Thursday, July 07, 2011

The day trip that only cost $50, my sanity and my will to ever travel again

While FunnyKid and I were vacationing at my sister's house last week, she and I decided to take FunnyKid and the two cutest nephews in the world to Baltimore's Inner Harbor for a day. We figured hauling around three kids ages 2 1/2 years, 18 months and 10 months would be a little stressful, but were willing to do it for the experience.

We had an "experience" alright.

The fun started with finding a place to park (and finding out we would be paying $23 for the privilege) and then trying to get into one of the buildings where the shops and restaurants are. Handicapped entrances, which we needed in order to get two strollers into the building, were hard to find and required a long walk to get to them. Having done this before, we were smart enough to have packed a picnic lunch rather than try to navigate a restaurant.

Because FunnyKid is still limited by crawling, I had to get used to the fact that my nephews were able to take off in two different directions with no notice. More than once, kat's lil sis went after one while I tried to head off the other with my stroller.

We adapted well. Kat's lil sis is very laid back (she has to be with two toddlers!) so it didn't bother her when the boys got soaked in a fountain and when we picked a spot on the grass to change diapers (there was no way we were going to navigate handicapped entrances again to find bathrooms). And she barely batted an eye as we walked along the water with one of her boys throwing a temper tantrum because the carousel was being repaired.

While one of the most fun parts of our trip was taking the boys on a water taxi to a different part of the city, it was also one of the most challenging. On our way out of the Inner Harbor, we had the advantage of full stomachs and cooperative kids so even having to empty the strollers of kids and bags before boarding and then begging the boat employees to help heft the strollers onto the boat didn't bother us.

The way back was a different story. Both the moms and the kids were exhausted and hot and hungry. It was a recipe for disaster. Basically, I tried to divide my time between keeping FunnyKid from throwing himself overboard and talking one of my nephews out of disappearing under the seats, while lil sis had a wrestling match her younger son to keep him in the seat, suffering multiple slaps to the head in the process (I think I had the better deal because at least FunnyKid is too little to put up much resistance).

The way home included tons of traffic and overtired kiddos who kept waking the others up. And the irony of it is that all of the boys are too young to ever remember the trip outside of looking at all the photos we took. We agreed it's going to take some time for us to forget the experience and try to take all the boys out again with just the two of us. Eight or nine years ought to do it.


Kimberly said...

I have two toddlers, and I've totally been there. You'll look back at the trip and smirk, if not laugh, eventually. But $23.00 for parking is completely ridiculous! That's total robbery!

KAT's lil sis said...

"What were we thinking, what were we thinking?" Oh wait, I think our mantra was "This was worth it, this was worth it!"