Tuesday, July 31, 2007

If this were only Vegas

When I go to Vegas... OK, the two times that I've ever been to Vegas, and on the rare occasions that I have been to other casinos, I prefer to play the slot machines. They don't involve other humans so I run a low risk of embarrassing myself, and I like the lights and the tinkling and the beeping sounds. I also sometimes win a few dollars, or Euros, depending on where I am. I just push the button, pull the lever, and hope for three of a kind.

Yesterday we went to the doctor. The baby is about 14 ounces, the ultrasound tech said. Everything is in order. The heart is beating fine, all limbs are there and measuring fine, and we got a great view of the little spinal cord, the little face, and the little profile.

It occurred to me that, in many cultures, three boys would be a blessing. After all, traditionally, girls were not as useful. They couldn't be heirs. They wouldn't carry on the family name. To marry them off you needed a dowry. I've been reading a series of books about Royalty, and those people seemed to always want boys, but they kept getting girls.

My friend Betsy, the one who stole all the girl cells for her twin girls, reminded me that, even though it seems disappointing now, I will not have to worry about purchasing Barbies or Bratz dolls, or any number of horrid things. Although he feels my pain, I know Steve is relieved to know that he will not have to be responsible for a young teenage girl who insists that everyone else is wearing halter tops with no underwear and too much make-up. And let's face it, it is more cost effective, as many of the baby clothes we have will be given a third go around in less than 5 years.

I prefer to think of it in terms of the boys I have now. They are so wonderful. Sure, I'm sad this baby is not a girl, but another one of these boys is still pretty darn good.

Three of a kind. If only we were in Vegas. I can hear the coins tinkling.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Where's The Beef?

If you've ever tried to cook a meal for a couple of toddlers and their adults, you know it's a lost cause. There are very few meals that are appealing to both age groups, especially when the toddlers can love Mac and Cheese one day, but the other day find it more useful as an art medium, squishing it onto th table top and smearing it around to create pretty pictures.

Last night Steve cooked dinner. About once a week he cooks steak tips, or a roast, and YES, he even makes potatoes and veggies. And the funny thing is, we know the kids probably will not eat this food. We do everything we can think of, from making "yummy" sounds to cutting it up into appealing bite sized bits, to asking them to eat just a bite, then telling Nick he can't have more salsa unless he at least TRIES something else... And at the end of the meal, it's just more trouble than it's worth.

But last night Steve was cutting up the roast he made, and he took a bite as he was carving. "Mmmm," he said. "This is a good roast! Nate, would you like some?" and he extended a fork with a tiny, bite sized bit of roast at the end of it to our youngest son.

Nathan looked at the roast, and reached out hesitantly, as though he were afraid of the meat burning him. Then he carefully took it off the fork and turned his back to taste. "Is it good?" Steve asked. And Nate gave an enthusiastic "YEAH!" which is the answer he gives about half the time, no matter what. (the other answer being an enthusiastic "NO!")

Steve was bustling getting the rest of dinner together, and I was setting the table, and I looked down and saw that Nathan was chewing on something I couldn't identify, something large he was holding in his hand, which Gunther was also taking an interest in... and then I realized it was an Entire Slice Of Meat. Somehow he had managed to steal a whole slice of meat off the plate from kitchen counter, and was happily gnawing on it, sucking out all the juice he could.

I took the meat away from him and placed it on his plate, cutting it up into safe, non-choking-hazard sized bits. It was as though a transformation had taken place. Nathan no longer wanted anything to do with the meat. Apparently, only gigantic slabs will do, and only while running around the kitchen.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

The Buzz

Thursday was hot. I am quite sure I mentioned that.

So that afternoon I decided to take the boys outside and plug in the sprinkler. What could be better than a little water for two cranky boys in 90 degree heat?

I went through the whole process of getting Sprinkler-ready. Swimsuits, sunscreen, hats. I plugged in the sprinkler. I dragged it into the middle of the lawn. I turned it on. The boys were moments from running into the water when suddenly Nicholas screamed.

