17 January 2013

The Plane Ride

Our flight experience is a story all its own.  

Morning of Friday, January 4th, 2013. Mahalo to Laie's own 'Island Transportation' for picking us up at 5am and dropping us off at the Airport. That night/morning happened so fast with HUGE last minute packing, cleaning and important document finding! It was EXACTLY what I had been avoiding the weeks prior, but as usual, nothing like stress and rushing before traveling. Like I said, hugging my parents and siblings goodbye and leaving Laie was a blur. Mahie was barely awake and didn't understand why her Grandparents were hugging her long and tight, and eventually crying. We flew Air Pacific (first and LAST) lol, no it was fine. Actually it was a blessing we did, although at first it didn't seem like. 

When we checked in, the counter man wondered why James and I were assigned different seats. After trying many times to sit us together, policy explained that passengers with lap infants can't sit next to each other. (Annoying!) James took Mahie and I had Evan…and we both were window seats, rows far apart. As soon as we boarded, we explained (begged) to the flight attendant our situation and he immediately said he'd work on it after everyone was seated. Sooooo here comes my soon-to-be MELT DOWN! 

James' row was completely filled (although he sat by a wonderful couple). However, the two seats next me never filled UNTIL LITERALLY the last second with the most IRRITS SAMOAN LADY EVER! The very understanding Fijian flight attendant guy explained our situation and asked her kindly if we could have the whole row since we had two babies. He even offered her an upgraded seat at the front. And before you knew it, she threw a loud  and dramatic fit. She could've been the same age as Mahie, saying, "What's that you say?" (Flicking her wrist here and there) "The airlines sat me HERE!" "Why do I HAVE to move?" *He wasn't forcing her, just asking kindly but HINTiNG the obvious. Even the passengers around us couldn't believe she wouldn't move and I felt totally awkward two seats away cradling Evan. So the witch parked her broomstick and ALL her carry-ons, huge jacket, dead lei's, books, you name it…all NOT under the seat in front of her, but on the empty seat in between us, which the flight attendant already said I could use for the baby if needed!! And her damn pile started to crowd us. She seriously had no care for being considerate. I kept it all in because I had no sleep and I was still on a positive "Yay we're moving to Samoa" high. 

Two hours in. I had to pee badly. My arm was dead from carrying Evan, too scared to move incase I woke him plus my neck/back hurt. I resented the snoring ogre next to me blocking my way out and her pile of crap that kept leaning on me. James was too far away to call (and he was sleeping) to come grab baby so I could relieve myself. Plus Evan's diaper was so full I feared he'd get a rash. And then I started to get upset at James for putting the diaper bag in the compartment above instead of giving it to me. And THEN I heard Mahie starting to fuss followed by Evan right after…….in comes The Emotions: resentment toward EVERYONE on the plane, lol. Silent daggers at the woman next to me. Tearful eyes burning holes into the back of my husband's head. Hating on the airlines. Questioning if this move to Samoa was the right choice, upset at pulling an all-nighter... 

Melt-down: I bawled all my emotions out, everything I kept in since I first started to make preparations to move. 

…and then, literally, I heard a still small voice telling me to pray. And as soon as I started, it felt like everything was put on pause and every sound on mute. By the time I finished, I was calm and told myself, "You can do this." (But I think I took it a little too far, lol) I leaned over and pushed the woman hard to wake her, but I didn't wait. I was climbing over her lap before she could even open her eyes. Yes, she had that, "Oh no she didn't!" face on….And I gave it back to her, "Oh yes I DID!!".  Walked over to James sleeping and flung my hair tie at his forehead to wake him, handed him Evan. Grabbed the diaper bag on my way to the bathroom, shoved it across the woman to my seat…..and the whole time everyone watching me! Lol, after that I was a NEW me. For reals!  

When I went back for Evan, Mahie wanted me too. So I first took Mahie back to my seat and put a movie on for her. The woman was gone, so I removed her obnoxious pile from the middle seat and put it all on her seat. Even draping her dead leis all over her head rest. I returned with Evan and all three of us made house in our two seats. The woman returned and said, "Oh, you have two babies?" She sat for a little bit and tried to make small talk, but I gave her the cold shoulder and tended to my babies. After getting up one more time to grab something from James, the woman had decided to leave. The lady finally took that upgraded seat, without even telling the flight attendant. The two fijian flight attendant guys, the woman across the aisle and I all laughed shaking our heads. It took her 3 of the 5 1/2 hour flight to move. (Not that she HAD too, but hello!!) We finally had our row. James just stayed at his seat though, not wanting to bother the kind elderly woman next to him.

Thank you Heavenly Father for listening to me. For the flight attendants having compassion for me, bringing whatever I needed, eating all the snacks Mahie force fed them and even offering to hold Evan. For the Samoan woman across the aisle for reading my mind and offering to play with Evan & a bored/fussy Mahie the last hour and a half so I could finally knock out. (She even carried him all the way to Customs, lol)

What an experience traveling internationally with a toddler and newborn! No matter how many creative things I packed according to my Pinterest research, once a child wants OFF THE PLANE, there is NOTHING that can change their mind but landing!!


  1. What a great middle if the night read for me during feeding! Lol. We've flown air Pacific and yeah, never again! That's such a horrible rule! I wonder if it's all airlines! Though, I think when we flew to hi on airnz with our 1yo and 3 month old we were still able to sit together. Any way, what's done is done. Like I've said before, I wish I had your courage to speak my mind. Good on you for remembering to pray and then handling that lady like a champ! Lol!

  2. Waaaaattttt?? We can't sit together???? Crap! I don't wanna fly through Samoa anymore!! lol..(but we have to, since we gotta get Chu's visa)...man, thats what I'm dreading...lol, but good on you Ashlyn for handling two kids...and a sleeping husband and a IRRRIIIITTTZZZ lady!! :) I think I'll be praying everyday until we leave lol...

  3. omg. i just read this and i give you probs. you're such a great writer, i almost felt like i was there on the plane too lol would've slapped somebody for sure!! ahh you crack me up - love ya superwoman!!

  4. Ash, this made me tear up because I know how hard flying with babies is even when people are being helpful, let alone when some IRRITATING lady is sitting next to you not being considerate. You're such a good mommy, you HANDLED business, girl!