In My Mind There Is No Snow ... Or Memories of Vacations Past

>> Wednesday, February 17, 2010

All this snowfall here in Virginia is getting rather nuts. At the time of my writing, we are 35 inches under and counting and with yet ANOTHER storm on the horizon. I don't care what the media tells you about any 17 crappy inches for the big January storm. They took that measurement at the airport, right next to the river, in congested "city" area. (Technically it isn't in the DC limit, but that is a mere technicality for this discussion.) Trust me, that snow total is really wrong for most of the area.

Anyway, all this snow is making me think rather nostalgically for vacations past ... those trips where we were so warm a little bit of snow would have been a relief. The whole thing sounds so wonderful now that I'm living in dream land. In my mind, there is sunshine, tropical breezes, and no snow drifting over my fence and burying my car.

Then, of course, being me, I find myself remembering how it felt to try to get sand "discretely" out of my bathing suit when it was sitting ... well, you know. Or that really scary toilet room on the train in Spain or the hole in the ground they called a toilet in the French train station (both of which made me think longlingly of airplane bathrooms). I never thought there was ever going to be an experience that made me go to McDonalds because I knew it was the cleanest bathroom around. I could choose to think about the day my roommate yacked into a garbage can in Spain or the day everyone thought I was lost in Australia (I knew where I was).

Today I am finding myself thinking of Las Vegas. I'm the kind of person who likes going to Las Vegas in August, when one minute outside can dehydrate a body for a week. I like that time of year because no one else does, and I don't have to suffer through nasty crowds. So, one day, in a brilliant fit of inspiration, I traveled (with a lot of company) across the country to Las Vegas with a baby that had a trach and was tube fed.

After that, nothing has ever seemed quite so difficult.

Don't get me wrong -- we had an awful lot of fun. In fact, Toddler (who was then "Baby") wrote his own little travel journal for us. He was about 8 months old and he thought everything was rather interesting. I've posted Day 1 of his travel journal below for your amusement. There are a lot of references to medical equipment in Toddler (Baby's) journal, but hey ... it's his journal and not mine. I made a point to not mention medical stuff, not him. I hope you will see that he has a great attitude about it, and he has a rather comical viewpoint ... if I do say so myself.

Baby’s travel Journal, Day 1: Saturday (transcribed on this the following Thursday).

Mom and Dad got me up REALLY early on Saturday. It seems like the very first time that I got up AFTER Mom and Dad. Trust me. I think part of my job in this family is to make sure we all get up in plenty of time for breakfast and early morning shows on Playhouse Disney.

I guess my parents must have been super tired from getting up so early, because they forgot to change me out of my PJs. I have to admit, I was a little bit anxious about the PJ thing, because the last time we got up at o'-dark-thirty and went to the car without changing clothes we ended up at the hospital, and it HURT. I had a quick sigh of relief this time, though, when Dad turned the car the other direction ... far away from the hospital. This time, we headed to someplace called the "airport."

If I had to guess, I think Daddy has some bad associations with going out in PJs, too, because he was pretty anxious himself. (I guess I should take a moment to mention that Mom and Dad were not in their PJs. Neither was Grandma or the friend who was going with us. Just me. I'm not sure I made that altogether clear. Mom kept saying something about Daddy having "airport issues" but I didn't really understand what all that meant, considering I had never even heard of an "airport" before today. Either way, Mom and Dad seemed a bit anxious about what was going to happen to all those bags we were taking with us. I'm not sure what was the concern. After all, we only had ... I don't know ... about 15 or so. For us with all my junk, that's travelling light. We already had rented the really important stuff like an exersaucer and a stroller and a crib at where we were going, so we didn't have to take that stuff with us. Anyway, Dad showed the nice lady at the counter some letter, and she said there was no problem, so Daddy and Mommy wasted all that energy worrying about nothing. (Just wait, guys. Just wait.)

Next we had to walk through some funny place where they took my carseat and Daddy had to carry me, and they asked a lot of questions about my suction machine. I thought I was going to get to go with Daddy through one of those cool glass tunnels with the wizard wands ... or maybe even the big dogs. After all, Daddy was breathing awful fast and looked mighty suspicious to me, but I guess they thought it was all the stuff he was carrying. They did take Grandma away for awhile to look at something with her metal knees, but they didn't take Mom away and ask her about her metal spine, so Daddy was relieved. If they had taken Mom away, Dad would have had to figure out how to hold me, strap the carseat back on the luggage cart, and put on his shoes all at the same time, while standing up, and without being knocked over by people all around him doing the same thing.

