Sunday, December 13, 2009

12/10/09: Annelies Goes International

The big day began with a telephone call to tell me we had an emergency with the system at work (I must say, neither of my kids kept or woke me up as much as this 'newborn' system we migrated 2 months ago, LOL. Thankfully I get PAID to deal with this system). There have been too many of these early mornings in the past month, but because we were getting ready to skip the country I had enough energy to deal with what I could before handing it off to my co-workers so I could finish up packing and bring Marco to school.
It was difficult to say goodbye to Marco. He cried a little (he usually does now, the school is still so new for him), which made it even harder. Marco is in good hands while I am gone, getting some quality Daddy-time, and the rest of the time will be with Oma or at school.
I was still packing when Leif arrived to take us to the airport. It was a nice drive to the airport, all the work-worries kind of dropped away and I felt so good getting away from it all and just not thinking about it anymore.
Check-in went quickly, I was in the line for families going through security so I had help from others (it is a bit of manouvering with a child and a stroller by yourself, but not impossible). When we boarded I kind of had a small feeling of "ohmygod, how are we going to survive the next 10 hours? Cheapass Dutch person I am, of course I did not get a seat for Annelies. She was going to be in my lap the whole flight (or on the floor or whatever I could pull together. If I can get something for free, by god, I will. So proud of my roots!!! I was thinking: will Annelies behave or will she be loud and abnoxious? Will I regret not shelling out that additional 800 bucks for another seat (Shit, that IS a lot of money), but that fear was alleviated quickly because there were a lot of kids around us who were louder than she normally tends to be (Yes, that is saying a lot because Annelies, like the Vlaming side of the family, has a good set of pipes and does not shy away from using them).
Takeoff was smooth, I had a bottle for her and she kind of fell asleep as she was drinking. One of the flight attendants came and brought us a crib for her that I was able to put in front of my feet. A word about the service on KLM when you travel with a baby: EXCELLENT. I was impressed and immediately put at ease. The aforementioned steward came and checked on us 4 times during the flight to ensure we were OK. I also sat next to a Mom who had a 5 month old who travels back and forth quite often (she is Dutch, lives in Oakland with her Husband who is from India whom she met when he was doing an MBA in NL). We talked and had a nice time.
Annelies woke up around 3 hours into the flight and was up for about 2 hours. I fed and played with her, then put her back in bed to let her fall asleep which she did. It was awesome. I had a little TV screen where I watched about 4 episodes of the Office and 2 whole movies with no interruption. I was in heaven. Any mother is going to understand me, no kids and no work, no phone just me and a pretty comfy seat (I had the wall in front of me so put up my feet) and my own little TV. That is how I got through the 10 hour flight very quickly. (Almost too quickly, LOL).
Right before we started to land, Annelies woke up (they had opened the little window covers and turned the lights back on) and I repeated the routine from takeoff with a bottle of milk for her, it went beautifully, no crying, no fuss. She is such a trooper!
I will post pics as soon as I can figure out how to load them to my account...