Monday, August 28, 2017

Trip Snippets

Tyler and I have officially moved to Korea! He had to leave about 3 weeks after our daughter was born because of the start of our new contract, but I stayed in Australia for almost a month after he left to finish closing up shop and get the baby her first round of vaccinations before we got on a plane.

Nine months ago, flying to a new continent with a new baby sounded like a challenge, but I didn't think it was impossible. Thankfully, because our baby is so wonderful and calm (I realize we hit the lottery with her), it wasn't impossible and the biggest challenge was wrangling all our luggage and carry-ons while also holding on to an almost two-month-old. But I did it! I am woman, hear me roar.

I have no war story to share here, and there is no shortage of other blogs with tips and tricks for travelling with a baby, but there were funny little snippets of our trip that I want to remember and they're too good not to share.

1. So we get to Sydney for our layover and I have to check in with Asiana Airlines because they are handling the rest of our trip. (Side note: they have a "Happy Mom" check in line so that you don't have to wait in the long line with a kid. Uhh, yes. I was a very happy mom thanks to that!) I hand over our passports and the attendant starts typing away to check us in. After a few minutes she hands me off to her supervisor, who also starts typing away.

After a couple of minutes the supervisor points to the baby and says, "How much is the baby?" She was Korean and clearly didn't have a complete grasp on the English language. It took me a beat to figure out that she was asking how old my daughter was.

"Seven weeks," I say for approximately the fifth time that day. People love babies. I had gotten stopped a lot so strangers could coo at my sweet daughter. I'm not complaining, she's cute as all get out and everyone should bask in her cuteness.

Anyway, the supervisor goes back to typing and eventually looks up and goes, "How did she come to Australia?"

So many responses popped in my head:

"Via the Birth Canal?
"I smuggled her in in my uterus?"
"Well, you see, when two people love each other very much..."

Instead of just said, "She was born here."

Turns out I was supposed to have registered her with immigration so they could grant her a visa, and the supervisor couldn't find record of Bubs in the government system, so she couldn't clear her for legal departure from the country. Oops!

2. Eventually we clear immigration with a warning and a promise on behalf of my daughter to enter the country legally next time and I make my way to security. Let me paint the picture for you:

I'm wearing a 10 pound infant in an ergobaby on the front. I've got a VERY overstuffed backpack on my back. I've got a VERY overstuffed diaper bag, weighted down with my breast pump and all its accouterments, hanging off my right shoulder. I'm carrying her folded up travel bassinet in my left hand, and I stuck a few diapers and a travel changing pad in there before I folded it up.

So with all that, I get to the security line and see there is a 15 minute wait in line and I steel myself for the mommy version of Ninja Warrior when I hear, "With the baby? This way, please," and see a woman indicating I should go in the opposite direction to the Land of No Waiting. I'm pretty sure I heard angels singing.

There's something to this travelling with a baby!

I get to the front of the line and the lady who indicates which counter to approach looks at me and goes, "Are you travelling together?"

...I look down at my chest at my sleeping baby and back and the lady. I point to my daughter and go, "...Me and her?"

The lady kind of laughed and waved me through and that's when I notice that two women had tagged along behind me and the lady thought we were all together.

3. Fast forward to the end of the long haul flight from Sydney to Seoul. Almost 10 hours and Bubs was a DREAM!! She slept most of the time and when she was awake she was living for all the cooing passers-by and just smiling at all the new sights and sounds.

Anyway, I'm loaded back down with all the previously mentioned stuff and squinting at the sign at the end of the jetway to see which direction I should go when an Asiana Airlines worker pops into my field of vision and stops me.

"Do you car?" she said, still searching her brain for the correct English word for "stroller."

It made me chuckle.

Vicariously yours,

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