This post first appeared in my drafts section as an “I’ve left Ukraine” post that I never got around to posting.
After we departed the land of pork, we headed straight (well, stupidly via Heathrow, but back out the same day) to Portugal, the land of … the Portuguese? Travelling in the party were were two adults: myself and Mr Moi; and one baby.
Note to self for the future – an extra half a person, and the increase in baggage allowace this entails, only serves to complicate life, especially when that half a person generally needs at least one adult arm to be carried in.
[Time for an aside]
So, our baggage is worth a mention: three (huge) suitcases. One with the exandable section expanded. One 60L backpack. One 10.5kg stroller in a bag. One computer bag, one nappy bag, one general ‘full-o-shit’ bag, one man-bag, and two handbags (hey, a girl’s gotta be prepared).
So it was a tight squeeze into Mind the Gap’s SUV to even get to the airport, but it was probably downright hilarious (stressful to me) to see us juggle two overloaded trolleys and a baby as we pushed through the airport. Of course, we lost half of it in transit, so things were easier at the other end, at least…
We went to Portugal, and for the first time in living memory (four months) I saw my daughter’s arms for the first time. Yes, that’s right, I bathed her fully clothed in Ukraine. Not really, but you know the point I’m trying to make. I didn’t recognise the poor kid.
Since November, she’d been wrapped in some huge down-filled snow suit and looked rather like a Michelin Man every time we went out. There is nothing more scary than the wrath of a babushka when she thinks you’re underdressing your child in the winter, so she was a well wrapped kid.
Everytime I saw her indoors, she was in longy everything. The day we left Ukraine it was zero degrees and snowing; that evening we arrived in Lisbon where it was 25 degrees and (had been) sunny (it was night when we arrived).
Over the next two days I went through an adjustment period. I kept looking in the stroller and thinking my baby was a summery little changeling the fairies had placed there.
And I wasn’t the only one who was going through a period of adjustment. Le Srpoglette couldn’t believe her good luck. She could sit in the stroller and use her hands! Which created more work for me, because she quickly learned how to chuck stuff out of the stroller for fun.