Nick screams a lot, but this was a real scream. This was a full of pain and panic scream. And Then I saw the bee flying around and I realized what had happened. "Oh, Honey!" I said, reaching for him. "Did the bee sting you?" And then I felt a sharp pinch, just as I heard the buzz, of something angry right on the underarm flesh of my right arm.

Of course I screamed, in surprise and then in fear, because there were more than a few bees buzzing about at this point, and I realized that the nest must be close to where we were standing, and that the bees were angry, and that we needed to get away NOW.

I swept a screaming Nick up in one arm(the stung one) and a screaming and indignant Nathan up in the other (he was just about to HAVE FUN!) and headed up the steps to the porch, Gunther hot on my heels and barking. When I put Nick down to open the door I glanced down and saw Gunther with both paws over his nose, a Yellow Jacket firmly planted between his paws, wings spread.

It turns out we have a huge nest in the ground right next to the sandbox. I caught the wasps as they went in and out. I tried using wasp spray, but the can was almost empty, so now I need more. Until then, I just don't feel comfortable taking the boys outside.

Nick is fine - his sting was on his chest, and looks ok. My underarm has a HUGE pink welt on it that itches constantly. Gunther's nose is fine.

But those Yellow Jackets... I not only want them dead, I want them to suffer. They can build their nest on the other end of the property - there is plenty of room - but stay AWAY from where my kids play.

Friday, July 27, 2007

A Typical Family Dinner

Yesterday was an eventful day. So eventful, in fact, that it will take three or four posts just for me to get everything on this blog. And instead of starting with the first thing that happened, I'm going to start with this gem, because I don't want to loose any of it's hilarity.

Yesterday was hot, around ninety something degrees. And we have no air conditioning. This is why, when the kids got a little wet before nap, I stripped them down to diaper and underwear, and just let them run around that way. All day. Even though we have been trying to establish a "Must Wear Pants" rule for Nick, who seems to strip off everything each time he pees.

We were eating dinner - which means Steve and I were at the table and the boys were running around - when Nathan suddenly made an appearance sans diaper. Nude. Completely naked. "Where is your diaper?" I asked. Nathan looked down, as though surprised at the fact that he wasn't wearing one. "Go get a diaper and I'll put it on you," I said. Nathan ran to the bathroom, his little bottom wagging behind him. Nicholas told us that he had taken Nate's diaper off. He was, for some reason, pretty proud of this fact.

Nathan returned with his old diaper, which was indeed soaked and I asked him to go get a new diaper. We also tried to convince Nicholas to bring us a new diaper. "Nick, " we said, "You took the diaper off, so please bring us a clean diaper. Nathan doesn't use the potty like you do, and he's going to pee all over the floor." Nicholas dragged his feet and asked "Why" a few dozen times while Nathan ran back and forth through the kitchen, from the table to the bathroom, free and naked and I actually envied him because I was hot and he looked so much cooler than I did.

Finally Nicholas headed off towards the bathroom, walking backwards and very, very slowly, his eyes on us the whole time, as though he would slip away the moment we broke eye contact... and then suddenly he started wailing.

The cry began softly and then grew in distress and horror and pitch and volume, and finally he screamed "He pooped! Nathan pooped!" Nicholas was pointing to a spot in the bathroom doorway, and was also holding his leg and foot in a very awkward and stiff way.

Nathan was happily running in circles around us at this point, and it appeared that he was indeed responsible for the mess, as quite a bit of it was still covering him, and he was busy smearing it over as much of his leg and torso as he could reach. He was laughing and babbling and having a happy time. Nicholas was crying and screaming and begging me to get the poop off his toe. And I was laughing because of all the time we had spent trying to explain to Nick why Nathan needed a diaper, and this event was doing a far, far better job.

Eventually I just picked the kids up and dumped them in the tub. The floor was easily cleaned. And I haven't laughed like that in a long, long time.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Lesson in Pounds

See that strange baby tape-measure thing up there at the top of my blog? The baby counter that happily informs me that the baby is 19 weeks and 4 days old, and that there are only 315 more days until the baby is due to arrive? Oh joy?

