Well we made it, safe and sound, to rainy warm Nova Scotia yesterday, with a minimum of travel snafus and a maximum of tiredness.
Travelling relatively cheaply at this time of year meant travelling with Air Canada. I loathe Air Canada. Always have. And, true to form, they did not disappoint, as their online check in system went knockers up for us on the day before we travelled, and we were unable to do our virtual check in and book our seats. That meant we had to do it at Pearson before our flight, where we met an attendant at the check in counter who was virtually charm-free and who spent a good 15 minutes trying to check us in before telling us that she could not give us 3 seats together on the first leg to Montreal, and that Stinkerbelle would be sitting alone. In an exit row.
She also sent us to the wrong gate, which meant sherpa-ing our gear and child through the airport only to turn around and come back again to a gate we passed on the way. Okay, fine, whatever.
At the gate, we finally got our seats somewhat squared away, sitting 2 and 1. Fine. Better than the alternative.
We did not, however, count on the kindness of the people we were travelling with, who were pleasant and kind and switched seats so we could all be sitting together. Or, playing peek-a-boo with Stinkerbelle over the seat back to keep her amused while she was confined to her seat. It was unusual, having other travellers who were pleasant and accomodating and kind to people travelling with children. We had a whole planeload full of them.
Once in Montreal, it was a quick changeup, and we were on our flight to Halifax. Stinkerbelle was a trooper, given that we’d all gotten up early to get on the road by 7 that morning, but sitting in de-icing at Montreal she started to get impatient and fidgety. It had been a long, exciting day so far for her, and she was as pleasant as could be until then, but it was catching up with her. But we took off, and by the time we had levelled off, she was asleep in her seat. BONUS. So we flew, quietly and comfortably, while she napped.
And then we began our descent.
Stinkerbelle woke up, not happy and still tired. The changing altitude was bugging her — either her sinuses or her ears were hurting. She began to cry, real big tears, and wail. I cuddled her, her face pressed hard against mine, which seemed to be the only way to comfort her, until a flight attendant came by and said I absolutely had to put her in her seat (she was very kind and waited until the very last minute, so for that I am grateful). I put That Baby in her seat, and she wailed and cried for the last 10 minutes or so.
But once down, she began to feel better, and we were off through the airport to meet Grammy and Grandad. And then home, to family and a change of clothes and OMG SEAFOOD CHOWDER.
And, having slept only 3 or 4 hours the night before, we were in bed by 8:30 or so and slept hard the whole night through.
So, home for the holidays — we are it. We have shopping (well, BDH does) and wrapping and visiting and much, much eating to come. I myself plan on drinking as much coffee and Baileys as is humanly possible.
But first, it’s time to go get That Baby up and ready to face the day. She’s delighted to be home with Grammy and Grandad, so there lies a day of bossing and shouting and singing and dancing and pointing and playing ahead of us. It’s a full day.