We said goodbye to England last Saturday and boarded our flight to India. England treated us well, but it was time for a new adventure in my home country now. Had to spend Diwali in Delhi too- aah the joys of being home, the yummy food and the awful haze.
But I digress. This post is not about India or Delhi or England. This post is about my experience on the longest air journey I have taken so far in my life, in terms of the time of travel. And it isn’t a happy or positive post about tips on how-to-have-a-successful-flight-journey-with-toddler. No, it isn’t about that. This post will have some happy pictures, the ones you take for Instagram, right after a fight or a harrowing ordeal, and it is about the story that happened right before or after the picture was taken.
If you’re a parent, or a traveler, and have had awful commuting experiences and always wonder how to people or families with those amazing pictures make it happen, then this post is you for. It says, you are not alone in your ordeals. LOL 😀
Scene 1: After a week of packing and giving away our belongings, we had these many bags. See that little kid standing between those bags with an amicable smile? That picture was taken right when I thought that was so adorable, and right before she demanded that we open all the bags and take her big teddy out. I WANT BIG TEDDYYYYYY!!! WAAAAAAHHHH! #Very-Loud-Crying-Moment #Mom-Dad-Lying-Through-Their-Teeth-Moment to pacify toddler.
Scene 2: Thank God for London Heathrow airport. They had all these pretty Christmas trees set up in mood for the up-coming Christmas. They did help my daughter brighten up after she was asked to hand over her bottle of milk, her ‘hoppity’ and was told off sternly by mom to stand and be quiet while mommy takes her laptop, kindle, phone, etc etc out, at the security check. (I know security checks are crucial, but sometimes I do wonder if it was created solely for the purpose of torturing parents). Right after this picture was taken, she turned around and hugged the ‘tree’, saying, “I love you tee! I will miss you. I don’t want to leave you teeee!” Followed by lots of whining when I dragged her away from it.
Scene 3: This picture was taken right after my daughter had cried her lungs out because she was hungry, and we were just trying to get a place to keep our cabin luggage and get some food out for her. She devoured a banana, half a ham sandwich, some peanuts and had some water. She also watched a lot of Hey Duggee on the iPad. Those are happy smiles of a fed toddler and a mom who desperately needed coffee and got some 😀
Scene 4: First flight. Emirates. Huge flight, even the economy seats were so spacious! Traveling from London to Dubai. Flight hours- 6.5 hours in the night. That picture was taken right when we got our seats. My daughter is always excited to get into the airplane, get her seat and then buckle up her seat belt herself. Then we wait. Then she gets restless. Then it goes downhill. We had 6.5 hours to sleep. I think my husband and I managed 3-4 hours of sleep. My daughter probably slept for 5 hours. If you are a parent, you know that 5 hours of sleep in the night, is not enough for a child. That will also set the tone of the rest of the journey. Because although my daughter is very well mannered and good natured, she needs her sleep, in her bed, and her kind of food at proper intervals in order to be sane. She doesn’t get any of that hereon. She isn’t sane hereon.
Scene 5: Flight number two. Traveling from Dubai to Mumbai. Flight time: 2.5 hours. Halt in between of 2.5 hours in Dubai airport. My gosh, Dubai airport was huge! We didn’t get time to even freshen up, because it took us forever to transfer from one terminal to the other- even with the help of elevators and inter terminal trains! My daughter hadn’t eaten anything since last night. She had been surviving only on milk, thank God for all the cows giving us milk (sorry vegans). We made it to the flight, but all three of us were in a mood before that picture was taken. My husband was annoyed because he was trying to make it to the gate on time and we were slowing him down. I was annoyed because he was being too fast and inconsiderate because I had the freaking toddler who wanted to walk, very…. slowly. And my toddler was annoyed, well because. I also wanted to brush and take a dump and have a coffee. I didn’t have time to do either of those until we boarded the flight. Once the plane took off, all of us fell asleep promptly.
Scene 6: Mumbai domestic airport. Next and final journey- Mumbai to Delhi. You must be wondering why did we take this roundabout way to Delhi from London? Don’t wonder. Let’s just attribute it to corporate policies, personal desires and financial constraints. I’d have flown a private jet if I could afford it. Just saying. So this picture was taken after we finished immigration, customs, international to domestic transfer, waiting in the never-ending queue to get our boarding passes at the domestic airport while carrying toddler and all the tons of suitcases, and the security check with separate male and female queues at the Mumbai domestic airport. Also, I have to mention that my daughter had strange demands throughout. She shouted “LAND AHOOOOYYY”, for some reason, in places where it was the quietest, didn’t want to get her nappy changed, wasn’t sure if she wanted to sit on the pram or not, and lay down on the floor to show how upset she was with me because I didn’t let her sit on the expensive ‘show cars’ that were on display in the airport. Also, she didn’t eat a morsel of anything we ordered at Mumbai airport. I’m worried about her diet here. In hindsight, it all seems really funny now.
Scene 7: The last and final flight. Whew. See how I planned this whole blog in advance and made my family pose with me? Lol. I might have some sadistic traits somewhere, if I had planned a blog already to mock my miserable journey. Ahem. The last flight was AirIndia. From Mumbai to Delhi. It was delayed by 1.5 hours. Arrrgghhhh! We were supposed to take off from Mumbai at 6 pm, but we took off at 7:45 pm. My toddler and husband slept through this flight too. I couldn’t sleep at all. I was really mad at myself for not being able to sleep, because I really wanted to sleep too! This journey was followed by a long wait at Delhi airport to collect our luggage, and a very welcoming onslaught of the worst haze when we exit the airport.
But we made it! We kind of survived!
Total journey hours: 24 hours.
Total number of flights taken: 3
Total number of airports seen: 4
We were all annoyed, and tired and jet lagged. It is Tuesday here in Delhi, and I am still tired and jet lagged. Not that annoyed anymore. My daughter is still not eating much. I wonder how long it will take to just get back into the rhythm or things? Oh, I forgot. We are here in Delhi just for a week. We have another flight to take to Pune, on Saturday. Then we stay in a hotel until we find a house to move into. Aaah, the joys of moving.
Please tell me I’m not alone in this experience 🙂 Have you (not) survived a flight or rail or bus or similar journey, that just never seemed to end? Tell me all about it..maybe we could write a book about harrowing journeys! haha