The first thing it gives is the baby's weight, or the average weight of a developing baby-to-be given the time of development... and it says 10.5 ounces. That's less than one pound, right? It's hard to comprehend, because I have REALLY started gaining weight now, my tummy leading the way wherever I go, and it's depressing for me to think that it's less than 1 pound baby, and seven pounds of pop tarts.

Actually, I have several books that give average breakdowns of where the weight IS, and what it is that is supposed to gain weight. Wanna know? Well I'll tell you anyway. The breakdown, for an average weight woman who gains about 30 pounds during her WHOLE pregnancy, is as follows.

Baby: 7.5 lbs. (that's about a quarter of the total weight gain)
Maternal stores of Fat, protein, and nutrients: 7 lbs (hey - that's also a quarter of the weight gain. Which brings us to only about half... where is the rest of the weight?)
(yes, I said BLOOD, because pregnant women actually make and pump more blood which means mosquitoes love you and your heart and lungs have to work harder, and oh yeah, your gums bleed when you brush your teeth) : 4 lbs. of blood.
Body Fluids: 4 pounds (These would be fluids other than...)
Amniotic Fluid (the fluids we do not discuss because grown men pass out): 2 lbs.
Uterus: 2 lbs.
Breasts: 2 lbs. THAT is why my bras no longer fit
Placenta : 1.5 lbs.

There. Now you can't say I never tried to teach you anything. Even if you didn't want to learn it. But seriously, I am always surprised by how much non-baby there is in there, even if I know that my personal weight gain will be 8 pound baby, 20 pounds snickers bars, and 15 pounds everything else.

Conversations With Nick

Nick has gotten to the point where he will attempt conversation with people he know. He likes to talk, has a wonderful vocabulary, and has no difficulty expressing himself when he wants to tell you something.

But other times, conversation with him is a little bit odd, and seems little... disjointed. Take this conversation, which took place just yesterday. Nick woke up from his nap and then crawled into bed with me, where I was curled up with my eyes shut, trying to sleep.

Nick: I love you, Mommy!
Me (hugging him): Oh, I love YOU! You are so big, sometimes I can't believe you're my baby!
Nick: You're wearing a stripy shirt!
Me: Yes, I am.
Nick: Are you wearing underwear?
Me: Yes, I am.
Nick: Why are you laughing?

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Rain, Rain... GO AWAY!

It didn't really rain in France. It was windy, a cool, harsh, steady wind that blew everything out towards sea... The wind would keep you off the beach and slam doors and drive you bonkers with the sound of WIND... but there was no rain.

Here, there is rain. In fact, it seems that every day we have a good chunk of time to go out and play, it's either rainy or has just rained. I was going to take the boys to the park today, but this morning the sky is white and the ground is soaked and I'm thinking we should find something else to do. Perhaps the Children's Museum, which will cost us $5 per person, including me (how much of a rip off is THAT? Like I'm going to play "going to the dentist" or "Grocery Shopping" with their toys? As though I didn't get enough of that in real life?)

Monday, July 23, 2007

Magic in Life

When we were in France, I took Nicholas to Azur Park, formerly a called (and better known as) Luna Park. It's one of those seasonal amusement parks made entirely of recycled scrap metal, lights, and loud noises. When we were kids we used to go whenever we could get my parents to take us, and we would spend French Francs on stupid rides until we collapsed from the brain damage and unsafety of it all.

Nicholas loved Luna Park. But you would never know it from any of the pictures we took. He was so overwhelmed that he hardly smiled, he just had this glazed look of brain overload and panic, the panic of knowing that he had limited time to ride ALL THE RIDES. The only time he smiled was when he was driving the little race cars, and his smile was so wide it was amazing, but unfortunately I have no pictures because Jamie and I were too busy LAUGHING because Nick, as happy as he was, as thrilled as he was, completely misses the point of steering, and kept happily driving at full speed into the walls and other cars. The guy running the ride had to hop on in back and steer for him.

