After a failed attempt on Monday night- due to apocalyptic weather in the Northeast- we finally made it home late last night from our trip to the Sunshine State.
The flights there and back were great, the Little Man did surprisingly well and I managed to get through both trips with my sanity and dignity well in tact. While I had lots of fun experiencing Jax's first flight with him, I have to admit that traveling sans babe, used to be much simpler. However, I am doing a fair amount of back patting today as the process, while more time consuming than in the past, was pretty well orchestrated by moi. Traveling with a baby, albeit alone, can be exhausting. Just locating where all of the elevators are in the airport can be feel reminiscent of trying to find the Holy Grail. (Don't worry, they're all located on the opposite end of whatever side of the terminal you are currently in, in comparison to where you need to be. )
Despite the unsolicited workout though it wasn't too bad. I somehow managed to think of just about everything, which I'm still trying to figure how that was possible when just last week I put the salt and pepper in the fridge while cleaning up after dinner due to a still lingering pest called baby brain.
Once we arrived, we were greeted by an exhuberant Grammy, as expected, complete with camera in hand to capture Jax exiting off of his very first flight. Very cute.
We had a short ride home from the airport and after the bathing/ PJ/ bed rituals were performed I was greeted with a well deserved glass of wine.
On Saturday we headed into Hyde Park, which is a really great area of fantastic tree lined streets filled with beautiful homes, all of which lead to the bay, for the annual Gasparilla Kids Extravaganza and Pirate Parade. This was the Little Man's first parade and he absolutely loved checking out all of the floats, people dressed like pirates and catching Mardi Gras beads with the rest of the crowd.
a pirate ship in Tampa Bay
We capped off the day with a nice dinner out while a very tired little pirate snoozed in his stroller,
recuperating from a hard day of "looting."
On Sunday we celebrated my sister's baby shower since she is expecting a little bean the first week of March. Jax was the only "guy" at the party and was a huge hit with all of the ladies. My sister received lots of adorable gifts from friends and family and is off to a great start for the little one.
Jax and his Aunt Sheena
We were supposed to return home on Monday night but as I mentioned in the beginning of this post the weather in and around NYC was horrible with torrential rains and 70 mph winds reported. This resulted in a 4hr delay of our already late flight home which would have ended with the little man and I getting home in the wee hours of the morning, not my idea of a good time.
With the help of Angela, a JetBlue representative at Gate A12 in Tampa Int'l Airport, (yes this is a shoutout) we were rebooked on a flight home the following day- FREE OF CHARGE.
I'm not sure what was more shocking: the fact that it was so seemless getting on another flight without so much as a cent coming out of my pocket -when the airlines charge you extra for breathing in more air than the guy next to you these days - or my utter disbelief that there are still people that exist that actually care about being helpful (in an age of seemingly non-existent customer service.) I appreciated the fact that she took pity on a mother traveling solo with a small baby that is clearly not going to last through your so called 4 hr delay getting us home at 1am. This of course after I checked my flight 67 times before I left for the airport and you kept reporting that it was "On Time." Did I mention that I had already checked our bags and she had them immediately pulled for us so that we wouldn't be inconvenienced? Unreal.
So for the above reasons, and in the hope of shaming others into doing a little more than what is the bare minimum- I believe that Angela and JetBlue Airlines may just be the final frontier, the Last of the Mohicans if you will, of superior customer service and they deserve a round of applause.
Angela also deserves a raise. I'm just saying.
Between Angela's efforts, the stewardess' making a fuss over Jax on both flights and offering help at every turn, to the much appreciated Direct TV complete with current episodes of the trashtastic Real Housewives of Orange County, I know who I'll be flying when I head back in a few weeks to meet my new nephew.