Saturday, December 3, 2011

Maki Family Vacation Part 2

Family Vaca part 2

I made sure to follow the same advice I give my clients; go down the night before your flight to ensure an easy, stress free start of your vacation. We stayed at the beautiful and most convenient, Crowne Plaza MOA. The bell men, concierge and front desk staff all made us feel extremely welcomed as we had a quick check in. The weather was quite brisk so we diverted our game plan from enjoying the outdoor Holidazzle Parade to staying indoors and having dinner at The Rainforest Cafe at the Mall of America. The kids had fun watching the live fish in the many aquariums and felt the rumblings of a thunderstorm in the jungle. A quick stop at the book store rounded out our evening before retiring to an early flight Upon our return to the hotel, we even had people on the shuttle whom we knew! It is a small world after all! They were down on a bus trip to shop. In my book, that paled in comparison to our upcoming adventure to Paradise! As we settled into our soft cuddly beds, the sound of the MN Wild Hockey game on tv put us all to sleep. The paper said they won/lost but we were fast asleep dreaming of ocean breezes and fruity umbrella drinks!

The sound of the 4:00am alarm never sounded so sweet! We all scurried around the hotel room preparing our bodies, bags and otherwise for our flight. A smooth check out followed by the $1.75 pack of gum purchase and swiftly we were swept away to the airport. On our shuttle, we had chatty Delta flight attendants and pilots who seemed just as excited to be going to work as we were to be going on vacation. Once inside the terminal we made the game plan to stick together like a Maki Train; Dad in front, kids in middle, followed by Mom, the caboose. My biggest fear of looking like a traveling circus quickly evaporated when I realized the kids were two years older than the last trip so they were much more mature and the fact the airport was relatively empty helped tremendously. Remember, I generally travel alone, so the idea of having to keep track of 3 children put my Mamma Bear senses on high alert! As Dad began his way through security, disrobing himself bit by bit,
I reminded the kids to take their backpacks and put them in the bins. Thankfully TSA allows kids under 12 to keep their shoes on, as that was one less hoop to jump through. Finally, Mama Bear, the caboose, was ready to go. As I filled my bin with my purse, coat and 12 pounds of jewelry, I ultimately was the one who held up the line as I broke the cardinal rule: I didn't declare my laptop!! The astute TSA agent schooled me by showing me how simple it was for me to take the laptop out of the case and put it in a separate bin. Knowing they have about as much authority as God Himself, I politely thanked him for the reminder and promised I'd never make that mistake again. Can you say, Epic Fail?!?!

So as we navigate our way to our gate in one of the largest domestic airports, can you believe I ran into a girl I went to high school with, two couples I booked for their Honeymoon and I received an email from a rep from the Jamaican Tourist Board who was on our same flight! Sing with me, " it's a small world afterall..."

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