In the airport, I finished my tube feed, then quickly threw up. I wanted to tell Dad the whole way through the airport that he shouldn't be worried about all this lining up and talking stuff, because something bigger was coming. (And I do mean big.) Grandma said something like, "Lord, this stuff smells worse coming out than it does going in!" Aw, Grandma, you'll get used to it. I do this 3 or 4 times a day.

We got to board the airplane first. They weren't going to let us, because airlines often don't care too much about helping out families with small children these days. Daddy said something about sticking his butt out into the aisle and refusing to take it back in until he car seat was stabilized and all the medical quipment was stored. Suddenly, everyone was rolling out red carpets for us. On the airplane I slept and refused to eat and generally acted like my good sweet self. Mom had me out of the chair for awhile, and you wouldn't believe how many people were on the plane -- more people than I think I've ever seen before. (Mom and Dad don't let me out much, and I thought there really were only 20 people in the world.)

The ride was fun, but it was NOTHING compared to the airport where we landed. I've never SEEN such colors and people and signs and there were these SOUNDS. I couldn't figure out where to look first. Look at that, Dad! Look here! What's that? WOW! What's that glowing thing going clink, clink, clink, clink, clink? Can I try it?

Mom and our friend got our bags, then Dad and our friend got the van and came back to pick up Mom, me and Grandma. Mom said I was HEAVY because Dad took the carseat with him and took forever to come back. But, I wore my cool sunglasses, and everyone smiled at me. I don't have a picture of that day, but here is what my cool sunglasses look like. (I almost never wore them, because I was more interested in yanking on them, so good pictures are few and far between.)

In My Mind There Is No Snow ... Or Memories of Vacations Past

Things got a little rougher at our hotel that night. We got the not-available-in-any-store formula delivered to Mom's friend just fine. Mom says anything that smells that bad shouldn't bother to be so expensive, and Grandma made more jokes about whether there would be enough after we did the obligatory spillage and puke-uppage. Grandma doesn't pull any punches on the "gross" ya know?

Anyway, after we picked up diapers and all the other stuff that I use, we tried to go out to dinner, even though I was sooooo tired and no one bothered to ask me if I wanted to go. (Notice that I said, "tried" to go out to dinner.) ,We tried to go to Mom and Dad's favorite mexican restaurant in the Luxor, but it closed two weeks ago. (And what's a Sphinx, anyway?) While we kept walking around and around this sloped building that seemed to be more than half under construction (what's "renovation," by the way?) I kept seeing all those flashing lights again. There were so many COLORS -- once again, I hardly knew where to look. But I was so TIRED. I would sleep for five minutes, but then I'd wake up to look around. After Mom and Dad talked to some dude with an unpronounceable title that like "concert barge", Mom and Dad and Grandma and our friend took me to someplace called the Miracle Mile at Planet Hollywood where there was another mexican place. (Again, they didn't ask me.)

This place served the fastest food you'd ever want to see. We barely sat down before they were putting plates of food in front of my family. I guess they could tell just from looking at them that this was not a family to mess with or something. Once again, I fooled around with my food and wouldn't eat, but I had so much fun looking around.

By the time we got home to the hotel, it was well after midnight, I know. Strangely enough, Mom kept saying it was only 9PM. I just know she was wrong about that. By the time we got there, I was so wired that I refused to sleep and told Mom I was NOT going to go to slezzzzzzzzzzzzz. (5 seconds flat)

But, the night was pretty bad. I had a lot of coughing spells and my O2 monitor was going nuts (as usual), so Mom and Dad were up most of the night with nebulizers and holding me and just watching the monitor insist that my O2 levels were only 85. (But when we reset the monitor, it would say 97 for a few seconds, like magic, it just wouldn't stay that way.) Mom and Dad knew I was okay, because this sort of nonsense (as they call it) happens all the time, but they also said something about "who can sleep with all this beeping going on?" I didn't have any problems ... except for the times Mom and Dad moved me to be sure I was really okay. That was pretty darn annoying.

Despite what seemed like a short night, I tried to get up when my tummy said "breakfast" but it was still dark, and I was still tired. It was confusing, but Mom came over and said, "Go back to sleep; it isn't morning yet." So I did, and that was the end of my first day of vacation.


Stay tuned for more of Baby's travel journal, including some pictures with space aliens.


  © Free Blogger Templates Skyblue by 2008

Back to TOP