Thursday, June 05, 2008

There And Back Again--A Blogger's Tale

Ked and I got back to Portland last night from a week spent in Washington D.C.. It was a great trip, with full days and perfect weather (except for that last day--I'll have to tell you about that). I planned on photo-blogging the experience day-by-day, but our computer died the first night off the plane. We were disappointed, because we love to go through pictures together each evening, edit and caption them for posting to the blog as our rather public personal journal. Due to circumstances beyond our control, however, this time that was not to be, and realistically I'll have to do it on my own now that we are back to our normal schedule and obligations. Oh well. We still had a lovely time, and I will try to edit the photos and remember trip details to the best of my ability. I hope to post pictures of each day as I can get to them. I'm not sure how many good ones we got, since I couldn't download them off the camera until we got home. It's a good thing I had a 2 GB card in my camera, with a spare in the case! I went through memory like mad, so hopefully there will be a few pics worth sharing.

Since the pictures aren't ready yet, I'll just share a small bit of the travails of getting to our destination. This really isn't to whet your appetite for things to come, since the bulk of the vacation was much more pleasant than either of the travelling days, but as I said, this is our trip journal, so I'm going to include the not-so-pleasant bits as part of the memories. Here we go:

I am a flying screaming-child-magnet. On the first stage of our journey to Washington D.C., from Portland to Denver, Ked and I shared our small plane with no less than five miniature sound generators, alternately mewling and bellowing their way cross-continent. The particularly shrill-voiced two-year-old was in the seat directly behind mine, an auditory treat to say the least, and other wee folk of varying sizes were stationed in close proximity thereabout. They ranged in age from infant to toddler, which added a rather orchestral effect to the experience. To our left we had the soprano saxophone blatting of an infant hunger protest, while off to the rear center right the harmonious piccolo bleat of a whiny toddler in seat-belt mutiny joined the swelling cacophonous song. At times it really was quite humorous, although we did feel awfully sorry for the small-fry and their doubtlessly suffering parents.

Ah, screaming children... this brings back memories of the flight Ked and I took home from Orlando a couple of years ago. This flight was the pinnacle (please, God, let this be true) of my distressed-child-attracting career. During the six-hour flight, the three-year-old angel directly in front of us screamed non-stop for three of them. What's more, the overwhelmed parents allowed the little terror to stand upright in her seat--facing backwards--for most of the vocal exercise, allowing us the full measure of volume from her small, but highly-developed lungs. When the child finally fell asleep from exhaustion, in her mother's arms, her haggard dam never twitched a muscle for the rest of the flight, lest she wake the tiny human bazooka and start the whole process going again.

The children on the flight to D.C. were far tamer by comparison. The toddler behind us lulled herself to sleep after a mere twenty minutes or so of aural unpleasantness. The lovely infant across the aisle briefly demanded an "in flight snack," but as mom came appropriately equipped to provide said refreshment, baby was soon happily nursing and remained quiet for the remainder of the journey. Other howlings emanated at times from locations throughout the plane, and I confess to being grateful when we arrived in Denver, but since nothing even approached the level of distress we experienced on our return from Orlando, all-in-all I'd say this flight was a success. One child even laughed with delight at the turbulence of landing, a charming sound that helped maintain some auditory balance to stage one of the trip.

Stage two, although a longer flight, was much less "stimulating." It was quite blessedly uneventful--unlike our flight home. Remind me to tell you about that part later. It was a trip!