This morning they were talking about kids, travelling with them and specifically on planes. It made me think of when I used to travel with my one-year old and two-year old all the way from Moscow to Johannesburg. I would generally do this without my husband. After a while I got it down to a fine art. Mostly, I had to get everything I needed into one backpack, to keep both hands free. My youngest was a bolter! We had her almost going through X-Ray machines, climbing into lifts, running down the baggage carousel (you get the picture here). The looks as we got on the plane were always priceless - especially in Business Class (company travel I love you!). Bear in mind that at the time a child paid 60% of full fare. Actually, the people who gave me the worst looks were generally the ones who came up to me afterwards and commented on how well the girls behaved. And they did. Thank God!
But what I wanted to say here is that I owe a big thank you to all those customs officials who moved us to the head of the queue, all the strangers who helped me get baggage off the carousel, all the attendants who brought toys and juice and warmed bottles and, most of all, to all those people who remembered with empathy just how hard it is the get kids through an international transit.
I make a point of paying this one forward.