It’s not sightseeing from morning to night with a baby, it’s not the constant diaper changes, it’s not even dealing with a 101 degree fevered baby…travel days take the most energy out of us on The Great Escape Plan. Don’t get me wrong, like anyone who loves a vacation, the excitement, expectations and emotions you have the moment you first arrive to a new location is all there. For example, the first time we arrived to the port of Rhodes, Greece…we knew we were going to have a great time. Enter exhibit A, Sophia covered with chocolate and smiling.
But let me explain the back story. We arrived at 9 am to Rhodes. The night before–midnight to be precise–we waited at Santorini’s port for the ferry to take us to Rhodes. After boarding at 1 am, we took an all night cruise to the island. There were cabins you can purchase on board but since we are on a budget we did like the rest of the Greeks and tourists, find a comfy couch. We assembled a makeshift bed for Sophia and she slept through the night…no problem.
Sophia by far has grown by leaps and bounds during the trip. And I don’t just mean her size. She’s a true trooper when it comes to traveling. An eight hour ferry boat ride, waking up at 6 am to catch a boat/plane transfer, a four hour train trip through the middle of Italy…those are some examples and we have completed all those travel stages without much hassle. Here’s a great photo of her the day we arrived at Rhodes. After the boat ride, we took a swim and had some ice cream…then took a nap until night time.
And that’s the key…getting plenty of rest before and after the actual travel. Another instance was the trip from Greece to Italy. Now THAT was a marathon. Flight from a Greek island at 1 am (it was a Greek holiday so we paid half the price to fly out), arrive at Rome’s airport at 4 am, take a 30 min taxi from airport to Roma Termini train station, hour layover for train from Rome to Florence which was 3 hours by the way, finally arrive to Florence at 10:30 in the morning. Sophia only cried once when we were landing on the flight and it’s because the pressure woke her up and she was still sleepy and wasn’t aware to suck on her drink bottle (because that’s what you do for children on flights due to their ears not being able to pop from accumulated pressure in a change of altitude).
We found a supermarket and had lunch, showered, and crashed. The next day we did a full day walking around Florence and I ended up taking one of the best photos yet of Sophia and Mommy in front of Ponte Vecchio (the old bridge). The travel day though did take a lot out of us. But with a little sleep and TLC we have all managed to get back to Rome without any mayor issues. So here’s our scorecard so far: the islands of Santorini, Symi, Rhodes, and Kalymnos in Greece; Florence, Bologna, Pisa, Tuscany, Salerno, Amalfi Coast, and now Rome in Italy. I think we’re doing pretty good.
In all that time and locations, Sophia has only had two incidents of a 24 hr fever, mommy once, and daddy zilch (it’s all the wine that’s keeping me healthy…ha…ha…ha). This week Sophia goes in for her 15 month vaccinations. That’ll be quite interesting. We’ll let you know if this tops Travel Days as our biggest challenge yet. You be the judge.
~Roy De Jesus~