Last weekend we took our third road trip in about six weeks. If I had any dreams of writing a post called, “How to Travel with a Newborn,” THAT WAS DUMB. Unless the people of the internet have just been waiting for my “take the baby for a drive until she falls asleep and let her sleep in the car seat all night” trick.
We had a lot of fun, sleeping schedule aside. Both the girls are pretty good travelers, at least as far as the drive goes. Omaha is only three hours away, so we got there in time for an early dinner. Which was a good thing, since as it was, we had to wait 30 minutes to get a seat at the Old Market Spaghetti Works.
Now, don’t get me wrong. A 30-minute wait on a Friday night isn’t bad at all. And the weather was gorgeous. But during that 30-minute wait, we had the PLEASURE of a street performer. Also known as The Worst Magician I Have Ever Seen. Also known as The Magician That Annalyn Wanted to Watch for 30 Minutes.
Seriously, you guys. He did do one great trick, though – made my dollar disappear into his tip jar after making my daughter laugh. So there’s that.
There was also really good cheesy garlic bread and a waiter who thought my baby was cute, even though she got baby food all over the table. And he also conveniently brought the extra napkins I asked for RIGHT BEFORE Annalyn dumped orange Hi-C all over me. Me . . . and my brand-new white shorts.
Have I mentioned that I bought myself a pair of white shorts for the 4th of July? And that I have NEVER IN MY LIFE bought or worn a pair of white pants or shorts?
So, after surviving the worst magician ever and a Hi-C shower, we embarked on a journey to find fireworks. As it turned out, our hotel was not the Ritz and the guy at the desk was not a concierge. Or a guy who knew where to find fireworks. Luckily the internet was a bit more reliable than that guy.
We drove all the way across town, walked a good half mile (I don’t know that for sure. But it FELT like a half mile, so that matters, right?), and watched a fantastic fireworks show. That lasted about 10 minutes.
Doesn’t matter how short it was, though, because Annalyn was delighted. DEE-LIGHTED. She squealed and laughed so loud – and thanked us over and over for finding the fireworks. And all of sudden I forgot about my shorts getting tie-dyed with her Hi-C.
After all four of us stayed up past our bedtimes, we slept late on Saturday morning. As did every other family in our sold-out hotel with the free hot breakfast.
I know. You’re thinking, “Oh really, Mary? That’s FASCINATING. Tell me more about your very interesting hotel stay and breakfast.”
Look. I have my reasons for bringing this up. I bring this up because, well, there was an incident.
At the waffle maker.
Mark carried Adrienne down to the breakfast room, and I took Annalyn to the buffet line. We got plates and a bowl of sugary cereal for Annalyn (it was VACATION, okay?) (and a banana. I’m not totally irresponsible.). Then I headed over to the waffle maker, where I got in line.
We stood there patiently . . . politely . . . or so I thought. As the woman in front of me pried her waffle out of the iron and I stepped toward the machine, a man and his son walked up. He grabbed the non-stick spray out of my hand and started spraying the waffle maker. Then he asked me if I was next, I said I was, and he said he was after me.
Since he’d come out of nowhere and another woman waiting behind me the whole time I’d been there, I pointed to the lady behind me and said (POLITELY), “Actually, she was waiting.”
Well. That was when he got real riled up. Apparently HE had been waiting (ACROSS THE ROOM AT HIS TABLE), so HE was supposed to be next and now his little boy wasn’t going to get his waffle. But he kept spraying that waffle maker, so he could – and I quote – get me “all set up” for my waffle.
Apparently the social contract that I THOUGHT was the accepted norm in buffet lines was no longer in effect in that Omaha hotel. APPARENTLY the people in that room had come up with a pour your batter in a cup, set it on the counter like a placeholder and then sit down all the way across the room system.
But nobody told me that. So apparently . . . I cut in line and kept a little boy from getting his waffle Saturday morning.
You guys! I didn’t KNOW! I felt so bad. But also a little annoyed. I mean. How was I supposed to know? It’s not like his name was on that little cup of batter. Or the spot on the carpet WHERE I WAITED IN LINE. But I did feel bad. And confused. Is this how we do continental breakfast now?
No, really. Is it? I just need to know. If I missed the waffle memo, I need to know so I don’t deprive another little boy (and his angry father) of a timely waffle.
Because even though I’m no expert on road trips with babies, we’ve got another couple of trips planned for this summer. And I don’t want to cause another Waffle Incident!
After we recovered from the incident, we packed up and headed to the zoo. It was about one thousand percent humidity, but not too hot, thankfully. My calves would like me to mention that the Omaha Zoo – while just as awesome as everyone says – is FULL of hills. And somehow they manage to be ALL UPHILL.
But that’s beside the point. The zoo was a lot of fun. We saw tigers and leopards and wallabies and a sloth and lots of monkeys and some penguins. And after I made my whole family hike all the way across the park to see the sea lion training session – and Annalyn complained about how FAR it was and how BORING it was (before it started) and how she wanted to go back to the face painting booth – it ended up being her favorite part of the zoo. (Score one for Mom!)
So, in summary, we had a great Fourth of July weekend with a road trip to Omaha. Not enough sleep and more than enough sass from a certain six-year-old. But big picture, I’m glad we made the last-minute decision to take a mini-vacation. And remember – Magicians and waffle incidents, bad. Cheesy bread and fireworks and wallabies and sea lions and face painting, good.
How was YOUR weekend?