Years ago I told Chris I really wanted to go to Thailand and he said something along the lines of, ‘Thailand?! They have an oppressive government and I will NEVER go there!’ So I was disappointed but the list of places I want to go is long so I just moved on.
Fast forward to about a month ago and Chris found out he would be attending Lenaro Connect Asia in Bangkok. Obviously I wasn’t going to let him leave me behind so we came up with the plan that we’d go with him and bring my Mom to help with the kids. Flights and accommodations were super reasonable so we moved quickly to commit to the trip. We got our wires crossed booking though and Chris ended up on a different flight. No biggie since he’d be in first class anyway and that removes the temptation to swap seats during the flight which would probably have felt like cheating his company.
Chris left Saturday morning amidst lots of angst about clearing customs with his equipment. As I write this on the leg from Bejing to Bangkok I am praying that he was successful. *Update: he was!* We left a little later Saturday morning but got to the airport 3 hours early in case we ran into difficulties taking the kids out of the country (we did going to Vancouver last year). The short 1 hour jump to New York wasn’t quite as painless as we expected and Helen Jeanette had an accident. She told us she needed to go right when we’d started the descent and she couldn’t hold it until we landed. She was wearing undies at that point but we switched to pull ups for the rest of the trip.
We had to check back in at JFK and we ran into a pretty long delay when Air China had no record of the luggage we’d checked, but we still had time for lunch and for Helen Jeanette to have another accident. She warned us again but we were too far from the restrooms and the pull-up leaked onto her pants. At this point I only had one more pair of pants in the carry on so I panicked and bought her an expensive Ralph Lauren outfit (in boys so she can pass it down to Killian). We should be reunited with our checked bags in an hour so it was probably not necessary though.
The 13.5 hour leg to Bejing was brutal. I had wrongly assumed they would have milk on board and that wrecked havoc on Killian’s sleep. It’s the first flight where I know we’ve been very disruptive for any substantial period of time. Helen Jeanette was a champ with just a couple whines and cries. Her worst outbreak lasted about a minute and was because Oma had dared to take away the iPad. Just because Helen Jeanette was asleep did NOT mean she was done using it!
We landed 45 minutes late and had to sprint (carrying the kids and our stuff) though a very confusing customs and security process and then down a very long hallway. Once we got on board we realized they had seated us all separately and the stewardesses had a really hard time understanding why this was a problem. They asked me many times to just take our seats and we’d sort it out in the air. I figured there was a 50:50 chance Helen Jeanette would be cool with it but the other possibility was she has a complete freak out so I stood my ground until they moved her next to me. We never got my mom moved near us but she took each of the kids at certain points.
The 5 hour flight to Bangkok felt long and boring but the kids were well behaved and they both slept a little. The kids, especially Helen Jeanette were a big hit with the couple sitting next to us. I think this is probably a good foreshadowing of our time here, I’ve heard the Thai people love children, especially blondes.
Chris met us outside customs and we shared a van with his boss and made it to the hotel around 1 am. Killian got some milk from room service and fell asleep hard! I think the kids will be in a good position today to handle the jet lag. Mom and I will not be in as good a position but we can handle our exhaustion better then the kids.
Our 5 star hotel is fantastic and lavish and about the same price as a Hampton Inn back home.