Monday, December 12, 2011

Monday Musings

When they (there they are again) say, "boy, she really packed on the weight" - how come mine is in jiggly plastic carry-ons, and not in hard-sided American Tourister luggage?  Do they even make hard-sided American Tourister luggage anymore?  Is it even cool to be seen with an actual suitcase?  Do the airlines charge you triple for actual suitcases?  You can tell it's been a while since I've traveled.

I used to love to travel by air.  It was an event - E.V.E.N.T.  Everyone spiffed up, all spit-shined clean and coiffed for a trip on an airplane.  No jeans, no pants-down-to-your-knees...

Segue - how on God's Green Earth can those homeboys keep their pants from pooling around their giant sneakers with every other step?  What if they have to hurry along?  And, do we want to see their undies?  I think, generally, NOT.

I'm back.  You could sit comfortably in your seat in those days.  Your knees were not up to your chin.  There were no yowling babies - it was too expensive to bring the whole family.  Plus, I do believe that people weren't in the habit of hauling mere infants all over the place just days after birth.  You got a free:  blanket, pillow, meal, beverage.  It was just lovely.  The last time I flew, I flew overseas to attend the wedding of a very dear friend to the love of her life.  Given that the last time I flew was after the world was turned on its ear, the security was amazing.  Bags were thoroughly searched, as was I.  We were shuffled through long lines, herded onto a plane that had been reduced to a narrow aisle lined on both sides with hundreds of tiny seats.  I half expected to see Temple Grandin waiting for us as we boarded.  We were "served" by an overworked, unhappy, cranky bunch of flight attendants, and my headphones didn't work.  Ack.  The best part was landing in Amsterdam and getting on the train to Eindhoven and seeing Els when I alit.  The return was just as grim, plus there was the added bonus of a drooling, snoring drunken seat-mate to contend with.

Enough of that.  Let's do a little tip-toeing through my childhood memories, okeydokey?  We did not fly anywhere.  We drove.  My parents were of the thought that all car trips should begin before daylight.  This added to the excitement - the car had been packed the night before.  We were awakened in the dark and bundled off into the car in our pajamas.  The car was almost always a Dodge.  With spectacular tail fins.  It was BIG.  We slept through the first hours of our trips - and that was probably the only peace and quiet my parents got on the trip.  The rest of the time was non-stop jabbering (by yourstruly), punctuated with pleas to stop (we learned to hold our water - my father didn't believe in stopping for anything but gas), and rousing games of License Plates, I Spy, and 99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall (which we thought was a daring, wicked song because it was

I still sing in the car.  An while vacuuming.  And to the dogs, cats, chickens, sheep, and goats.  The dogs and goats are particularly moved by my vocalizing, although it worries Bernie if I get too wound up in a rendition of an Aretha Franklin song.  Are you a closet singer?


Sylvia said...

Probably if you toted one of those heavy Samsonites now, you would pay a mini fortune for the weight.
Love your Temple Grandin comment!

Carolyn said...

Ok, now I'm going to have to Google Temple Grandin.

I also remember the pre-dawn pack-the-kids-into-the-car vacations and road trips. I think it's mandatory that one leave while the kiddos are still sleepy-eyed and dawn is still an hour away.

As for singing; I have a horrible voice, but it doesn't seem to bother the animals or Rhiannon (yet, as I don't think she can comprehend "off key" yet).

Mama Pea said...

Your description of flying actually made me cringe. It's something I hope I never have to do again. I'd rather buy a new pair of hiking boots and walk.

P.S. I am NOT a closet singer. If I were the clothes would absolutely shrivel up and die. Yes, it's that bad.

Jenyfer Matthews said...

The way they treat luggage on airlines, a hard sided suitcase would be more sensible for your STUFF, but with all the weight restrictions those suitcases are so much heavier, you'd be able to bring less STUFF. I wonder how long until the airlines just expect us to travel with nothing, and buy everything when we get there? I saw a woman in UPS the other day inquiring about their advertisement to ship your luggage ahead of you. Really? Surely it is no cost savings over just paying to check a bag??

I have traveled back and forth across the world with babies and children and mine were always great - because I never let them kick seats, stare at people over the seats, or run in the aisles. You have to train them right - like dogs :)

Can't say I am missing the long distance travel just yet. I am contemplating a few trips in the next couple of months and they are all going to be by car!

Jane @ Hard Work Homestead said...

Wow that is the second Temple Grandin reference I heard in a week. And the first time was on one of those 1/2 hour nighttime TV comedies that are geared toward 15-25yr old city slickers and are almost unwatchable. I wondered how many people even caught her name. Ole Temple is going mainstream, and I think she would be more interested in your sheep shed than that TV show:)

Sue said...