I am not finished with Harry Potter. Give me a break. Nathan hates it when he notices I am doing anything that is not focused on him, and immediately comes over and tries either being so cute I have to squeeze his cheeks, or so bratty I want to sell him to the Gypsies. Probably the ones that run Luna Park.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Winter Garden

Here's a picture of the Winter Garden.

Yesterday, filled with a good mix of excitement, shame, embarrassment, and anticipation, I found myself rushing out to secure my copy of the final Harry Potter book.

I'm too busy reading it now to post anything proper.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Sur Le Pont D'Avignon

One of the things I did while in France was to leave the boys at home for a day and take Lillian to Avignon. The old city of Avignon is beautiful, enclosed behind ancient walls. And there are a lot of touristy items of interest, including the Pope's Palace, the Church itself, The gardens, and of course, the bridge, which reaches about halfway across the Rhone.
Avignon is a few hours from where my parents are, so we left on the early side - 8am. That's early, right? What I had failed to realize fully, or to take into account, anyway, was that it was JULY, and therefore FESTIVAL TIME! Every year there is a huge art festival in the city, and hundreds and hundreds of actors and performers flock to the city and had out flyers to their shows. Hundreds of performances. People walking around in costume, trying to drum up business...
It took us over an hour to find a parking space once we actually made it to the city. We ended up parking across the river and taking a bus (free for festival season!) to the old city, and thank goodness we happened upon it, because I was very close to just stopping the car along the side of the road.
Once we finally got out and started walking, however, we were quickly swept up in the craziness of it all. Street performers sang songs, played instruments... and his old guy whistled a lot and balanced canes on people's heads and shoulders. Everyone wore their costumes. A group of people were dressed as animals. There were flocks of flight attendants. A huge Chinese Dragon danced down the street. One group of performers dressed in Elizabethan collars and sang madrigals, then dragged standers by into a huge human game of chess. I saw posters for so many shows I lost count - the were plastered all over the outside of the bank, above the heads of the people selling bracelets and paintings. Shows including 12 Angry Men (in French), the Vagina Monologues (in French) and this beauty:

All in all, it was a busy and fun day. Festival time is fun. You should go. Park across the river and take the bus - it will save you time and stress.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Life Goes On

In the past year my parents have had a lot of work done at the house in France, including fixing up the lower garden. Here is the view I had from my bed:

And here is the view from above, from the winter garden:

I can't post anything else today because Nicholas has his VERY FIRST DENTIST APPOINTMENT at 8am, and Nathan has a fever of 102, either a side effect of the inoculations from yesterday's check-up, or (more likely) something he picked up at the doctor's office. Either way, I have some getting dressed and some juggling to do while the Wiggles are still on TV and the going is good.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Odds and Ends

Here is a photo of the microwave in kitchen in France. Notice anything odd? Missing? No? OK, then pretend you are cooking a microwave meal, and it says to heat for three minutes. You pop it in the microwave, shut the door and press... right! NO NUMBERS! Honestly, cooking anything in this microwave is a combination of luck and luck. I could get it to turn on, but I couldn't figure out how to time anything correctly, so everything ends up cold or, more likely, so hot that you have to set it aside for 24 hours or the skin in you mouth will melt off. Here is a picture of the beach. Look at all the people. I can honestly say that I can think of about thirty five other things I would rather do than hang out with the hundreds of nearly naked people on that beach. One of my life's goals is to AVOID crowds, not dress my pregnant body in a bathing suit and sit in the midst of them. Also, sun is bad for you, and the water is cold. I prefer warmer beaches (Jamaica) with less people and free Margaritas. Also, there was a beach closer to my parents which always had about a third of the people at it, so we just went there.
Finally, here is a picture of Nicholas and his very first piece of chewing gum EVER! He didn't really know what to do with it, so it went in and out of his mouth a lot.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Sainte Rosaline's Curse

Nathan really missed his ride-on toys while we were gone. We tried explaining to him that this particular truck was not a sit-on truck, but he found a way.
When in France, we all tend to drink a lot of wine. At least everyone else did. I sat and watched and sipped lemon soda. Nevertheless, I was still excited and interested in visiting the Chateau Sainte Rosaline, where I would be able to visit the wine cellars, perhaps taste a few wines, and then visit the chapel, where they actually have the preserved body of Saint Rosaline herself. (Doesn't that sound gory? I KNOW!) Many have tried to visit the cellar and the chapel, but few have succeeded, as it always seems to be closed.

