In keeping with the “everything is different once you have kids” theme, yesterday we took the kids on their first airplane. Well, technically 2 airplanes. Will and I prepped for every possible scenario. We had iDevices ready, complete with new games and shows and Bluetooth kid-friendly headphones. I had bought new stories and activity books. We had crayons. Will had bought crush-proof snacks.
The kids were awesome. They were actually so excited they just sort of absorbed the first flight, not even breaking out the goods until our connecting flight. Honestly the most challenging part of the trip? Parking at the New Orleans airport (y’all have some ‘splaining to do) and car seats. F’ing car seats. Fortunately one of my dad’s neighbors had one we could borrow for Felix so we just carried Stella’s with us. Awkward, but doable.
We made it to VA Beach, checked in, and my dad and stepmom met us at our hotel’s restaurant for dinner. It had been a long day, and my kids were ready to go. The deal was we would eat and then head down to the indoor pool for a swim before bed.
The restaurant had snow crab – one of the greatest foods on earth according to my children. Their grandfather was more than happy to indulge them, so each of my kids had a full pound plus a huge side – fries for the dude and a heaping bowl of buttered pasta for Stella. Oh, and then there was ice cream.
Flash forward about 45 minutes later. Stella is happily swimming and Felix is splashing/wading. One characteristic of Stella’s “swimming” technique is a unique ability to swallow half the pool and gag herself without missing a beat. There was a crucial difference this time, however, in that not only did she just gag and sound disgusting, she gagged and produced her recently-consumed pound of crab leg meat with fries.
The only good thing about this incident was at least she didn’t barf in the pool. It all landed quite spectacularly at the top of the stairs. Also, all of the other people enjoying the pool were crammed in the child’s wading pool-sized hot tub – all 16 of them, which is really strange but who am I to judge at this point?
So there I am, trying to keep my children from wading through partially digested crab while mopping it up with woefully inadequate hotel towels. The entire time I’m trying to figure out what the hell to do with the mess as well as score new towels. I manged to dump the solids in a garbage can. I was afraid to put the towels in the poolside hamper, as I didn’t want 2 “missing” crappy towels charged to our room. I had to relent, however, when a plague of gnats and flies arrived drawn by the smell. It was biblical.
Stella, meantime, was itching to get back in the pool. I let her with the condition that if I heard her gag once more, we were calling it done. Will arrived at that point with wine. He had missed all the fun running to the store. When I filled him in, he wanted to know if it was gross and embarrassing. I told him yes on both counts, asshole.
He got his cummuppance. Not 2 minutes after he arrived and we were trying to enjoy a little bit of a cocktail hour with my dad and stepmom, I noticed a nice brown smear traveling up my son’s back. There were also splats of wet smelly brownness on the rail leading in to the pool. I wrapped a pool towel around our son leaving Will with splat duty. At that point, we had to concede defeat and take our disgusting children upstairs for decon.
And swim diapers…. what the hell?! Sure, kids swimming in regular diapers is ridiculous. They get all swollen and bulbous; your kid’s genital region looks all Michelin Man, only sagging due to the presence of water instead of air. But they don’t keep in the stuff that counts. Really.
So that summarizes our first few hours in Virginia Beach. I was so worried about plane activities I neglected to pack disinfectants. So far today, my crew has managed to eat breakfast and walk on the beach without any kind of biological weapons attack. Wish us luck that they can keep their bodily functions to themselves the rest of the trip.