We have just recently returned from our 12 day vacation to Myrtle Beach SC / Concord NC. My husband and I packed up our 2 children and embarked on a fun filled adventure with my parents to their condo in Myrtle, followed by a visit with family in Concord. I have several tales to tell…the first of which consisted of just trying to get on the damn plane.
We thought we had packed like pros. Enough clothing for 2 adults, a toddler, and an infant, 2 golf bags and all the accessories that go with the sport, toiletries, DVDs and the portable player, the laptop, bottles, formula, diapers, wipes, small toys, YOU NAME IT. We managed to get it all into 4 check-in, 3 carry-on, and 3 personal bags for the plane. Oh, plus the double stroller. We marveled at how we were going to navigate all this stuff out of the van, onto the plane, off the plane, and then into a rental van with 2 car seats, in addition to all my parents’ luggage as well. We pros came prepared, however, and bungee cords were checked in the bags.
We got to the airport, got the bags out of the van, parked, and moved to go through check in when Tony realized we were short a bag. WTF!!! It was the camera bag, holding both our video camera, and the new digital camera that is one of our more prized possessions in that it actually cost (grumble, grumble) more than our 60” TV. Trying not to panic from our amateur mistake, we made a game time decision that involved getting the bags checked, and then me going on with the kids and my parents through security while Tony went back home for the bag. I managed to push the double stroller holding my children and a few of the bags with one arm and the weight of my body, while pulling along a carry on bag with the other. My parents managed to take one of my bags in addition to their own. With their help I some how managed to get me and Sofia’s shoes off, the laptop out of the bag into a bin, and all our bags and the double stroller folded up onto the conveyor belt, while holding the baby and trying to coax Sofia to walk through the metal detectors. She wasn’t having it. After much reassurance and pleading, she finally walked through, at which point I followed with a resounding BEEP. Damn. I forgot my cell phone in my pocket. I dropped that in a bin, walked through again and made it only to have one of the security dudes ask if I had left a DVD player in my laptop bag. Damn. I forgot that too. Then I had to get the bottle cooler inspected because I forgot to “declare” that there was liquid in it.
I finally get through, my parents behind me are getting their stuff together, and my mother cries out, “where’s my tote bag?” She also realizes that she had left behind another carry-on. I can’t much complain, because this all happened while she was trying to help me through the line. Turns out that she had left them at the very beginning of the security area, and while we were immersed in my security check struggle, the bomb squad had been called to investigate suspicious packages that had been left behind. If they announced anything, I certainly didn’t hear it. But my dad, utterly embarrassed, had to go up to one of the officers and claim the packages, and apologize to the guys in rubber gloves that were prepared to test for combustive substances.
The stress didn’t end there, as the plane was completely loaded (except us) and ready to go with no sign of Tony at the gate. We were just about to board, begging them to wait for him, when he came running down the terminal to the gate with the camera bag in tow. He was sweating all over and looking just as harried as me. We finally got settled, took off, and eventually got to relax with a much needed $7 Coors Light (bastards). Thankfully the kids were good on the flight. Little Dominic had a great time getting switched off between us and my parents. Sofia was immersed in her Little Einstein’s video, and managed to go through most of the flight before she turned to me and announced, “I’m all done with the airplane.”
“Me too sweetheart, me too!”