In any case, early one morning Lillian and I packed Nicholas, Nathan, and my brother Jamie into the car, and we drove over winding roads to the chateau. It is actuall a beautiful place. One side of the parking lot looks like this - a green expanse of grape vines. If you then turn around, you'll see something that looks like this - a big read sculpture of something that looks like a person dancing with a ball.

Actually, the Chateau displays all sorts of art (what goes better with wine?). I think this is a wonderful thing. But I do have to question the taste of it. I mean, I am not a huge fan of modern art, but I don't wish to dispute it's place in the world. It's just that, it seems to me at a Chateau, particularly a very old one, where they keep the body of a Saint, they might choose art that is a bit more in Harmony with it's surroundings. That's all I'm saying.

In any case, if you're wondering how the tour of the wine cellars were, or what I thought of the Chapel and Saint Rosaline herself... we didn't see them. We chose a Friday because they were closed Mondays, but what we didn't realized was that they don't open until 2:30 PM. That's 14:30. As it was 10am, and we had two small children with us, we simply purchased a couple of cases of wine and then left. I'll be back, though. Oh, I shall return. At about 2:30 on a Thursday.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Storming The Bastille

I did have a lot of fun on my vacation this year. I got to spend some time with my family, my parents, my brothers, and my kids got to spend some time with their uncles and grandparents. I got to take Lillian to see the Pope's Palace, the castle at Grimaud, the market at St. Tropez. We got to go to the beach and swim in the pool. It was fun and I had a really great time and I JUST WANT TO MAKE THAT PERFECTLY CLEAR RIGHT NOW, BEFORE I GO ANY FURTHER!

The thing is, this vacation wasn't exactly what I thought it would be. I don't think it ever is, really, when kids are involved. I can't explain it without sounding petty, or selfish, or resentful, but you'll have to take my word for it. It is not the same with children.

The point is, even though I had a good time on this vacation, it was also kind of frustrating for me. I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings, especially because it isn't really anyone's fault, but I felt left out a lot while I was there. It's a side effect, I think, of travelling with kids. What ended up happening was that everyone decided to do their own thing. They wander in and out, going places while I fed the kids, or napped with the kids, or put them to bed. Our interaction with people took place when our lives would accidentally intersect in the kitchen - we would be finishing up our dinner and they would come in and start cooking dinner - a meal where it seemed everyone else would sit down and eat, or at least talk and hang out. This doesn't sound too bad, does it? But it gets old.

In any case, I know this is just the way things happened out. It wasn't planned, and I didn't make much of an effort to change anything because I knew there wasn't a big plot, it was just different people on different schedules.

But for some reason I thought the 14th would be different. The 14th of July isn't TOO big a deal in France, but when we were kids we always made a "fancy" dinner, and hung out with friends, and then watched the fireworks. For some reason - mixed signals, misunderstanding, wishful thinking - I had the idea that we would all have a dinner at home and then go out to watch the fireworks. I clung to this idea. My brothers each had a friend visiting, and my parents had friends visiting. I thought we would make a large and happy group. It was our last night before going home, and this would be a nice way to end the vacation.

But I didn't really think things through or talk to anyone about it. I came home from our last stroll into town tired, but looking forward to the night ahead. And nothing was happening. My mother, who still is far from 100%, was resting, and said my father had made plans for them to go out with their friends. My brothers and their friends were going out to a different place. And suddenly I realized that, because I had assumed we would all be together, I had completely botched things. It would be me and Lillian with the boys, home alone, again, scrounging for a meal in the fridge.

