oh, we were funny


It was a long journey back to Tuvalu.
And many of us weren’t really feeling that well.
The worst part of the day was waiting for it to be time to go.
We ate all that we could eat, gave the remaining groceries to Vida (why did I buy jelly?) and exchanged gifts with her.
She gave me a tea towel with the national anthem on it -- and then she sang it for me.
Of course I cried.
The boys amused themselves by tossing bottles of soda water around. Which was especially amusing when one landed on the tile roof and no one could get it.
Finally our taxi arrived, and though he took a rather circuitous route to the airport it was a short drive through the countryside. We slipped through security and immigration and did a little shopping, and had a beer in the lounge and were boarded.
The flight was good - we had miniature food for lunch and kept ourselves pretty well entertained. I had a word with the attendants regarding the use of Youngest’s nebulizer. (My concern earlier in the week was that he wouldn’t be well enough to do both flights, nearly twelve hours door to door, without treatment.) I would need an electrical outlet. And are there even any electrical outlets on airplanes? Yes, it turns out that there were four on our plane. And while I would technically not be allowed to use them they would not actually prevent me from using one to give Youngest a treatment. This called to mind all kinds of scenarios, some of which involved me manhandling the blonde highly coiffed attendant near the coffee machine.
Fortunately none of this came to pass as Youngest, goosed up on a cocktail of medications, was doing quite well.
We landed and passed through customs uneventfully. We even fessed up about the coconut bread in our luggage and still not a single of our 14 (!) bags was opened.

We re-boarded for the second leg of our voyage and the giddyness set in.
Due to previous delays the airport was jammed up with outgoing flights and we sat for well over an hour.

I don’t remember this from other trips on planes, but on these four flights there was this mist. I’m not sure how to describe it other than alluding to a Michael Jackson concert (not that I’ve been to one) but this heavy cool mist/fog-like stuff was pumped throughout the plane above the windows and along the ceiling.
And this mist was heavier, from what we could see, in first class, giving the whole plane a spa-like effect.

Meanwhile, in our row, row 14, we were hacking and cracking.
Three of five of us had nasty coughs and I suddenly realized that we were the reason people get sick on planes.
“Row 14! We hack up a lung for you.” Middle coined this new ad campaign.
He also did a side splitting impersonation of the captain -
Uuuuuuhhhh, this is, uhhh, yer captain, uhhhh, speaking uuuuhhhh, from the flight deck...
it seems we've got a little uuuuhhhh delay, uhhh here on the ground, but uhhhh, we'll just sit tight for a few minutes....I've uuuuuhhhh, turned on the mist for ya....uuuuuhhhh.

Middle and I were across the aisle from each other and we were able to observe and discuss for the hour we were unable to use our electronic devices, which: we saw Myth Busters and we were pretty sure that that myth? was busted.

We noted it all, Middle and me.
Every weird noise that the plane made.(We distinctly heard the cargo doors being sawed open.)
The people up in row 7 who were having way too good a time.(AVIATION IS NOTHING NEW, ROW 7, YOU NEEDN'T APPLAUD AFTER THE LANDING.)
The guy who accepted a cell phone call during take off (OH YOU MUST BE SO IMPORTANT, GUY IN ROW 12.)
And the guy with the shakey arms who had to readjust his luggage in the overhead bin far too often causing the people around him to cringe in fear of being brained by it.

Of course you know I have to mention some airline behaviors that I feel need to be corrected.

First of all, people, do not use the back of my seat for leverage to haul your giant self out of your seat. I do not appreciate it.

Second: if you are going to watch The Producers? On your laptop? Please, use earphones. If I wanted to listen to The Producers it would be on my iPod.

Third: if you are listening to an iPod, and you are a few seats away from me, and I can clearly hear it? You might want to have your hearing checked.

Last(ly): I understand that airline travel is no longer glamourous and exciting. I know that while I still wear clothing that I might wear to a casual dinner somewhere, the rest of the world is slightly more relaxed about their travel wardrobe...but really, a tube top and shorts just larger than bikini panties just doesn’t seem like clothing someone would wear outside their backyard, let alone on an international flight.

And one last thing, while I am ranting:
Ladies, the world is not your hair salon.
Maniacally grooming your pony tail with your fingers, repositioning your hair clamping device, or otherwise rearranging your locks in the seat in front of me while I attempt to eat my miniature lunch? is inappropriate.
Arrange your hair before you leave your house and then either leave it alone or go to the ladies room to re-arrange it.

