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And We Get To Do It Again Next Week

We’ve done it – we’ve successfully navigated our first Holiday Travel Day.  I’m having to start mentally gearing up for the return trip already.

When we went to Wisconsin, Madeleine was three months old.  I was incredibly nervous, but the trip went smoothly thanks to girlfriend tips and the fact that Maddie was pretty young and so amenable to hanging out anywhere as long as we were with her.  Now, at 5 ½ months, she’s got some definite opinions about sitting in one place for too long.  Who knew.

Plus, there’s the fact that this is the busiest travel week of the year.  No half-empty planes for us, no sir.  Packed to the gills, and where once I rolled my eyes at the sight of parents with small children in line for my flight, this time all I could think was, “Oh, thank heavens.  Now if Maddie cries people may think it’s someone else’s baby.”  I’m not saying I’m proud of this thought.

Walking through the airport on a crowded travel day, I felt as if I was seeing the fellow travelers for the first time.  How had I never noticed the harried moms, babies strapped into a carrier, toddlers dragging on their hands?  Why had I not seen the dads, lines of forbearance etched on their faces as the plodded behind the kids, arms piled high with Dora the Explorer travel suitcases and Mickey Mouse backpacks?  I found myself watching these seasoned pros for efficiency tips, but more importantly the question burned on my lips – “What gear are they using to get through today??” 

On my flight alone, we had at least half a dozen families.  One group sat in front of us – a couple, an infant, and a toddler.  Another of the exact same makeup sat across the aisle.  I couldn’t help noticing that the couple in front of us was using a 5-in-1 Sit-N-Stroll System that my girlfriend Sandra had enthusiastically recommended to me.  It looks like a big car seat, but wheels pop out the bottom and a handle comes up from the top and – voila! – you’ve got a stroller.  Sandra loves it because as a New Yorker, she doesn’t need a full-time car seat, so this covers her for cabs and such.  I asked the Mommy in front of me how she liked her, and she enthused about it as a great piece of gear for just such an occasion.  Not the best car seat in the world, but it’s easy to get in and safe.  Not the best stroller in the world – the wheels are a bit dinky – but perfect for pushing through the airport or getting around a family event.  In short, a helpful travel piece. 

As the Mommy and I were talking, the Mommy across the aisle joined in and soon we were sharing stories and tips.  Mommyhood – membership has its privileges.


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