Travels With Child : http://www.travelswithchild.org

Distant Lands

Saturday, 10 November 2007

The Loudest Airport Lounge in The World

Is the international departures lounge in Fiji.  Hands down.  That is, if they're not clapped firmly over your ears.

Someone in Fiji airport has decided that you are, or wish to become, hearing impaired.  Moreover, they feel that this transition should be done to an endless loop of (for us at least) Perfect Strangers reruns.  Oh, Bronson Pinchot, what did I ever do to you?

This morning marks that point in our flight to New Zealand two years ago where we'd braved the Dulles and Fort Worth airports, lived through the transition from regional to International at LAX (with all of our luggage, don't you think they didn't try). And had completed the longest leg of our trip across the Pacific with wonderful Air Singapore.  We landed in Fiji at 5 am, with accompaniment by ukulele.

Flying long distance on airline miles meant a lot of stopovers, and a couple of long ones.  We could have hopped an airport van for a quick tour of the island.  But we figured on [...]More

Wednesday, 24 October 2007

The Art of Not Waiting (in Line)

In Paris, lines outside the Louvre, the Musée d'Orsay, and many other sites can be very long, and filled with ire. If you are in that line, with a young child, you know you have a short window of opportunity before someone gets crazy.
Musée d'Orsay

So, do you get to see the Degas, or pass a few quiet moments in the hallway outside of the Mona Lisa's gallery (where there are Quite A Few things to see, besides Herself), or do you have to speed through the visit, head straight for the gift shop, and then find a playground where you can place yourself face down at the base of the slide and let little feet step all over you?

Behold, the wonders of the Paris Museum Pass, which gets you in the door, without [...]More

A Message from Paris

This morning, atop my email stack, I found a friendly bonjour from the Hotels Paris Rive Gauche, with photographs attached.  I hate a lot of the email I receive from stores I've shopped in (Pottery Barn, this means you. … er, But don't stop, please…) and chain hotels I've stayed in for a night.  But this is different - no big sell attached, no Weekend Deals! Just a photographer's view of Paris from the perspective of someone new.  It's a classy way of staying in touch, and, by our experience with the Residence Henri IV, very much par for the course. 

We arrived at the Henri IV near the very end of one of the hottest weeks in Europe in 2006.  We'd been in Germany, for a wedding, and had taken the train from Aachen to Paris. 

The [...]More

Sunday, 21 October 2007

An Ode to my (former) stroller

That first black Maclaren umbrella stroller still gets us all misty-eyed when we think of how well it traveled.

The seat fully reclined - none of the click-strap stuff from later models - and the hood extended way out. Diaper changes - not a problem; it was the perfect place for a pit-stop. Naps in the afternoon? We were free to keep wandering, without disturbing her. Rain? No worries. The clear plastic hood kept her dry while we (sometimes) got soaked. She thought that was hilarious.
Orewa Beach, New Zealand

It opened fast, and folded up with one hand (after reading the manual a couple of times) - so small that we could leave it with the folks at a gate and have it waiting for us the next gate - huzzah.

We test flew with it to Cleveland in 2005, then a month later, packed it with us to [...]More

Thursday, 18 October 2007

Flying to New Zealand on (mostly) Airline Miles: 34 hours

Counting three flights within the US and one international layover in Fiji.

The attendants on Singapore Air were amazingly nice, and we had seats with a bassinet - the only way to fly with an infant.

November 9 will mark the second anniversary of our trip to New Zealand - probably good for a few walks down memory lane.

We will of course toast Aunt Sue and Uncle Chris, whose amazing wedding, and need for a wee flower girl, had us making the flight in the first place. But we are so glad we did.

Even if she cut five teeth in the process.More
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