While the trip to Thailand really started months ago with an unbelievable amount of prep I will skip that part except for saying that over planning really is necessary when dragging a clingy 18 month old across the world. Research Research Research. I am so glad I did.
The night before we left for our trip Wor and I got a grand total of 2 hours combined sleep. Wor got 2 and I got 0. Just keep that in mind for later. Our flight took off early on Wednesday morning and we flew into Newark, NJ. Up until Newark our trip was pretty OK. I pretty much thought that I was superwoman and that everyone who had expressed seemed shocked that we were going to attempt this were overreacting.
Cue the 13 hour flight from hell. Backpacks stuffed at our feet and a toddler sleeping in our laps. Lily was an angel and did better than I could have ever expected but the flight was just simply horrid. Having a baby asleep on us meant we couldn't change positions to get as comfortable as possible in those tiny airplane seats, when she was awake it meant that we were trying to keep her contained in about 2 square feet of space or from repeatedly kicking the seat in front of us simply because we said the word no the first time. The only reason I want to remember any of those 13 hours is so that I can be reminded that I never, ever, ever want to travel internationally with a child again. And Wor and I are seriously considering waiting to travel abroad until we can afford 2 Business First seats.
When we landed in Tokyo I had this wonderfully exciting and scary feeling of being 100% out of my comfort zone. English wasn't being spoken, US dollars weren't being used, we had the option of using a squatter toilet, a regular toilet or a bidet and last but not least I was a tall, white (and I mean transparently white), blond, blue eyed girl in a sea of Asian people. I planted Wor and Lily in a little play area and went off in search of some food. This is when I realized I was in real trouble, I went to 2 stores that I am pretty sure carried food as people walking out were eating stuff but if you asked me to point to something that I would eat I wouldn't be able to. The labels were all in Japanese and I fled! Wor didn't fare any better and I was pretty sure that once we reached Thailand we would starve if I was the one in charge of figuring out the food.
To skip over the next flight and get to the landing would probably be best. I was thrilled to be done and have the prospect of a bed in my future. We survived. Barely. By the end I wanted to melt into the pile of mushy, screaming, temper tantrum throwing toddler that Lily should have been but wasn't. Instead, I bucked up and met Wor's wonderfully gracious and kind family. They put a genuine smile on my face and somehow it was as if someone had given me a shot of caffeine and the trip didn't seem so exhausting.
This post will be the only one without pictures because honestly airplane pictures are kind of boring. I promise that the rest of the posts will have as many pictures as you could want.
(The Hello and Goodbye of Thailand)