Travelling with kids

We survived the journey home. Now back to work.

We’re back and we survived! I don’t like flying at the best of times. You could call me a nervous traveller. I have to wear the exact same clothes to fly out as to fly back. I also have to be reading on landing and taking off. This is quite difficult to accomplish when seated next to very active children. Both on the way out and on the way back our plane had a "technical problem". I don’t like to hear the words "technical problem" uttered in relation to planes I am about to board. On top of that, there was, of course, the al Qaeda attempted attack and apparently ETA were supposed to be threatening some sort of campaign. We travelled on New Year’s Day – a symbolic day to bring down a plane…You see the way my mind works. It does not exactly look on plane flying in the most optimistic light.
Added to that, we all felt a little rough. I was unable to get out of bed till lunch and couldn’t eat. I was mustering the energy for the flight. My partner was coming down with the cold. Big girl daughter still had sore ears and the other two were sniffling.
We got out at the wrong part of the airport and had to walk for quite a way with all the cases to the small corner which houses Easy Jet. We then had to go through security. Rebel daughter was grumbling as she takes about an hour to get her new shoes on. Big girl daughter had been studying the security procedure and walked through the security gate, threw her arms in the air and stood with her feet apart, ready to be body searched. Bonkers daughter was, naturally, wearing a Mrs Santa dress, accompanied by a hoola hoola necklace tied as a belt, spotted tights and various hairbands. Having got through security, we had to walk all the way back to where we had originally been dropped off.
The airport was spooky and dark apart from one chain of cafes. It was only serving sandwiches, despite a menu of tempting hot food. None of the sandwiches said what was in them and the poor man on duty didn’t seem too sure. He was being accosted by various ill-tempered passengers who had hoped for some hot food [it was dinner time]. The departures board announced our flight was delayed for a couple of hours. This was better than the Newcastle flight which had a five-hour delay. I recounted a past adventure sleeping all night at Barcelona airport on a marble bench [not recommended].

We found a small play area and the flight was announced. Speedy boarding and priority passengers went through first. When I say through, they went from one side of the gate to the other, ie 10 yards. They then queued up for around 15 minutes until the plane was actually ready. Why do airlines do this? Is it to make you feel you are making some sort of progress? Do they not understand that it just pisses people off more?
On the flight, the captain announced that the air in England was very clear, adding brightly that it was minus four degrees. Hurray. We knew we shouldn’t have left the de-icer at home. The trolley had run out of any food except snack packs by the time it got to us. The stewardesses looked very apologetic. Luckily, they had hot chocolate. Who needs food when you’ve got hot chocolate? We arrived around midnight. The car had frozen solid in the mid-stay car park, both on the inside and outside. We finally got to bed around 1.30am. Next year, we will be doing the same trip with one extra child. Can’t wait.

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