I’m watching one of Louis C.K.’s live shows on Netflix, and he’s doing this bit about a time he went to the airport.
For those of you who don’t know, my parents are divorced. They’d been divorced ever since I was 5 years old, and when my mom’s side of the family decided to relocate from Minnesota to Arizona, she went with them. I think I was 7, by that time.
Because of child custody laws or some such thing, three times a year, I had to visit my dad, my stepmom, and my stepsister. Naturally, my little sister and I did this by flying there. By ourselves. (it was really hard for my mom, but it got easier as we got older)
Now, a few years ago, my little sister and I (much older; I was an adult and I THINK she was a teenager) got seated next to a 6-year-old kid, whose family was an aisle across from us. His mom told us “If he talks too much, just tell him to be quiet.”
He DID talk quite a bit…but only because he had NOTHING to entertain himself. So you all know, it takes just under 3 hours to get from Minnesota to Arizona or vice versa.
Little Sister and I felt SO AWFUL for this kid; he had NOTHING to entertain himself for that amount of time! I gave him pages from my sketchbook for him to draw on, I remember, and my sister talked to him a lot. (his family didn’t even thank us for entertaining their son for 3 hours, which we DIDN’T HAVE TO DO)
Thing is, when Mom tearfully sent me and my little sister to our dad’s when I was 8 and she was 5, she packed our little backpacks FULL of things to keep us entertained for 3 hours, and THEN some.
Seeing Louis C.K.’s bit reminded me I just wanted to tell this story. But more than that, I wanted to give some advice.
For any parents who might be following me who’ll have to take their children flying on a plane: PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE bring along things to entertain your children! You can’t really expect them to just sleep for 3 hours or more! They will be bored to tears otherwise!