Sunday, September 6, 2009
From D.C., with love...
My boys and I are back from our mini vacation to Washington, D.C. We had an amazing time visiting family, sight-seeing, and enjoying ourselves.
However, travelling with two young children is not easy. Rather, travelling with a 19 month old is not easy! Christos was amazing the entire trip, and as usual, he was perfect on the airplane. Dimitry, however, did not love the fact that he couldn't move around on the plane. There was some crying and screaming, and some dirty looks were sent my way. I let the boys run around when we were allowed to take our seatbelts of. Yes, it was loud. And I'm sorry. But they needed to move around. And yes, it was only a one hour flight. And thank God for that! Oh, also, going to the bathroom with 2 kids in the tiny stall wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. You just need to have a sense of humour about it.
Here's my vacation, in summary:
First of all, to the ticket agent at Air Canada who was a replica of the agent in Planes, Trains and Automobiles - you suck, woman! (So I know this has nothing to do with my story but that is one of my most favourite scenes in a movie, ever. Don't you agree? How many times have you felt like Steve Martin, only to be met by a woman like that? Me? A LOT!) So, I arrived at the airport at 1:17. Our flight left for D.C. at 2:20. I noticed no one was as the United counter, so I kindly asked the Air Canada agent where the United person was.
"Oh, if she's not there, that means you missed your flight, sorry."
"Um, actually, I'm on time, and I have not missed my flight. Perhaps you can call her on that phone you have there?"
"I can't do that! You missed your flight! Go over there and book a new flight!"
I go running to get us new tickets, after a bit more back-and-forth conversation with the world's laziest human. My dad is furious, and he's about to lose it on her. So, I'm running to get us new tickets. I start talking to another lady when I hear my dad call me - the United lady had returned! See? We didn't miss our flight, after all! So, phew. My boys and I made our flight, and we arrived, without incident, to beautiful, sunny Washington D.C.
It was so hot! I loved it. We went to my uncle and aunt's home in Bethesda, where I used to live. It was so great being there again, and it was great being there with my boys. I slept with both of them in my old bed, and it was so sweet sleeping in the middle of my little munchkins. Even though I had no room, and slept like a mummy the entire time. My grandparents were also visiting, so I had a few extra hands to help out. Christos loved playing with his older cousin, and the boys all loved playing outside together.
I also had the chance to meet the amazing Jill from Scary Mommy (on my birthday!) She came to Barnes and Nobles with her youngest cutie-pie, and we were able to talk for a short while. She is just as sweet and personable as I thought she would be. And I had a chance to snuggle her baby boy - he was so cute! She even brought my boys some presents to entertain them on the plane ride home. Thanks, Jill! Can't wait to hang out with you again...
Of course, we also went to Georgetown. We walked around and had some ice cream at Dean and Deluca. I would go there almost everyday for coffee when I lived in D.C. Georgetown is truly beautiful. And not only for the shopping!
I showed my boys the TV station where I worked as an intern...
And what's a trip to D.C. without a visit the Lincoln Memorial? I drove there, struggled to find parking, struggled with my sort of broken double MacLaren stroller, and struggled to remain calm, but we made it! Christos and Dimitry ran up the stairs quicker than I expected. Christos was in awe. "So where is that man now?" he asked, later. If you've never visited D.C. before, I suggest you start your sight-seeing with the Lincoln Memorial. From there, you can walk to all the other attractions and museums.
I also braved it and took the subway alone with Christos and Dimitry, just to show them how cool the subway system in D.C. is. We almost got stuck in a small elevator, but really, I hadn't pressed the button to go down, and we were waiting for 5 minutes for the doors to open. After pressing the alarm, and calling security, I realized my mistake and pressed the right button. Phew.
We visited another book store, and took a taxi home. I was exhausted!
And yes, I did manage to get in some shopping, although not much. Let's face it. Shopping with kids is almost impossible. I went to J.Crew to buy a new fall wardrobe for me and a few things for the boys. I am in love with that store! I bought the boys some new shoes from Nordstrom's and then we went to the the most amazing park, ever. It was massive, in a huge forest, and had at least a dozen different play structures.
And on my birthday, I did induldged in my favourite cheesecake from The Cheesecake Factory - the Brownie Fudge Cheesecake a la mode. It was worth every bite!
One last story... I bought my boys these little balls that have water in them, with sparkles. You know, those rubber bouncy balls? Christos's was big and turquoise, his favourite colour. Inside, it had little plastic fishies. I bought one for Dimitry, too. They were taken from us at the airport, because they contained water. I hate the security measures at airports now. HATE them. It was quite the ordeal getting all my stuff, including the stroller and boys through. My son was crying his head off, because he did not understand why he was not allowed to bring his brand-new favourite ball home with him. And you try explaining to a child that terrorists ruined the way sane people have to travel from now on. Not easy. He felt terrible, and he was devestated. It broke my heart in a million pieces.
But, we made it home! Happily. Home, sweet home. I couldn't have asked for a better vacation with my darling children. We had a lot of laughs, and a lot of fun. It was just perfect.
And I miss D.C. already. It is the only other city I could see myself moving to. Maybe one day?