And something in me snapped. I was just so disappointed that I started to cry right there, in front of my mother and Lillian and my brother and everyone. I was so embarrassed, and felt so silly and selfish, that I expected everyone to be thinking about ME instead of going out and having fun and doing what they wanted to do. But it wasn't a little cry, see. It was one of those really big, sobbing, out of control things that prevented me from breathing or talking, and I had to work really hard not to let it get too loud because there were enough people watching me, for goodness sake, and I really didn't want a bigger audience.

Anyway, to make this long story short (too late, I know) guess what happened? I tried convincing everyone that I was fine, that we would be fine, that we could pick up something from town and we'd be fine... but instead both my brothers and my parents ended up canceling their dinner reservations. My brothers and Meg and Rachel drove into town and ordered 8 pizzas. They bought a patisserie out of fruit tarts. And they brought in a number of bottles of champagne (The best the Shell station had to offer, Winston claimed!). While we waited for the pizzas to be ready, they brought out a cheese platter. We all just sat and talked on the porch, watching the sun set and anticipating the fireworks.

And it was really wonderful. It was just what I wanted, better than I could have imagined, and I felt so ridiculous. But honestly, despite how embarrassed I was, it was the best night I had there. If you ever wanted to know what to get me as a gift, you can just get me that night and tie a bow around it. And just in case you don't get why I was so upset, or still don't understand what my problem was, or think I was too much the drama queen... well, I was over reacting. I knew this at the time, I just had no control over my body at that point. But in my defense, having kids is a lonely business, and it is sometimes hard to understand just how difficult it can be. Heather B. Armstrong recently wrote "For those of you who do not have kids and have ever wondered what life would be like, just go turn on a blender and stick your face in it. That."

Monday, July 16, 2007

Home Sweet Home

We are all now back home.

I think this week was the longest time I have gone without posting. VERY unlike me, I know, as this is the primary way I communicate with the world. I ALWAYS post. Weekends, Holidays, Busy days, while I'm cooking, cleaning, or in labor. I can usually post something.

The truth is, it was hard to motivate myself while I was in France, for many reasons, but I guess the biggest reason / excuse is that I was lazy.

Anyhow, I am now back, posting once more. Over the next few days I will post stories and events that took place in France, from our trip to the Pope's Palace to walking to the beach. And I'll probably throw in my version of my 14 Julliet tantrum as well. But today I don't have the energy. We didn't get home until midnight last night - that's 6am in France - and although we met with few real difficulties I arrived completely drained. (No one made me unpack my bag, and our second flight was only delayed by 35 minutes - unless you count the 90 minutes spent sitting on the runway the pilot announced was "standard procedure this time of day.")

I will say this: I get nostalgic about France. I may not take walks past our old house or anything like that, but I can't be there without thinking about how it used to be when I was there 20 years ago with my family. So leaving is always sad and bittersweet, even before I start thinking about the people I say goodbye to. I really don't see my family a lot, and I miss them already.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Sunday at the Port...

We went to Port Grimaud today after I got back from driving Steve to the airport.

Port Grimaud, in case I haven't told you and you do not already know, is a smallish town built on the water. Like Venice, it has a few streets, but mostly it has water instead. Each house or estabilshment opens on the water, and people can keep their boats docked in their backyards. Unlike Venice, Port Grimaud is not large, nor is it ancient, nor do they speak Italian.

We went there and it happened to be market day. Ironically, we also hit merket days in St. Tropez, in Grimaud, and in Ste. Maxime. Apparently we have a knock for it.