All right.
That’s pretty much it.
It was an odd sort of vacation, it was.
Having a head cold, staying up nights to check Youngest, and obsessing over how and when to go to a hospital if we needed one, numbed my mind to the fact that we were on a holiday.
I have sporadic flash memories of lovely lovely things -
the ocean
the sand
good food
the heat
the sounds
but they are interspersed with the worry and the work.
All this coupled with the fact that we did not travel to a new place, but returned to a place we had been last year made me feel less enthralled.
Even so, I know we were incredibly lucky to have such a wonderful trip.

front door lock

There's a metric ton of laundry waiting for me, but if you are lucky, I'll put together a post on the Sky Mall catalogue.



Jennifer said…
Welcome home :)
Badger said…
(a) Welcome home!
(b) Your trip sounded like such an ordeal that I couldn't think of any nice comments while you were actually on it. But I was thinking of you.
(c) The boy child has only just discovered MythBusters and now he is ADDICTED and records every single episode on our TiFaux.
(d) Britney Spears was on your flight?
Laura/PFG said…
clever clever, that last picture ;)

welcome back, you :)

sorry it wasn't as relaxing as you'd hoped, but it was DEFINITELY interesting, yes?

and i forgot what else i was going to say.
Anonymous said…
Glad to have you back, row 14.
Laura/PFG said…
ooh! i remember!!

i was going to say... SkyMall...so....addicted.

except my good sense (wha?) gets the better of me and i don't actually PURCHASE any of the items, but there's a ton of crappe in there i'd buy if i were so wealthily inclined.

also? i think her middle name is Eve.
Anonymous said…
Chere serenissima say la vee:

I second Madame Badger's welcome home!

I felt a pang of empathy with your complaint regarding long-haired female passengers seated in front of one who will insist upon administering to their coiffures at the most inopportune times - or, worse, constantly.

Though I sense that you are far too kind to try such a thing, may I suggest that this situation provides the opportunity to put to good use the tray table kindly provided by the airline?

Snapping it to its upright and locked position at just the right moment teaches the offender a valuable life lesson regarding consideration of others' personal space and, provided that you are able to feign authentically the requisite degree of shock and dismay, provides you with no little degree of well deserved amusement.

Kindest regards,
A fan of your, Madame Badger's, La Poppissima's, and Sir Joke's wonderful blogs.
Defunct Lisa said…
just in case people get concerned, that mist stuff is actually the result of the airplane A/C on when you have the doors open and are plugged in at a humid airport.
--erica said…
blackbird and family home.
all seems right with the world today. :)
Anonymous said…
Glad you're back. This post was amazing. I really felt like i was there with you.

Happy laundry.
blackbird said…
well aren't you all just the nicest bunch?!

Laura/pfg - I tried Eve, she said no.

Raed - what kind words...and what a brilliant idea, NOTED.

Lisa - we are pretty sure the mist is designed to fade our tans.
Sarah Louise said…
Good luck with the laundry! And I loved loved loved that last picture.

Glad you're back in Tuvalu.

Evanescence? Although that is sort of long for a middle name and I don't know anyone else with that as a middle name. I feel like we're playing a game of Rumplestiltskin!

Loved the Ad for Row 14 and Middle pretending to be the pilot.
Caro said…
Middle child sounds funny.

I like "row 14 -we hack up a lung for you." LMAO
Lynne@Oberon said…
Hee hee .. pilots must have a special lesson at flying school for how to speak like a pilots during important announcements ... cause they all ummm and aaaah their way through it.

Glad you got home safely. The holiday will seem more wonderous now you are home to your everyday life :)
Suse said…
I'm still gobsmacked that you took 14 pieces of luggage away for a week's holiday.

(Welcome back).
blackbird said…
but really?

three guitars, in cases
one duffel of beach gear
one box of surf boards
five carry ons of books and mags and ipods
so. really that's only four suitcases for nine days for five people...
First, thank you for the lovely sentiment you left on my blog. I love meeting new readers!

I'm not sure where exactly you went, but it looked beautiful. I find comfort in returning to places I've been before. I scrolled through some other posts and the pictures looked lovely!

Yes we watch Mythbusters too. I'd sit through a marathon if they played one.

And finally, I laughed over the metric ton of laundry. Sigh. Our work is never ending. I have a ton always. Whether it's dirty, wet, dry, waiting to be put away. Always there in some form!


Mom of Sweetie
kt said…
Laundry is the hefty price we pay for travel. Forget taking off your shoes and machines that blow air into your clothes, forget miniature food, forget family members ailing.

Laundry is the hairshirt we don upon arriving home.


Glad you're back, sorry it wasn't quite as planned, but we enjoyed what we could in a vicarious and supportive manner.

And why doesn't raed have a blog? I want to know more of her diabolical plots..sounds like my kinda gal!
BabelBabe said…
Welcome home. You were missed.


Do you actually KNOW this name by now or are we guesing into the void?

Yet more reasons I DESPISE flying. In addition to my pathological habit of believing that I can single-handedly keep the plane in the air if I concentrate hard enough.