We finally boarded the plane, and the person I sat next to was really nice. I was relieved. We took off on time, and the captain announced that we would be arriving in California earlier than scheduled. I started reading Julie & Julia, resting assured after the captain also announced that we would be hitting little to no turbulence, and had already gotten through a good four chapters, when the screeching started. A little boy (13 months, as his ignorant mother proudly proclaimed at the end of the flight) decided that it would be a grand old time if he screeched at the loudest and highest levels that his little vocal chords and lungs would allow, intermittently throughout the whole flight. The ignoramus that birthed him only shooshed him to try to quiet him, and left him in his carseat while she slept. This kid was annoying. I do feel a little bad berating him on a blog, but I have no tolerance for lack of parenting. The child would play with his transformer for a few minutes, then throw it in the aisle, toss his blanket, then toss his bottle. The mother had the audacity to actually ask me to get out of my seat and get his bottle for her, which wouldn't have been an issue, had she actually coddled her child during the flight. Needless to say, after a good 4 hours, the angry man sitting in front of them (who had tried to be patient even when his seat was being pounded from behind by the act of said 1-year old trying to jam his tray back into the upright position) turned around and told the kid to cut it out. At this point, the mother, now quite horrified that someone would *gasp* scold her child, deftly scooped up her kid and held him to quiet him down. Eureeka! He stopped shrieking when his mother actually held him! I think she deserves the mother of the year award.
We also experienced moderate turbulance, which made my stomach a little queasy at times. When I arrived at the airport, my sister wasn't there, because he bus was running late, so I got off the plane, grabbed my luggage, and boarded the shuttle to the car rental place. I had to hold back the tears as I was riding on the shuttle bus, because I was so completely frustrated that nothing was going well for my first time traveling alone. After waiting in a short line, I paid for my rental, and headed over to the garage to get my car, complete with my best angry face. I don't know if it was my angry face, or the universe just saying, "Ok, ok, we've given her enough shit for today," but here's the silver lining in it all: by the time I got to the car rental place, there were no more available "Intermediate" sized cars, besides a Chevy Cobalt, so I was upgraded to a Prius for only $5 more a day (when it usually would have cost an extra $80/day). Bonus. So, it wasn't a complete bust, but it definitely wasn't a fairytale like I had expected it to be.
I can't wait to do it all over again! :o)