Things I have Lost While Traveling

This article which is a result of me losing many things while shifting and packing and suffering some minor heart breaks. It was featured on Pink Pangea which is an international magazine for women travelers. Read on….

Traveling requires that you carry a small part of yourself in your bag. Your clothes, your toothbrush, comb, favorite sweater, that cute pair of earrings, shoes and the list can go on. If you are a man maybe you might have a shorter list and if you a traveling family like mine then that list would include your baby’s favorite toy, night time story book, diapers, sippy cup and whole lot of other things that you can fit inside the airline mandated 22 kgs.

These lists of things hold more meaning when you are shifting between cities or countries after having lived there for a while. You will be hard pressed to decide what you should take and what you should leave behind unless you are wealthy enough to ship your stuff back and forth every time. It is the nature of the capitalistic human to collect things in whatever space we occupy. The amount of the things collected only come to light when it is time to move again. Read more….

 

Two bags and a baby

   
 I am a travelling young mother of a cute and happy 10 month old. We live a nomadic style of life because of the nature of our job. Also, we love to travel and we want to stay together as a family.We have been to four countries and a number of cities as a family in the last 10 months though the packing and re packing can become tedious, the travel itself has been some untold amounts of fun. The first three months of my new born with the colic and feeding schedule, we did not venture out much. Though we did take  short weekend getaway’s with a car loaded with necessities for the baby like the stroller, bath tub, crib, toys and other such things.

As we started travelling more and further away, carrying so much stuff became impractical. The airlines baggage allowances made it near impossible. Also a realization dawned on us that our baby came to us naked and we kept plying him with material stuff he just does not need. We buy him an expensive toy and he would much rather play with a spoon. Downsizing is key when it comes to travelling with a baby, carry only half of what you think you might require. A suitcase full of my clothes and toiletries, a suitcase of his clothes, baby shampoo, diapers and cream, blanket, 2 toys, a wrap and a stroller and we are set for our next adventure.

In my experience so far, flying with a baby is not the nightmarish experience it is often made out to be. That said, my baby might just prove me wrong the next time we take a flight. So far I have kept my baby busy with the magazines and a few nursery rhyme videos which work as distraction. The umpteen number of papers and cards one finds in the seat pocket also help. We have mostly flown during his sleep time so as long as he gets his milk and gets to sleep nuzzled on me, he has been a happy camper.

Food is a major worry when changing continents and countries. The simple rule of thumb I have followed is to uncomplicate. Before my baby started solids, carrying food was not an issue as all I had to do was pop a boob. But after we began solids we have our trusted instant baby cereal as part of our arsenal. The rest of the food we have bought locally like fresh fruits. Once my baby started expressing interest in the food we eat, I prefer to give him the less spicy version of whatever we are eating. The only thing we have been strict about is boiling the water he drinks wherever we are.

What I have found in my travels is that hotels and staff are very accommodating for our unique baby needs like washing his baby bowls and letting me pick out my baby’s lunch from the breakfast buffet. Ordering a kid meal is too much food for my baby. Hotels these days are accommodating young travelers with a baby chair and an in-room crib these days. A hand shower in the bathroom makes bath time simple without me having to tote a bath tub around.

Becoming a parent makes one less self conscious, so that’s always a plus. We don’t mind when certain people give us judgmental looks when they see us in a swanky restaurant with a sleepy baby in the stroller. I have found more number of helpful baby loving people than the former kind. Not all babies are equal, some might be more demanding or have different demands. Also every parenting style differs and matters. But travelling with a baby is possible and also lots of fun.