Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Pre-Alaskan Adventure: At the Airport and (Not So Much) Seeing Seattle

Normally, I wouldn't spend the majority of a blog post about the parts prior to a vacation, but our pre-Alaska experience was something I knew I wanted to document, and it was certainly not a forgettable day.

I had been, honestly, a little anxious (and I am not a worrier, typically) about the flight, mainly because it was Connor's first experience in the air, and I wasn't sure how he would react and if he would bother the other passengers in such a confined space.  Adding to my stress was the fact that Jason would not be flying with us. (It is a long story that only he can tell, but in essence he is terrified of flying, decided to take an Amtrak train, which was shut down due to flooding, and ended up spending over two days getting to Seattle on several buses...and yet he STILL managed to get there before we did.)  Not having my best bud, partner, and Connor-wrangler there to help out in case of a meltdown was upsetting, but luckily I had lots of family to take his place.

Connor, in his carseat, pre-plane drama

Our flight on Saturday morning was supposed to leave at 6:30 (CDT), so we were up by 4 (Happily, we had spent the night with Jason's parents and were already in Lville.) and on our way to the airport by 4:50.  Everything went smoothly: security, finding milk for Connor, using his Beco carrier so I had two free hands for luggage, boarding the plane, sitting near family in case Connor wanted to move about.  That is, UNTIL we were about to take off.  The plane had a malfunction in one of its flaps (I must point out that I am VERY thankful they found the problem before we took off.) and after lots of waiting were asked to deboard.  The plan would take several hours to fix, and we were all moved to different flights.  Our 7:30 flight was then moved to 2:55, which meant we would be spending the next 7+ hours in the Louisville airport.  Connor ran off some energy in an empty gate area, played with his trucks, napped on my arm (which never fully regained feeling that day), and enjoyed a Starbucks muffin.  He actually handled the wait better than the rest of us, I believe (except for some folks who slept most of the day away on the airport carpet).

After a lengthy wait, the second plane was boarded and took off with no issues.  It turned out that my fear of Connor's reaction was completely unfounded, because he LOVED flying.  His ears never seemed to bother him, and he was mostly content to look out the window and say "clouds" and "wing" over and over again.  I can't say enough about what a trooper he was that whole day.  I was so proud of him, as well as relieved that I wasn't "that" mom with the screaming kid on the plane.

enjoying a snack before his first flight
totally relaxed in mid-air

The only upside to the delay was that this is what was awaiting me at the airport:

After such a long day, Jason surprised Connor and me at the airport with flowers and gifts.  It was the best sight.

The other main downside to the delay in the airport was that instead of arriving in Seattle at 12:55 and having the entire day to sightsee, we instead arrived at after 8 p.m. and were unable to see anything but the airport and our hotel.  After doing research on the city and knowing how many wonderful things there were to do, it was a big disappointment.  Instead, we ordered pizza and cheesesticks and went to bed.

Jason, however, was able to spend the entire day touring the city, and he showered me with a few goodies out of pity:

Jason definitely knows the ways to my heart.

chocolate, coffee, and vanilla macarons from Le Panier in Pike Place Market
 So, as you can see, lots happened before we even made it to the ship.  Upcoming posts include: Ketchikan, Tracy Arm Fjord, Juneau, Skagway, and Vacation Food.  :)

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