Taking baby steps to the big wild ride
Errands with kids a blessing compared with flight
WE’RE not going anywhere special these school holidays … unless you count some wildly educational trips for the kids as they tag along to the bank, the post office and the computer repair shop.
I’m ignoring the smug social media photos from people on far-flung adventures, opting instead to recall the turbulence of aeroplane travel with small children.
Often it begins with the X-ray machine at the airport. If you have a baby, she’ll have dozed off at check-in in your chest carrier but you’ll be required to haul her out for screening. She won’t sleep again until 10 minutes before landing.
Eager-traveller littlies insist on removing and declaring all goods from their bags so security can clear their teddy, 14 cars and horrid pony toys – holding up the irritable business guy behind, next to whom your family will inevitably be seated later.
Boarding, you’re met with dismayed looks from passengers within a 3m radius of your seats – but relief from other parents anxious to shift some of the heat when their own kids get unruly.
Settling in, your offspring closely examine the safety information card, making loud reference to the possibility of the plane ditching into the sea.
They relentlessly fiddle with every single button, eventually reprogramming the TV for the chap in seat 15C to Peppa Pig.
They pop up like meerkats from their seats to chat, again and again, with the people over the back.
They innocently kick the chair of the lady in front. They lose all their Textas, sultanas and small toys down the side of their arm- rest. They try to open the orange juice container before you can get to it, resulting in an eruptive splash and a sticky child.
They fight for the window seat, fight for the aisle seat, fight for the iPad.
They read a single page of their book and declare they’re bored before takeoff, then shout accurately but alarmingly, “We’re going down!” on landing.
So, I’m quite content to stay grounded during these holidays.
If getting there is half the fun, our family jaunt to the post office is looking pretty promising.