10-Day Whirlwind Tour

I have been away on vacation with my teen, Ysabela, for 10 days, but it feels like a lot longer!  I’m happy to be home and blogging again.  In this series of blogs, I will go over the trip day by day to share the experiences with you all.  I kept a journal just for that purpose since I had so many people interested in our travels.

July 10, 2016: We were lucky enough to be transported by friends to the airport, so that saved me a lot of parking fees and stress.  We made our flight, but it was a bit sketchy.  Dawn, one of the flight attendants, was there, but she wasn’t a bit helpful.  The plane shook and made odd noises—enough to alarm Bela.  I reassured her, but I was a bit concerned until things evened out.  Since our flight took off late, we barely made the connecting flight in Chicago.  We were the last ones to board.  That part was very stressful, as you can imagine!

After we got settled in on the flight across the pond, Jeffrey Alan made us feel at home.  This plane was so much different from the others we have taken!  First class was WOW!  Bela and I decided that one day, we will travel to Europe in that section!  We kept going to the “regular people” seating.  Each row was divided as such: 3-4-3.  Dinner was a sight!  I chose pasta, Bela wanted chicken, so we were both satisfied.  Each tray had the main course, a small bottle of water, a roll, salad with pomegranate acai vinaigrette dressing on the side, a small wedge of cheese and crackers.  I ate almost everything while I watched Allegiant; Bela tuned in to see a Goose Bumps movie.  We had time on the flight for about three movies if we stayed awake for the entire seven-hour flight.  We definitely felt spoiled.  Supper made us look forward to breakfast!

Flight information showed Chicago to London as 3939 miles which translated into seven hours and 20 minutes.  I enjoyed my headphones and blanket.  Daddy’s Home was my second movie choice.  I did end up sleeping some.

July 11, 2016:  We landed in London around nine in the morning (their time, not ours).  It took forever to get through the passport check.  Once we escaped that, all I wanted was a smoke!  I left Bela with an EF Tour lady while I found a smoking area.  After so many hours without one, I felt a bit dizzy afterward.

The EF Tour lady took Bela to Richard, our babysitter/guide/go-to guy, and he finished collecting the rest of our group.  We dropped off our luggage at the bus while he passed out our Oyster cards.  Oyster cards are used for public transportation.  We saw a lot of the metro today!  We literally walked miles.  One lady had a FitBit and said we had already walked almost three miles, but she didn’t have it on all day.  We definitely got in way more than 10,000 steps.

We saw buskers in Trafalgar Square and hoofed it over to Covent Garden to view some awesome statues.  Our final destination for the day was Premier Inn in the Shoreditch area of town.  More pictures and info to come!

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Power Hungry?

It seems like every time I read the news, there’s another headline about a flight attendant kicking an innocent kid and/or family off of an airplane.  It really makes me angry on behalf of the families.  I think today’s flight attendants are missing the point of their job—it is to provide service to customers who have paid a high price for that service.  If a customer is drunk and/or menacing, please have that person escorted off of the flight!  If a kid is crying and needs warm milk or an Aspie child needs a snack to provide comfort and a bit of joy, provide some heated milk or a snack!  It’s your JOB!  That’s part of the service you are on board to provide.

If you are unhappy with your life choices and feel powerless, go find another job.  Don’t go on a power trip by berating an already embarrassed parent of a crying toddler.  Stop bullying children who can’t help their actions.  You are making the situation worse and making yourself look like the small person you are.

It reminds me of the time my (older) daughter and I were on a Greyhound bus from Virginia to Georgia to visit a friend.  It was about nine at night, and she was sitting on my lap giggling.  She was tired and trying to stay awake.  Others on the bus were quiet and napping or thinking profound thoughts.  I tried to shush her, but it made her laugh anyway.

The bus driver gave us a couple of stink eyes before he motioned me forward to say, “Would you keep your kid quiet?  People are trying to sleep.”  I didn’t miss a beat and replied, “I have a great idea!  Why don’t you keep her quiet, and I’ll drive the bus!”  I marched back to my seat, and we made it to our destination with no further issues.

Suffice it to say that I believe most flight attendants love their job and are good at it.  It’s the bad ones getting the press coverage that makes them all look bad.  That’s a real shame.