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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Coast To Coast

Yesterday, the kids and I flew back home from the East Coast. That's right -- I flew coast to coast with a 4-year-old and a 6-year-old. And had a lot of fun!
Here they are on the flight back home, a little before we landed. Excited to see Dad after more than two weeks away!

Both the kids were great travelers. I admit I was more than a little nervous at the prospect of all that time in an airplane when the short folks would have me outnumbered two to one. But both legs of the trip went very smoothly. Here we are on the way out, with BB enjoying all the perks of air travel: icy water in a straw cup and tray tables down. (Note the pillow she made, which she'd had the foresight to pack in her carry-on). What can I say -- life is just better when a straw is involved.

And BJ was happy to have the window seat -- BB was content to let him have it for 3 of the 4 legs of the journey. Not until our flight from Phoenix to California did she finally feel courageous enough to sit by the window. Up until then, she wanted to sit by me (and BJ was having nothing to do with the aisle seat) so she could hold my hand at take-off. She informed me she was fine once in the air and had no problem with landing, but taking off made her nervous.

Yesterday's flights went especially smoothly: we arrived 45 minutes early for our arrival into Phoenix and landed at home a little early too. (I had to giggle at the flight attendant's comment: "We hope this doesn't inconvenience anybody too much, but we'll be arriving 45 minutes early. We know that you'd be sure to tell all your friends if we were 45 minutes late, so we hope you'll also tell them that we were 45 minutes ahead of schedule." Southwest airlines still has a sense of humor.) And maybe it was because we arrived so early or because the crew was so happy with us (the same stewardess informed us all over the PA that we were the best set of passengers they'd had in three days. "Y'all were just awesome!" Which my kids took very personally and were very pleased to hear) or maybe I just have the kind of kids that invite such attention, or maybe they do this all the time. But as we were leaving, the stewardess made a bit deal of asking if the kids wanted to see the cockpit.

Of course! So we were invited in, and as we tried not to crowd in too far, I excitedly pointed out that this would be the same sort of cockpit that Grandpa D would have been in all those years that he was a pilot. The stewardess and pilots clearly heard that and took it to heart and even offered to let the kids sit in the pilots seats (!!!) to which I said, somewhat astonished, no thank you. (Sorry Dad, I know it would have been the amazing photo op, but I would have been too nervous about what they might touch or grab or mess up to pay attention to taking a picture! Besides, the kids seemed a little nervous about the idea.) But we got in as far as we could, and both of them, especially BJ, were very interested as the pilots showed them the throttle and all the instruments. "All that is really complicated!" BJ announced.

I asked if it would be against the rules to snap a pic or two, and they kindly said to go right ahead. Here they are, agog at all the complicated stuff:

And then I asked if I could see their faces. "Wow!" was BJ's final assessment.

We'd spent two weeks in Delaware and New Jersey, visiting family, and I decided to spend more time with the visit and to give myself a break from the blog (which is why it's been silent over here). But we had lots of adventures and I will be playing catch-up in the next week, reporting on everything from zoo visits to meeting my 3 month old niece to BJ's first visit from the tooth fairy. Stay tuned!

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