-who left my wallet.” As I said this I realized I was holding half a bottle of formula. No clue why. It just added to the absurdity of it all.  The agent told me another worker had already taken the wallet to my gate.

As I began to run back to security, I stopped dead in my tracks. I turned towards the agents and frantically wailed: “I don’t have my ID to get through! My flight leaves in 20 minutes.”

They must have taken pity on me, because a very kind, calm agent took me by the arm.  “I’ll help you honey. It’s hard being a mom,” she said, as she glanced at the seemingly random half full baby bottle. We cut to the front of the line and she explained to TSA the problem. They asked for my boarding pass. Time once again stood still as the realization hit me: MY BOARDING PASS IS AT THE GATE. My entire torso began gesturing towards D-15. I was nearly hysterical. As my arms waved madly, formula began to bounce out of the bottle, spraying others – I swore I heard one woman say, “She needs a Xanax.” They called TSA supervision. I whimpered my pathetic situation to them, and they let me through.

I sprinted to the gate counter past a bewildered Phil and into the arms of yet another kind agent who was standing there—smiling– with my wallet.  Dripping in sweat and panting, I tried to explain all that had happened. “Slow down and breathe,” she said, “Motherhood is hard – Just don’t forget your baby!”

I dejectedly walked back to my family. “What the hell is going on?” Phil asked.

I begged, “Don’t be mad at me. You have to promise. Even they (gesturing towards the agents) said being a mom is hard.”

Fia, obviously unaffected by Mom's commotion
Fia, obviously unaffected by Mom’s commotion

“Okay, okay, just calm down. You’re kind of making a scene,” he said. True again.

“I left my wallet at check-in.” If my head had hung any lower it would have hit the filthy floor of LaGuardia.

He patted my leg. Fia hugged me, then bit my knee and laughed.  I began to breathe. We boarded. I collapsed into my seat and slept the entire time.

YESTERDAY…..

– I didn’t lose anything.

TODAY…..

– So far so good.

LOOKING AHEAD….

–I booked a woman’s yoga retreat this winter. In Belize. My justification: I need to learn to focus. Phil didn’t buy it, but he did give me his blessing (He probably needs the break). It will be my first trip away from Fi, so at least I know I won’t lose her.

Add a Comment

Have Baby, Will Travel!

Sunday, August 15th, 2010

When I was pregnant I made a promise. I wouldn’t slow down on my love of travel. I would strap the baby on my back and just “go.” Then Fia came December 2nd, along with three massive snowstorms and a trail of sleep deprivation. Like a bear, I went into hibernation. I didn’t think I’d ever leave the house; let alone the city or state. Fast forward 9 months and now Fia and I are bouncing around the country together, with 12 flights and 5 states under our belt (often by ourselves, sans hubby).

I thought I’d give a list of tips I’ve found most helpful while traveling with Fi. Like American Express, don’t leave home without it.

  • At airport, put baby in sling and load your diaper bag and carry-ons in your car seat/stroller and roll to the gate. You can carry baby through security in sling, so it’s easier than holding up the line to take them out of car seat.
  • Formula and baby food can go through security with no problem.
  • At the gate, you need a tag for your stroller. Get it from the agent before you board. Then relax.
  • Babies cry on planes. Embrace it. (If baby is super fussy, I offer to buy the passenger next to me a drink. No one has ever taken me up on it, but the offer seems to ward off the angry stare).
  • I find businessmen typically offer the most help when boarding. Take them up on it! Have them carry your diaper bag and carry-on and put in overhead. This gives you time to break down stroller.
  • If baby has her own seat, you have to bring the car seat on. With baby in it, it can be super heavy. I suggest carrying baby in sling, and carry on empty car seat (or have businessman do it for you) until you sit down and situate for flight.
  • Sign her up for a frequent flier card (if she has her own ticket). It’s never too early to rack up the points.
  • If staying at a hotel, most have free cribs and pack ‘n plays they will put in your room (I always bring my own crib sheet though).
  • During take off and landing either feed or give pacifier. At least until you get through the first few flights. Now, Fia doesn’t even need it.
  • Find yourself empowered by the whole experience. And trust me, each flight gets easier.

Oh, and all you Moms out there worried about germs?

You get over it after a few flights! As we waited for her 12th flight, Fia decided to lick La Guardia–and I finally gave up stopping her.

Need advice about traveling with your baby? Ask away in the comments section!

Add a Comment