Holiday travel is not for the faint of heart. Holiday travel with a child makes me want to send my regrets to those close to my heart.
Before we even cross the airport threshold, I've questioned our holiday plans a few times. I'm squeezing one too many things into my rolly-bag, and I wonder how it's possible that a baby half my size can require twice the amount of stuff as me. In long-term parking, I consider the fact that it took an hour-and-a-half to get to the airport, yet we haven't even begun the journey.
The security lines are extra long this time of year ('tis the season), which is lovely because, in case you forgot, I'm carrying a lot of extra stuff. Plus a baby the size of Santa's sack. Our fellow comrades in line are neither merry nor bright, because...well, because they're in line too. Homeland Security isn't bright and merry, because...well, because they're Homeland Security.
Waiting at the gate, I have to supervise an overstimulated baby, who manages to find emergency exit doors, random buttons to push and her way into the crowd of people rushing to their gates. Travelers bop like moving targets; my toddler walks like a drunkard. It's a video game gone awry.
Three hours later, we finally squeeze down the too small aisle to the thousandth row of the plane (in case you forgot: with stuff and baby). I feel some sense of relief when we are finally have all our paraphernalia situated, and I get the small consolation of resting my weary bones down on an unforgiving middle seat that's the width of one ass cheek.
But, wait, travel still has not officially commenced!
I start to wonder if it's too late to turn back. Microwave popcorn and a glass of chardonnay starts to sound like a sufficient holiday feast to me.
Sorry dear relatives. Popcorn might not be quintessentially Norman Rockwell, but neither is getting from here to eternity during the holiday rush. We'll plan our next trip over Arbor Day when things are a little less hectic. Maybe, we'll plant a tree instead of cutting one down!