We ignored the market (mostly) and ate at a small place with live music, then took a ferry boat ride through the "streets" of the city. Then we got home, and everyone collapsed, because somehow eating and sitting on a boat for twenty minutes is very extremely draining and we couldn't take it any more.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Fancy Pants

Last night Steve and I went out to a Fancy Shmancy place for dinner. We both ordered the 6 course menu meal. I ate tons of things I am not supposed to, and I tried the pidgeon. Which, by the way, I associate with a dirty flying rat-bird, and not usually a gourmet dish. I didn't like it. But I LOVED the tuna AND the soup, not to mention the lemon sorbet or the "Amuse Bouches" and I mean, really, it was pretty awesome, with a view of St. Tropez over the water and a wonderful staff that made us feel OH SO SPECIAL!

This may be the last post for awhile. Steve is leaving tomorrow (SAD!) and taking his computer with him, and as I mentioned before, Dad took the other computer back with him to the states, and he's supposed to come back, he may return it, but seriously I can't be sure Vahe will be able to hook it all up before it's time to go home. But keep checking. You never know.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

On Vacation

Here is some photographic evidence that we are here and having fun.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Slow To Warm Up

We've been here for... five days? And we're finally starting to actually DO things.Things other than visit doctors and go grocery shopping. We took Lillian into town to look around yesterday, and then as far as the lunch spot on the beach for a meal. Today we walked into town to take the Ferry to St. Tropez, where we visited the market and walked along the port, and had a coffee and a croissant at a street cafe.

The boys loved the boat ride. Nicholas cried when we had to get off. Lillian bought a bag / basket, and I bought a watch - a cheap one - to replace the cheap one I bought for this trip before we left, but that broke, leaving me wondering how early it was when the boys woke me up this morning, and if I should put them back to sleep or give in...

When I get the chance to upload some pictures, I will. I'm just lazy about it.

Monday, July 02, 2007

I Am Alive

Getting here was a practice in some sort of self torture, or at least some sort of torture.

The first part of the trip went fine. And by that I mean the part where we drove down to Lillian's to pick her up. The part where we drove to the airport went fine, too. We did have to rush Steve, who claimed we had plenty of time (we did) and that we would be doing a lot of waiting around (we were supposed to) so why start too early?

When we got to the airport we discovered that our flight to JFK had been cancelled. Nothing was going from Logan to JFK. Because, apparently, there might be thunderstorms later.

We had to quickly reschedule for a flight to Laguardia, rush to meet that plane (the flight was lovely), CLAIM OUR LUGGAGE - they lost our stroller, so we had to fill out those forms, and then catch a couple of cabs to JFK which drove through the worst traffic you could imagine when you're trying to catch a flight. At JFK we were supposed to check in again, rush through security (again) and then catch our flight.

At JFK we were greeed by a line of apparent refugees which stretched from one side of the Delta terminal (the interbational side) and all the way around to the other side. This was the line TO GET INTO THE TERMINAL. We had two hours until our flight took off. The line didn't seem to be moving. No one knew anything. Tension was so high because, in a fit of supreme thoughtfulness Delta scheduled FOUR FLIGHTS to leave at EXACTLY 7PM. Half the people on line spoke no English. We spent over two hours on this line, certain we were going to miss our flight, as people yelled at each other, security people yelled at other people, and med with guns guarded the terminal entrance.

Once inside we stood in line again, where a very unhelpful Delta employee named Samantha R. (nametag) told us out seat assignments - the ones we had been given by Delta and printed out on paper with the Delta confirmation number - actually didn't count and weren't in her computer, so we wouldn't get to sit near each other. Also, it took her fifteen minutes to not locate a large plastic bag to put our carseat in. When we finally made it to security (and they stopped yelling at me for walking to the door to drop off my "oversized Luggage of a carseat" even though the guy in front of us - I swear - checked a box containing an air purifier - we rushed rushed rushed to the terminal...

...where they were boarding. But they hadn't assigned us seats. So we were told (yelled at, actually) to wait while everyone else boarded the plane while the ONE MAN WORKING THERE got them all on and then came to gave us our new, not together seats.

We then sat for two hours on the runway waiting to take off.

The Actual flight itself was wonderful, as far as flights go. We rented the car with no problem and we are here. Later I will document our trip to the emergency room, and how my father accidentally took the computer back to the states... We're really having a good time. No, really!