A couple of weeks ago I took Connie on a little trip to Aviemore on the train. She loved it. So much so that she then set her sights higher. Much higher. Connie went on and on (and on) about going on an airplane.
She hasn’t got a passport yet so we couldn’t go abroad. Our airport is tiny and doesn’t really fly to many destinations. I looked up flights to London and the were pretty cheap. We couldn’t really afford a hotel just now so I booked to go there and back in a day. It was the plane she wanted to go on, she wasn’t bothered about being in London.
It was a long day for both of us. We got up about quarter to five in the morning. It was kind of nice. Connie was so sleepy she just did as she was told. She started to get super excited as she was getting in the car.
I was getting nervous. I’ve never driven to the airport before – I made Daniel drive me there and drive around a couple of days before so I would know where to go – and now I had to do it alone in the dark! I was fine, obviously.
We got there and through security, Connie was fascinated by the convayor belts and X-ray machines. And soon enough we’re boarding the plane.
The flight was then delayed by an hour due to mist at Gatwick. Oh joy. Connie made friends with the two boys in front of us and chatted to the gentleman behind. She played with her colouring book and sang me some songs. She was excellent at take off.
Towards the end of the flight she got, understandably, restless and began her usual incessant whining. But she’d been on the plane an hour longer than she should’ve been. The lady in the seat in front offered Connie a book to read, but she was having none of it. Toddlers know a distraction when they see one. Thank you anyway kind stranger. Connie really got into the swing of her screechy tantrum when they put the seatbelt lights on for landing. I had to wrestle her into her seat and keep a hold of her belt to stop her taking it off. By this point she was wailing at the top of her voice and I was so embarrassed I was trying to hide and not making eye contact with anyone.
We landed fine and got all of our bits and pieces together. The gentleman behind us then told me Connie had been a delight and that I should worry too much, it always seemed worse to the parent than to everyone else. He finished by telling me I was doing a good job. Thank you. Maybe it wasn’t much to you but that made the tantrums throughout the rest of the day so much easier to deal with. So to the kind stranger on the seven am flight, Inverness to Gatwick on the twenty-eighth of March, thank you, thank you thank you thank you.
We got into London having been on a bus from the plane to the airport, a shuttle from north terminal to south and a train from the airport to Victoria station. Connie was in her element. And when she found out we were going on the underground it was like Christmas had come early!
We headed to the zoo. It was a lovely day. Connie enjoyed seeing the animals, although wouldn’t go into the petting area. Apparently not a fan of goats, she finds birds boring, she would like to ride a zebra, a butterfly bit her finger (it didn’t go anywhere near her), Dory was there to look for Nemo, but he’d already gone down the sink, the tiger was being a lazy bones and, just like her mother, the giraffes were her favourite.
When we left the zoo, Connie took the mother of all tantrums. Not, because she didn’t want to leave, but, because she wanted to go back to the airport. We were far too early for that so – after about ten minutes – I managed to calm her down and we went to M&M world.
Stupid idea on my part because all I heard the whole time was “can I have that?” She had fun though, all the M&M statues around and we did get some to take home.
The trip home was very quiet. Connie fell asleep on the train, she woke up enough to have dinner at the airport, then we boarded the plane and she was sleepy again. No wonder, it had been a long day. She couldn’t get comfy in her seat so ended up sleeping on me.
I got teary – thankfully no one noticed – watching her sleep. She isn’t a baby anymore, but she’ll always be my baby. And the days of sleeping on my knee are drawing to a close, but hopefully I’ll get a few more.
What a great day. I’m rocking it at this Mum thing just now.