An Even Longer Journey

Annie started her first big trip very early in the morning, but she started her second big trip at nighttime. The family arrived at the airport around bedtime, and didn’t get on the airplane until the middle of the night. Annie’s mommy suggested to Annie that she might lie down and sleep in the airport, but Annie spent the time in the airport running around in circles and shrieking happily, which was way more fun. Daddy and Annie went and bought Annie a special treat, too. Annie picked a chocolate muffin. She nibbled the muffin now and then while she was in the airport and got crumbs all over herself, her chair, and the floor.

The airplane ride was very long. It was 15 hours. Annie decided not to eat or go to the bathroom while she was on the airplane. Mommy kept offering her food or water but Annie just said, “No thanks, I’m fine.”

Annie watched Frozen without the sound while she was on the airplane. She liked the beginning best, especially when the girls are playing together, and the song “Do you want to build a snowman?” She watched it many times, but didn’t like wearing headphones, so she had to imagine the words and the song.

Annie slept a little but not as much as she normally sleeps at nighttime. She was in the aisle seat and stuck her legs into the aisle, so Mommy kept having to pull them in, which Annie didn’t like very much.

When they woke up and it was kind of like morning, someone came and brought them breakfast, which Annie didn’t eat. She played with her toys instead. Somehow, though, an elbow went the wrong way and Daddy’s full cup of coffee was in his lap instead of on his tray. Annie considered this for a moment, and then went back to playing. Daddy was not very happy.

Although she did not eat very much on the airplane, Annie did enjoy sorting the rainbow Goldfish from Grandma Mary. (Only the classic Goldfish were acceptable.)

Annie was a brave, strong girl on the airplane, but after that first airplane ride she was tired and wished the trip was over. The family had to run through the airport because their plane was late, and Annie was too tired to run. She wanted to just stand still, and it made her sad when Mommy kept telling her to keep moving. She cried a little bit.  Sometimes Mommy or Daddy had to carry her. And then she saw an escalator, which was the first fun thing she had seen in a long time, but Mommy and Daddy didn’t let her ride it. Mommy promised that if Annie was a good girl she would get to go back and ride the escalator. But they were late, so Mommy and Annie had to run back and ride the escalator very, very quickly so they could get on the second airplane.

The second airplane ride was okay for Annie, less so for Cora. Annie played with her Barbie on the airplane. She took Barbie’s dress off, then put it back on, then took it off, and then put it back on again, and explained to Mommy this was to cover Barbie’s nipples.  Mommy pointed out that Barbie didn’t have any nipples. Annie did not bother to answer, because of course Barbie had nipples. Barbie then practiced going to the bathroom, using the tray table cup holder as a toilet. Mommy was worried that there was something wrong with Barbie’s tummy, based on the number of times she had to run to the toilet. Annie, using a condescending paternalistic tone, encouraged Barbie to hold it and not have an accident in her diaper. Then, when Barbie was finally done, Annie told her it was time for breakfast. “Sit in your high chair, Barbie!” she commanded, gently but firmly.

         “But high chairs are for babies!” said Barbie in a high-pitched voice that sounded like Annie’s voice.

         “Sometimes big kids sit in high chairs,” said Annie in her paternalistic voice.

         Barbie sighed. “Okay, mom,” she said resignedly, in her Annie-like voice.

When she got off the airplane she was confused but excited.

“Where are we?” she asked.

“New Zealand!” her parents told her, sounding very happy.

“Where are the toys?” she asked immediately, looking around excitedly.

But there were no toys, and it was just an airport full of too many people moving too quickly, and Annie was tired. It was hard to pull her suitcase and wear her backpack and as she stumbled through the airport, Annie started to feel sad and overwhelmed. Mommy kept telling her to stop crying and hold it together until they got to their new home. Annie tried her best but it was very, very hard for her to do this. The emotions were so strong, and she was just so tired.

They met a nice lady named Fiona who had come to pick them up. “Where are the sheep?” Annie asked immediately. There were no sheep in the airport either, but Fiona told Annie that there were sheep, and cows, and other animals near her new home.

Annie fell asleep as soon as she was in Fiona’s car.  She would have liked to keep sleeping, and sleeping, and sleeping, but Fiona had to leave so Mommy had to lift her out of her car seat and carry her inside. Annie started to cry. Mommy put her on a couch. Annie started to cry harder. She was feeling so sad and so upset inside she couldn’t even find words to use. Daddy kept talking excitedly about seeing the new house, but Annie didn’t want to see a new house. Mommy tried to give Annie a hug, but Annie curled away from her, and then when Mommy still tried to hug Annie, Annie swatted at her mother and started to scream and sob. Her mother tried to talk to her, but Annie couldn’t understand anything. She felt like the world was collapsing. She curled into the corner of the couch and screamed and sobbed and cried and cried and cried. Her parents kept trying to comfort her but she kicked at them and tried to hit them when they got close, so they stopped and let her cry. It was like her heart was breaking. It took a long time before she was able to stop.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *