Today’s guest blog entry is a cross-post from Chris Dean, an NYC Dads Group member & talented blogger of English Dad in New York. This entertaining (is it sad or considered inappropriate if I had a chuckle at his expense?) & visual piece incorporates the feelings of a stay at home dad going back to work and traveling with a young child. They were stuck in Miami for nearly 4 days because of the NYC blizzard during the Christmas Holiday. Fortunately, Chris has agreed to contribute monthly to the content of this blog. We are very grateful! On a snowy day like today, I am sure some parents can relate as well as empathize with this story…
This morning as I said goodbye to Max, I could hardly look him in the eye. It was my first day at my new job and Max knew that something was off kilter. Namely, that I was wearing clothes before his morning nap. It was gut-wrenching to leave him, especially after the night we had just endured. Well actually, there was barely a night to speak of given that we got home at 3am.
In my trademark big hair and no pants pre-nap attire
Yesterday’s flight, which had already been delayed several days, was laughably bad. To quote a friend and fellow parent of a toddler: “if you resign yourself to the fact that your journey will be a f***ing nightmare, you’ll be fine”.
It started fine enough. He was in a characteristically jovial mood during check-in but the vomiting started shortly after in the security line. The problem, for me at least, was that I was carrying him in the backpack. When the security guy asked “Sir, what’s that on your face and hair?”, I replied “Oh, that’ll be puked-up banana with a hint of bile”. Fortunately, it was just under the maximum liquid allowance.
No overweight charges
And the fact that the flight left only an hour late was irrelevant considering we had already waited 72 hours to board the plane. What proved more relevant was the fact that we only brought one change of clothes for Max and no change at all for us. No points for guessing what happened next.
The poor little chap must have thrown up at least five times throughout the flight. In ESPN speak, he completed an average of 1.25 pukes a quarter. The devastating thing was that after each completion he would frantically sign for more food with his hands. And then release.
After changing him into his emergency outfit following his first major bout, we had to get pretty creative thereafter. After commandeering one of the toilets, and making clever use of the complimentary blankets and “please give it back” air freshener, we somehow muddled through. It’s funny, before becoming a parent I was almost phobic about vomit. Now, I wear it as face paint.
So we arrived at JFK utterly knackered, swimming in regurgitated airport food but oddly triumphant. We deplaned and dewalked to baggage claim where we dewaited over an hour to get our debloody luggage. To celebrate, Max threw up over himself.
Max was as stunned as anyone when a bag finally appeared on the carousel
To cap off a beautiful night, we waited for well over an hour at the taxi stand while a lady competing for the title of “World’s most incompetent taxi attendant” produced a memorable performance. Had I not been a) holding a sleeping baby and b) English, I would have lost my rag, staged a mutiny and jumped the fence (with Max) to claim our cab.
The cab pulled up outside our apartment dangerously close to 3am. And even though we had all smelled better in our lives, we headed straight for bed. I suppose there was one conciliation for our never-ending journey- my last day as a stay at home dad was a long and eventful one.