Thursday, April 22, 2010

My little traveler

Elle is the best traveler ever. I rarely use superlatives, but in this case...she really is the best. She ate and pooped before we left for the airport on our way out. She took a nice nap in the car and then we loaded up her Chicco travel system and took her into the airport. I strapped a large backpacker type back pack to my back with all of our stuff. It was both of our "carry on" luggage. I also carried her diaper bag as her "personal item".

Going through security was by far the worst part of the trip. I had an infant, a car seat, a stroller, a small diaper bag and a large back pack to put through the x-ray machine. I had all Elle's liquids and gels in a small bag and all mine in another small bag. All TSA approved. First I put our liquids and shoes in a TSA bin, then I threw our packs on the conveyor also. Then I removed my baby girl from the stroller system car seat and put her on my hip. I popped out the car seat and set it on the conveyor belt with her blankie, one toy and one bib inside. These were the "critical items" for our trip...the little things that make my girl happy. The only time the TSA agent noticed what I was doing was to TURN OVER her car seat...dumping her three critical items on the belt. I jumped into the x-ray and grabbed her stuff and placed it an another bin. I told the agent that the stroller did not look like it would fit and two agents said... "you have to try". Ok. Then I folded her stroller and hefted it onto the belt. No one seemed to want to help me with that. I then asked why they turned over the car seat and the agent said, "because". Ok Mama, keep movin'.

The stroller did not fit, big surprise. So the agent told me to take it off the belt (note, infant still on my hip) and hand it to another agent. I did. That agent walked away. Ok. I went and stood at the end of the conveyor belt waiting for our stroller so I could re load our belongings. I waited. And waited. And our stuff was in a big pile and the other travelers were not pleased with me. I politely apologized to all the people who were behind me, but I had nowhere to go.

The agent handed me back my stroller and asked me why I bought my kid a ticket. I said, "because". She told me it was a waste of money. I thought to myself (using all my internal restraint to not THINK OUTLOUD), "my kid, my money, my ticket". I then went on my way. Elle flashing her best movie star smiles at everyone in our path.

Elle loves people. She thinks everyone is here to see her. She is mostly right. She fussed for about five minutes during taxi, so I lifted her up above my head so she could smile at her audience...she loved that. She spent most of take off trying to climb over me so she could smile and WINK at the rest of the passengers.

I have to thank one gate check agent in New Orleans. I did not get his name, but he was the only person on the entire trip that helped us. He took our stroller and gate checked it for me. Saving me the stress and embarrassment of having to bend over and flash my fat can in-front of the entire boarding plane while I fold the stroller and gate check tag it. He was really nice to us and his two minutes of help made my day.


  1. It's amazing how utterly rude people can be these days. Child on hip=could use a little help!! It's ridiculous. At least you had one agent that helped you. :) And thankfully Elle was entertaining enough to be a great buffer. :)

  2. Also a good thing: I don't swear in front of my kid...because if I do I would be in TSA jail somewhere for cursing out the agents!