The Tale of Coast-to-Coast Travel With the Baby Bundle, Part Uno

WHY THIS AIRLINE SUCKS, AND ROCKS:

I flew to California at the beginning of the month to visit my parents, with the then 11 week old bundle.  Sunday started at 4:30am ET when the bundle woke up in Atlanta, and ended on Sunday at 8:30pm PT when we went to bed at my parents’ house in California.  We’re supposed to fly direct, so no problem right?  I was flying alone, sans Husband, by myself, alone, with the bundle, but no problem, right?  I can handle it.  I am woman, hear me roar.  ahem.  I blame all of my problems on the weather.  

I had booked a direct flight for 9:30am on an airline that I will not name, but it rhymes with Smelta Airlines. Traveling ‘infant in arms’.  I checked it the night before, online.  No problem.  I checked it at 6am to print the boarding pass and I had been moved to an 8:30 am flight, with a layover in Salt Lake City.  Crap.  No email or phone call to me.  Just moved.  I had booked it using miles so I figured I had 2 choices.

  1. Haul butt to the airport and try to make the flight, even though a 3 hour layover would suck more than a Hoover
  2. Forgo my points and book a new flight for another time

So, I went with option 1.  Woke Husband and hauled all our butts to airport.  So that is the SUCKS part.  Thanks Smelta.

On the leg from Atlanta to SLC I was bumped to first class, which ROCKS, where I had a very speedy, helpful security line.  Thanks Smelta!

Highlights from this flight, because I love bullets:

  • I could not fenagle stroller dismemberment by myself at the jetway, nice man helped me out
  • sat next to 50ish business man in suit and tie who offered to hold bundle while I had breakfast (I declined, he was wearing a TIE)
  • bundle woke up, so no breakfast for me (I planned to eat at home but didn’t get to because of the previously mentioned hauling)
  • walked up and down plane
  • returned to seat after everyone ate and super nice stewardess offered to hold bambino while I ate (I declined, way above her job description, and he might spit up)
  • changed very poopy diaper in teeny tiny airplane bathroom
  • very nice stewardess again offered, insisted actually, and I took her up on it while I snarfed an omlette and fruit off of china, with real flatware!
  • nursed bambino on takeoff, landing, and twice in-between

On the 3 hour layover I changed 2 diapers, 1 baby outfit and nursed the bundle twice, to keep him happy.  I was in the world’s smallest terminal.  I don’t think it could have even been called a terminal.  Maybe a termini.  It was lunchtime, I was starving, and my options were a Starbucks or a Quiznos.  It was hot in the termini, I had a fussy bundle and I had lost my crucial hair clip.  So what was my lunch of choice?  

A frappuccino.  With whipped cream.

Yes, I spent 1,000,000 calories on my lunch, and it was worth it.  So what if my ass would no longer fit in my assigned seat?

The flight to California was not more eventful, but definitely more draining.  I was able to take down the stroller by myself thank you.  It was a puddle jumper and we actually had to walk out on the tarmac and up the stairs to this tiny plane.  I’m standing on the stairs and I see 6-7 men in front of me and a few are looking at me, looking at me and eyeing the happy bundle in my arms.  They are worried.  I can see it in their eyes.  I make light of it, “who’s the lucky person who gets to sit next to me?”  They all laugh, nervously. 

The flight is about to take off so I take out a bottle of formula.  I know.  But the seats are so close together and the plane was so small I was uncomfortable whipping out a boob.

And then, the crying started.  The bundle cried the entire 1:45 minute flight.  I got up and stood in the coffee nook for most of the flight, trying to calm the bundle down.  It didn’t work.  I’d go back to my seat periodically when I thought he was calm, but no.  However, I have to say that the guy sitting next to me at the window was awesome, as was the guy across the aisle from me.  Both made valiant efforts to cheer the baby up, goo- goo noises all over the place, and they were rewarded with smiles.  But the minute they stopped, holy hell.  

We finally made it to the airport, met my parents where I gladly gave the stroller to grandma and collapsed in the car.  Oh wait, why am I blaming this on the weather?  That was the Sunday that Atlanta saw a snowstorm that dumped 3 inches in just a few hours and the airport cancelled most of the morning flights.  So, I was luckily on one of the last flights out of there before the storm hit.  

Part II of this story will recount the awesomeness of the visit itself.  Including trips down memory lane such as this beauty.

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4 responses to “The Tale of Coast-to-Coast Travel With the Baby Bundle, Part Uno

  1. Oooooooooh honey. Oh honey. That is quite an ordeal. Just another star in your crown, though. Anyone who has flown with a kid was feeling major sympathy for you. And don’t you hate those “oh god” glances from the people you’re boarding the plane with? I wanna say, “Hey, make way, this is the freakin’ FUTURE I’m holding!”

    And you live in Atlanta?? Why aren’t we BFFs?

  2. O man I feel your pain. I have three sons but never flew with them until youngest was 9 months (no reason–we just never went anywhere). Remember that news story about the lady who breastfed and the flight attendant told her to cover up? My husband went insane over hearing that. I would love to see a mom hold up the baby to the passengers and say “Folks, do you want a crying baby or breastfeeding?” They’d probably all yell, “Give him the breast!”. Anyway, back to your story…..poor baby. Hope his/her ears did not hurt.

  3. Love your blog!

    I agree with Becky, anyone who has traveled with a kid was feeling some major sympathy for you.

    My only tip for traveling with babes (and it saved me during mid-flight) is to have them wear those plastic/rubber pants over the diaper. It will help to ‘contain’ any mishaps.

    Hope the return trip is/was better!

  4. termini, haha!

    sorry to hear about the crying. when oscar and i went to CA he was over a year, and we flew over night both ways, so he mostly slept in my lap. I highly reccommend this for your next trip when the bundle is older.

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