A closet singer--yes!
OMG-I have the worst voice EVER. And I LOVE LOVE LOVE to bring it out while making lasagna or stuffed shells listening to Andrea Bocelli's 'Miserere' as loud as my crappy old cd player will blast it. I might note--I am NOT a tenor, and I do NOT know Italian.
Needless to say, we don't have mice.

Pioneer Woman at Heart said...

Interesting musings. Airline travel has definitely changed over the years.

hoosier girl said...

My chickens and goats are very fond of my rendition of old show tunes. The rest of the world will never know what they are missing LOL!

dr momi said...

Well, you reminded me all over again why I hate flying. I am a closet car singer. .....only when the windows are up.

Loved Sue's comment ...."needless to say, no mice". Too funny.

The Apple Pie Gal said...

Those pants, I am told, make use of themselves. Believe it or not, cops love them. A fool running with those on is soon a fool caught! If they all start wearing tights, cops would have to set the donuts down or we'd all be in big trouble :)

Susan said...

Sylvie - Yes, those were the days when you could check two bags! Now they've traded luggage for squeezing more people onboard.

Carolyn Renee - I would, actually, much rather have Temple Grandin waiting for me than, say, Jack Kevorkian.

Mama Pea - You and me, both. I didn't say I had a GOOD voice - I can clear the room of cats within seconds.

Jenyfer - I think that infants have a hard time in planes because of the shifting air pressure - it can hurt! As far as children in planes, it is fine if they are not as you described - unfortunately, that is more than norm than not. And you're trapped!

Jane - I have a lot of respect for her. She is quite amazing. And that's another reason I'm glad I do NOT watch television.

Susan said...

Sue - OMG~ I should have swallowed that coffee before I read your comment! Maybe I should teach the cats how to sing? I'm glad I'm not the only 'diva' here - I love to soar with the arias. "Soar" being a relative term here.

Kristina - Yes, it's definitely not what it used to be. I'd much rather travel by horseback.

Hoosier Girl - That's a great idea. Somehow, I think that Show Tunes and poultry is a great match. I'm stuck on Joni Mitchell songs right now - time for a change.

Dr Momi - Unfortunately for those sitting beside me at the light, I sing whether my windows are up or down.

APG - Oh, the vision of those homeboys in tights almost did me in! I think a lot of the police I see could use a month or five of the no-donut diet.

Chicken Mama said...

Find out what it means to me.
Take care, TCB!

Sockittome,sockittome,sockittome, sockittome . . . !

Why, yes, I do sing. Probably out of the closet, too. Matter of fact, as I was driving the last 2 miles of my snowy, slippery road in the dark, dark last night (while hot flashing), I had the window rolled all the way down and was belting out the full-volume Santana at the top of my lungs! I can ONLY imagine what a wintertime camper might have thought if I'd whizzed by his campsite - theoretically in "the middle of nowhere"! Ha!

Tom Stewart said...

You bet! But a truck singer. What else is there to do in that 1 1/2 hour drive to work each day? And with all the holiday music on the radio, How can I not?

The family car trips were always in Aug. We would go to "KINGS CANYON NAT. PARK" for a couple weeks camping. Us 6 kids would drive our Dad crazy! If we got to loud and get on his nerves, He would use our favorate line " Quite down, You do not want me to stop this car!" We would laugh until we drove him nuts. But he never stopped the car!

Candy C. said...

Ah, the car trips! My dad ALWAYS had us in the car by 4 AM!!
I am so very glad I did not have a mouthful of tea when I read Mama Pea's comment about being a closet singer!! :)
I love to sing; unfortunately, I can't carry a tune in a bucket with a lid on it! Doesn't stop me from singing to the goat while I'm milking her though. She's a captive audience! ;-)

Susan said...

CM - I bet that was a mind-bending moment for your winter camper. I see we follow the same song sheets ;-)

Tom - Our poor fathers! All those empty, frustrated threats - we KNEW he would never stop!

Candy - Yes - I learned the hard way, while reading Sue's comment, that I keep all hot beverages at a safe distance! I think that miling and singing goes hand in hand - there is something so soothing about both.

Ngo Family Farm said...

That is too funny! Your car trips sound EXACTLY like mine when I was a kid! In fact, I have never been on an airplane with my parents, and didn't travel by air until I was almost an adult.

Erin said...

We take all trips by car, but only due to the cost. If we flew we'd have to board the dogs, rent a car, etc and it gets way too expensive! I guess flying in the military for so many years where you just sat on the floor of an aircraft for 10 hours makes my expectations pretty low for commercial flight because it doesn't bother me LOL