Friday, September 5, 2008

How we turned a 12 hour trip into a 30 hour trip! September 4, 2008

Oh, the joys of traveling with a 2 year old! This is my first post since we've been here in CA. It's been all unpacking for us these days. But I couldn't NOT tell you about our trip out here...maybe the very worst traveling experience I've ever had. I would have never made it if it hadn't been for my mom. She's amazing.

The plan was to drive to Charlotte, fly to Atlanta, fly to San Jose, and drive to our apartment only 5 miles away. Simple enough, right? We all knew it was going to be a long day, but we never anticipated how long!

Everything was going just as planned as we arrived at our gate in Charlotte. Caedmon did great going through security and was playing so sweetly right up to the point it was time to board. That's when the delays started. Not sure if you saw this on the news, but last Tuesday (the day we were traveling) the FAA's computer system in Atlanta crashed so they had to manually enter about 3,000 flights! That meant Atlanta was completely gridlocked. Hardly anything was getting into or out of Atlanta. So we waited, and waited, and Caedmon started melting down, and we waited some more. We finally boarded the plane 2 hours after our scheduled time of departure, and then sat on the runway for 2 more hours! By the time we got to Atlanta, we had missed all outgoing flights to CA and needed to spend the night in Atlanta.

So you have to picture this in your head. I have a 30 pound duffel bag strapped to my back, I'm pulling the carseat on a roller thing, and I'm carrying 30 pound Caedmon because he's too tired to walk. My mom is also weighted down and we have no idea where we're supposed to go or what we need to do. An airline employee finally tells us to walk "this way" and we will see all the hotel shuttles and they told us which hotel to go to for a discounted rate. So we walk (I'm not exaggerated) somewhere between 1/2 mile and 1 mile winding around the Atlanta airport. My arms are shaking from being so fatigued by carrying Caedmon.

We get to the hotel shuttles and it is absolute chaos. There are people everywhere and there is no organized system for where the shuttles park. There are about 50 parking slots that are first come, first serve so you just have to walk up and down the sidewalk (with all your stuff) looking for the right hotel. I saw our hotel's shuttle driving by, so my mom turned to go chase it down! She tripped over someone's luggage and fell, tore her pants, and skint her knee! I was so relieved that she didn't also break her arm!!!

Here's how the rest of the night unfolded:

10:30p check into hotel, quick bath for Caedmon

11:00p lights out, Caedmon is in bed with me because there's no pack-n-play available

11:45p Caedmon finally stops talking and falls asleep

1:30a phone rings for our wake up call that we DID NOT ask for

3:00a Caedmon falls out of bed

5:00a Caedmon suddenly sits up and jumps on top of me like a WWE wrestler. He clings to my neck like a monkey until he falls back asleep.

7:00a Caedmon is up for good. Quick shower. No need to change clothes or do my hair and makeup because I DON'T HAVE ANYTHING TO DO THAT WITH! So much for looking nice for Andy when he picks us up!

9:00a Back through security...this time with Caedmon laying on the ground kicking his feet.

We finally made it to San Francisco later that day. We were supposed to fly to San Jose, but, whatever, that's close enough. Caedmon slept a total of 8 hours in a time span when he normally would have slept 18 hours! Needless to say, he was on the verge of a meltdown at any moment for the next 3 days. But we made it and things are starting to settle down!

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