Ella’s just turned 10 months and we’re off on our third vacation as a travelling trio. Having tackled Turkey at 4 months and a long weekend in NYC at 8 months, we decided the third and final trip of Ella’s first year on earth would take us south to Curacao and Panama.
Why Curacao and Panama you ask? I’m glad you asked. After all, without these insightful and probing questions, how would I ever know what to write? We chose Curacao and Panama for two key reasons. First, having lived through the month of sleepless nights after returning from Turkey, we decided to try and go somewhere with little to no time change. That had us looking directly south, it being December in Canada, heading north wasn’t very appealing. Second, we eliminated countries with any major disease and altitude risks that are hard to manage with a baby. Then we taped a map to the dartboard and here we are.
Do all babies suck at packing?
I’m not sure if it’s a baby thing, but Ella sure does suck at packing light. Katy and I were getting pretty good at packing light. My personal best was probably 3 weeks in South America with a gym bag, including the supplies to tend to the open wound that was the plate in my shoulder. Ella, well, let’s just say she has some work to do. Though she weighs about 10% of what I do, she probably requires about 3x as much stuff.
That said, we could travel with less, but as part of the thinking behind this trip was to stay in just two places for longer periods of time, we felt we could bring extra stuff, like a folding stroller, which has turned out to be useful. We also didn’t really need to bring diapers, wipes, etc. as we could have bought them here, but it seemed safer just to bring them. The good news is, with every poo, our bags for the trip home get a little lighter.
Ella learned little from her previous trips
You would think that travelling should get easier with each trip. After all, we learned things the first time around, didn’t we? Sure, we learned all kinds of things that would have been useful if we had brought someone else’s 4 month old with us this time. Since that would be kidnaping, and we would have needed a babysitter for Ella, we brought her instead and she’s nothing like a 4 month old.
Exhibit A: The flight. On the flight to Turkey, Ella slept most of the way in the little bassinet. To her credit Ella did sleep a little on this flight, but really she wanted to be walking up and down the aisle the whole time. Fortunately, we had paid the extra $45 per person to get the bulk head seats, which WestJet calls “plus”, presumably to make you feel a little better about the fee. This meant that we had a little pen Ella could wander around in. The upside of her busyness was that we never felt tempted to pay for the movies.
Exhibit B: Restaurants. In Turkey, one thing we learned was the beauty of bench seating. With a bench, we could lie Ella down and she would… well, just lie there. This time however, that doesn’t work quite as well. Not only will she not lie still, but she wants a seat at the table. She essentially needs to be eating or walking at all times. Fortunately, she eats a lot for such a small person.
Holy Hades it’s hot here
It turns out that the weather network was not lying, at least about the heat. It is hot and humid here. It’s 10am as I write this on our veranda and it’s currently 28 degrees celcius and feels like 40. The less reliable part of the forecast is the rain. It’s pretty much always sunny with a chance of thunderstorms. I think that’s just lazy. In fact, looking at the 14 day trend (below), I think I might just become a meteorologist here. Job requirements? Owning a ruler.
What’s next? Sunscreen. Swimming and lots of water. Stay tuned.