Wednesday, April 14, 2010

international attire

Back in October, I dared try to have a long weekend with an old girlfriend of mine I hadn't seen in too long. Like a real live, off on my own, took a plane to get here, vacation. I felt awful the whole flight there and once I was snug in our hotel room, I proceeded to get violently ill and stay that way for most of our trip. This is where the “old friend” part comes in handy because I'm reasonably certain that she's still speaking to me. We can just chalk it up to another “remember that time when...”

On the way home – prior to the experience of coming within a hair of being bumped off the plane I had reserved months in advance because, well, I still don't know why really, they mumbled something about change of aircraft and wanting to screw over their paying customers, I think – I endured the wrath of the TSA agents. Okay, I'm lying, they were actually very pleasant; we just had a difference of opinion. Whereas I thought that the kitschy, yet age-appropriate snowglobe I'd purchased for my son as a gift posed no threat to our fine homeland, they thought the 2 ounces of water within it created a security risk.

And so I had a choice. (Have you noticed that whenever anyone states that you have a choice it means you don't really have a choice?) I could either throw it away, or dump out the water. I envision these same people saying things like, “You can either set the teddy bear on fire, or slice him open and tear out all the stuffing,” then smiling like the Grinch.

Fine. I'll dump the water. One problem. Couldn't get the rubber stopper out. After all, trashy tourist gift or not, the water is meant to stay IN the snowglobe. One of the kind TSA agents tried to help. When he couldn't get it open with his fingers he attempted it by using the dental pick he had in his pocket. (Apparently a drop of water in a toy is a problem, but not a red flag on hygiene issues.) No luck. Another agent came to see what all the fuss was about. He tried too. Nope. At one point, I had three TSA agents trying to release the water from my kid's snowglobe. People could have been smuggling palettes of dynamic by us, but by god! those agents were dedicated to their snowglobe detail. Finally, one of them managed to open the plug and there it all went in the trash, glitter escaping with the water.

At home, it was interesting to try to explain to Isaac why the people at the airport wanted to drain his globe. Nonetheless, we headed to the craft store to pick out some new glitter. We filled it with green and orange sparkly glitter that made it look a bit like an acid rain nightmare but pleased my son to no end. We then added that dastardly water and replugged. A gleeful Isaac carried it across the kitchen to dry it at which point it slipped out of the towel, fell to the tile and broke.

Which just goes to show...I have no moral to the story. None. It's pretty much like most every story I've encountered that begins and/or ends with the airlines. It reminds me of that Lewis Black routine about Starbucks which I quote often: “It's expensive, but at least the lines are long!”

In our recent dealings with the airlines I have had long heart-felt conversations with supervisors at multiple companies' 1-800 lines about things like seats. It's this crazy idea I have that I'd prefer to sit with my family on our trans-continental/trans-Atlantic flight. (Though to be honest, the last time I was separated from my boys I read a whole book cover to cover! A whole book! On the plane! When I informed the man next to me as we landed of this fact, he was not impressed, as I'm sure, dear readers, you, being empathetic, vibrant people must certainly be. Why are we so rarely placed next to empathetic, vibrant people when dangling 35,000 feet above the planet when they'd likely come in handy?)

So, we're going to Ireland. (Don't except bloggedy blogs for a bit.)

Now there are many reasons to want to go to Ireland and we've collected several of them, and we're going. There you have it.

As some of you may know, my favorite color is orange. I am the woman who, when glancing around her living room plotting decorations for Halloween, simply threw up her hands, since there was nothing she could really do that would alter the normal color scheme.

Some of you may also know, that there is a thing about orange in Ireland. Something to do with William of Orange (a Protestant) defeating King James (a Catholic) in the Battle of the Boyne 320 years ago. 3-2-0. We'll see if they let me squeak by. Cuz the countdown is on for this not-so-little adventure and once I am again on the ground and free of airline insanity, I don't need one more thing.
I'll leave you with this from Isaac, learning about subtraction:

K: So what's 10 minus 1?
I: 9
K: What's 9 minus 1?
I: 8
K: 8 minus 1?
I: 7
K: 7 minus 1?
I: 9...No! Um, 6?
K: Yeah, we're still working on that circle on the top, circle on the bottom thing, huh? Okay, 6 minus 1?
I: 5
K: 5 minus 1?
I: 4
K: 4 minus 1?
I: 3
K: 3 minus 1?
I: 2
K: 2 minus 1?
I: 1
K: 1 minus 1
I: Blast Off!!

Bon Voyage to us. See you all in a couple weeks.


bobbie said...

Have a wonderful trip! And safe home, darling! Blast off!

Anonymous said...

the snow globe thing reminds me of roseanne roseannadanna. "Well, Jane, it just goes to show you, it's always something! If it's not one thing, it's another! Either you don't know how to breastfeed your baby, or Bo Derek makes you sick at Tiffany's." either your snow globe is confiscated as an instrument of terrorism, or your small child smashes it later.

have a great trip. that's the news, good night and have a pleasant tomorrow.

Christine Gram said...

Blast off! Have a great time!

Dianne said...

I'm assuming you're still stuck here thanks to ash clouds, hope you guys are making the most of it :)

safe home or onward whenever it happens

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