Last night I picked up the kids from daycare and headed in the direction of the airport. We were picking daddy up from his week-long trip. Just before leaving work, I had checked the arrivals page on the airport website to make sure his flight was still on schedule. Nope. But only a delay of about 20 minutes. I could work with that.
I told the kids that we were going to stop at a McDonald’s for supper before we went to get daddy.
Does it have a playground?
Rush hour traffic was slow and my happy kids descended into the screaming pit of hellish madness. With nowhere to easily pull off the road, I joined them in the screaming pit in an effort to pull them back out. Threats were made, “I hate you’s” were declared, and slowly order was restored.
When we got into the McDonald’s playland it was like my demon spawn had been magically replaced by tiny angels of goodness and love from heaven above. I ate fries and basked in parental superiority, fueled by siblings playing fabulously together. The kids were having such a great time that I could barely convince them to come down so we could go get daddy.
They finally descended from the heights of playland with a diaper full of poop (3yo) and a bladder ready to explode (4yo). Before we could go anywhere, we had to address the toileting issues.
I herded them back out to the minivan and we got back on the road. They finally consented to eat since they had nothing else to do while strapped in their seats.
We got to the airport and rushed in, expecting to see daddy sitting next to his bags, playing Risk on his iPhone. Instead, the airport was nearly deserted. As the kids made a full speed beeline to the 4 arcade machines in the corner by the vending machines, I took a quick look at the arrivals screen.
Damn it all to hell! Stupid effing airlines!
Somehow I had another half hour to kill before his flight was now due to arrive. We “played” the arcade games until they got bored, because I refuse to waste good money on the damn things. We spent at least 5 minutes by the water fountain. We spent another 5 minutes poking our fingers into the waterfall of the White Spot sign. We spent another 5 minutes looking out the windows at the airplanes.
Then the kids decided they needed a snack. So we headed towards the Tim Hortons, stopping again at the water fountain and the White Spot sign. After selecting our tim bits, dealing with the whining resulting from the kid’s decision that they no longer wanted the tim bits I had just purchased, we wandered from table to table selecting and rejecting seats until the kids finally found the perfect place to snack.
They devoured their snack in seconds, making a huge mess of crumbs, and making a trip to the bathroom a dire necessity. On the way over to the bathroom we stopped again at the water fountain and the White Spot sign. By the time we made it over to the bathroom, daddy had snuck up behind us.
When we finally made it home, it was time to get the kids to bed.
This morning, daddy hopped in a cab and headed to Vancouver for 2 days and the children descended back into the screaming pit of hellish madness. Only to miraculously turn from demon spawn back into tiny angels of goodness and love from heaven above, just in time to arrive at daycare.
This parenting thing can be such a roller-coaster. You know, one of those really old ones that is no longer safe and you’re risking your life by getting on.