Lessons from the road… and air… and junior suite :: Part I

On Thursday we returned from a quick long weekend away to Perth. Surprisingly, it’s slightly closer to Darwin than other Australian capitals, taking only three hours and 15 minutes to get there. Hooray! Why didn’t we go there earlier? (We love finding civilisation is only a short flight away).

It’s no news to you lovely readers that we live a long way from our family. Over the years our family members have been scattered around the globe, but as we’ve gotten older everyone has returned to Australia, and almost all returned to Brisbane where we more or less grew up. But not us! No sireeee… and as a result, while our little family doesn’t travel frequently, we certainly travel often enough.

So here are a few lessons from the road. In this case, it’s the metaphorical road that is well travelled that I never seem to learn a lesson from. So I am writing them here for posterity.

Looking like a hassled frazzled mother will win you little sympathy and few friends

The general mood in Australia these days is that children are the scourge of society and parents are irresponsible breeders. Never mind the major factor of human nature (i.e. it’s instinctual for all animals to breed, including humans) and the old well worn arguments of having to create a future generation to keep the world running. And HELLO! Babies are as cute as kittens! It’s a civil duty to have them!

Yelling at your three year old to ‘STOP’ as she’s about to run out of the airport doors and onto the road while carrying a 6 month old strapped to your chest will not actually inspire people to help you catch the three year old. It will make them step out of her way, thus clearing her path to imminent demise, all the while shaking their heads at you and cluck for being so entitled as to expect someone else to help you manage your misbehaving offspring.

Looking like a hassled frazzled mother will win you at least one friend who you wished could have been your best friend forever and ever and ever

On the flight from Perth back to Darwin the unfortunate woman who was travelling solo and sitting behind us was mercifully left alone by us most of the flight, except for the final descent. There was sufficient shit scattered throughout our row that there was no longer any room for me and Harrie, so I perched on one of the empty seats in this lady’s row. And then the Sprog had to join us. And once we were all settled in and the seatbelt sign was on and thus we were permanently there – she told me it was the first time in four and a half years that she had travelled without her kids. WTF?! WHY DIDN’T SHE SAY SOMETHING? And here I was subjecting her to my two. And did I mention the Sprog has a serious personal space issue? At least she didn’t comment on this lady’s boobs.

As the plane was going down we conspiratorially chatted about how some days we just want to run away from the kids for a break. And how travelling with them can be worse than the hot hot fires of hell. And how, regardless of the best laid plans, both our Misters inevitably end up sitting alone, sans kids, reading a paper in peace.

Total best friend material. But she lives in Perth 😦

That’s the first two lessons I learnt on the road this trip. Feel free to share any invaluable learnings of your own in the comments. After all… Parenthood – we’re in it together!

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7 thoughts on “Lessons from the road… and air… and junior suite :: Part I

  1. Um, I’m thinking Mr needs a prod. I loved travelling with the girls. I’d take an aisle seat and they’d have a window and middle and swap.

    It gets better when they’re older.

  2. Well, when E was 9 weeks old we went to visit Adelaide to introduce her to family and friends. She slept the whole flight only to pry one eye open and grizzle when she was hungry – which was quickly solved by milk – YAY!
    Then we went to Hawaii when she was 15 months old. We were denied a bassinette seat because some stupid bitch had her SHOPPING in there and wouldn’t move. I gave her the stink eye the whole plane trip. I can’t remember how long it was – but it was the longest stink eye I’ve ever thrown, that’s for bloody sure. I managed to get 3 seats together, and E slept on 2 of then (with the arm rest up between them) and all was fine until she bloody rolled off the seats and onto the floor with a thud. I swear the whole plane heard me announce ‘SHIT’ as I scooped her up and lay her back down before she had a chance to wake up, realise what had happened and begin to cry.
    The trip home we got a bassinette seat. And it was the easiest flight EVER. And knowing how wonderful it was made me want to find the bitch from the first flight and stab her in her over-made,mascara clogged eye with a fork.
    Travelling with children – it’s so much fun! lol

    1. Oh that sounds horrible! At least Miss E sleeps! We had an o’night flight with F from Japan – left at 9pm, arrived in Cairns at 7am – she did not sleep one wink at all. HORROR.

      1. Actually I have been thinking more about this – what on earth was that stupid confused woman doing taking shopping BACK to the US? How dumb was she? Doesn’t she know that the US is shopping heaven? Silly lady. Deserved the stink-eye.

  3. Actually, when I travel alone (without kids) – I am more than willing to help out another parent entertain their children. I always feel like I am missing something – so I suspect your Perth friend didn’t mind in the least!

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