Peeper and I are in Texas for our belated extended-family Christmas celebration, and we didn't get here without some trials.
I waited a bit too long to book our flights, so we didn't leave until 4 pm, and were due to get in to the local-to-my-family airport around 9 pm, via Dallas.
Our flight out of Baltimore was running a bit late, but that didn't bother Peeper too much.
When we got to Dallas, we were a smidge behind, so we rushed over to our departing gate, where we learned that our second flight was delayed as well, and wasn't supposed to leave until around 9 pm.
After actually speaking to our pilot, who happened to be standing there, and confirming that the flight would be going, as soon as the plane that was about to leave for Houston came back, we went and got some dinner, and planned to hang out for a while.
Peeper had spotted a play area, so we went there, and she played while I monitored our flight status online and Facebooked updates to LadyKay, to be passed on to the Anonyparents. Peeper was having a blast, running around the play area, climbing on things and jumping off, "teaching the little ones" how to play, and later, watching some cartoon that involved a lot of fighting and shooting and blowing up thing and calling the enemy things like, "You Devils!"
Great. I explained to her that I had no control over this TV, but that this was not a show that she would be allowed to watch. This little speech came after I heard her exclaim to no one in particular that, "I love this show!"
While running and playing, she was doing a lot of coughing - that damn asthma thing. I had her slow down for a bit, and take a break to get it under control, and it kind of came and went.
Finally, it was about half an hour until time to board our plane, so I called her over and had her sit down on the couch to get her shoes on. She was coughing again, and I asked if she was okay. She said she was, even though she was gagging about.
Are you sure? I'm okay.
Yeah. Not so much.
More gagging, and then she threw up all over herself. Remember how we'd just had dinner? Yeah.
As she sat there, covered in her own vomit, she asked me, pitifully, "Are you going to tell somebody?"
I don't know!
I looked around, and saw a woman dusting some furniture, so I went over and told her (across a language barrier, I'm pretty sure) what had happened, and she said she'd be there in just a minute.
I went back to Peeper and told her, "Don't move. I'm going to run get some paper towels. Don't worry, nobody will steal you like this."
By the time I came back from the bathroom with not-even-close-to-enough paper towels, the custodian was there with a towel. Peeper told me later that, "She asked me, 'Are you okay?'" (I tipped this woman ten dollars when we left.)
I stripped her down to her panties, stuffed the gross clothes into the wet bag, and carried her to the bathroom to try to clean her up. As I was wiping her down, she said, "This is the worst thing!" and "I'm sorry this happened."
Oh, no, no, baby. I am so sorry.
I got her wiped off, and into some clean panties and pants and . . . nope, that's it. I hadn't brought a clean shirt. I couldn't think of anything else to do but to hope like hell we could find a store open, and if not, just take her on the plane like that and ask for a blanket when we get on board.
As we walked to our gate, we passed one closed store after another, just taunting us with there racks and racks of shirts, behind those metal gates.
Finally, we came to one that only had their gate half way down, so I grabbed Peeper, ducked under the gate, and said, "Please help me." I explained what had happened, and asked if they could please sell me a shirt.
There were three women working behind the counter. One started in with, "Well, I don't know how we could do that . . . ." (Of course, after tipping the custodian, I no longer had enough cash for a shirt, so I would have to use a debit card.) Then one of the other women said, "I haven't closed out my register yet."
So, we picked out the smallest shirt they had, and put it on her, and hurried off to our gate, and waiting for our turn to board.
Luckily, this was a small plane with only two seats on a row, so nobody had to sit by us, because we were pretty stinky.
She was asleep before we even took off, and I had to wake her up when we landed.
Last trip, she was happy to sit in the car with Grandma while I waited for our bag (it's a very, very small airport), but this time, she was having none of that hanging-out-with-Grandpa business. Instead, she sat in my lap and whined until the bag came out, and then whined all the way to the house.
We didn't even stop to talk to Grandma on the way in, just went straight into the shower, and then to bed.
We are glad to be here, and are looking forward to our visit, but I could think of better ways to start it off.