Thursday, June 26, 2014

Navigating the Caribbean with Twins

While on a seven day cruise with the family, I was rewarded with a beach free day. (I hate sand!) It was my wife's present for my birthday, along with a spa visit for a shave and facial.
        The logistics seemed easy enough. Step one, wake up and dress twins. This task was relatively simple seeing that I am a Stay-at-Home dad to my twins and an older singleton, I do this daily. With them freshened and ready for the day, we tackled step two, breakfast with the twins. This is easier said than done.  On a cruise ship this can be an event, almost like dining out... I strapped them in the stroller and set out with a plan and executed that plan flawlessly. Okay I'll admit the dining room staff helped, they moved chairs for me and sliced the banana I asked for. Easy as pie you might say. With the toughest part of the morning completed, we headed to the pier. We rode the elevator down and exited on deck one for the gangway. On exiting the elevator my daughter proclaimed, "Nana!", which is what she calls my wife. I got off the boat with the twins at the same time as my wife got off the ship with our teenage niece and 3 year old! I was feeling pretty kick ass right about now. They had a 45 minute head start. When we got to the pier we posed as a family with a pirate for a photograph and then proceeded to the shops.

          I was looking forward to doing some shopping but was disappointed with the shops. There was very little room to navigate a double stroller and only a few shops were open and ready for customers.  Instead of shopping, I  eagerly pushed the twins around looking at the sights. However, it was a dreary day in the beautiful island of St. Martin. Although there was an overcast, it was already stifling hot and I was starting to bead with sweat. Then the sky began to open it's gates and a slight drizzle came down. So instead of waiting around for the shops to open and get soaked, we trudged back to the ship.
       We navigated through the security checkpoint back onto the pier and learned the nice local lady checking our "Sea-pass" cards was a twin. As you know, when you have twins everyone has their own twin story. We passed Mommy again, with a slight tantrum, and then headed back towards the ship and up the ramp. Our cards were scanned and then I spotted my new "nightmare"; the metal detector and bag x-ray machine.

I was in my own private twin hell and wondering how long it would last. What should take seconds  can take minutes and seem like hours when it comes to handling twins. I looked pitifully at the ship crew and dropped my head to stare at the floor for a second. I slowly raised my head and said, "I have to take them out, don't I?" My query was met with a resounding yes and I began the epic task. I unbuckled them and removed the first twin, my daughter, who is the patient one. I was still perplexed on what to do about her brother, the runner and climber, and the folding of the stroller.  I went for it in a quick dash. I let go of my daughter's hand and quickly evacuated my son from the confines of the stroller. In no time at all, my daughter darted for the X-ray machine. Of course, they automatically went in opposite directions. As I folded the stroller my son darted towards the pier while my daughter ran towards the innards of the ship. I quickly herded them again and readied myself to do the next step. I placed the stroller on the conveyor and walked them through the machine. I noticed a small line forming and hurried the stroller on the belt while my twins took off in opposite directions, once again. While I captured the runaway toddlers a large line was beginning to form behind me.

Finally, I walked my twins through the metal detector. We made it!  The worst was over... Then I looked at the stroller and realized I had to get them back in.

1 comment:

  1. Brilliant post. I'm glad I'm not the only one who talks about 'herding' my children. Last year I had difficulties when we travelled to Germany. My youngest son run ahead at the airport metal detector and got stopped by a burly German security guard who spoke no English. To everyone's amazement he got my son to stand on one leg and pat his belly while he waited for me!