We are getting closer and closer to our move, it’s really unbelievable. Our management team was informed about our decision, Biscuit’s flight is booked and her clearance is nearly done. There are only bits and pieces left, and on the 19th of February we start a new chapter of our life!
But it wouldn’t be all nice and smooth without Momzilla flying to Ireland to help us with the move – and by “help us” I mean getting in the way and complaining about what things we’re talking, and pointing out how would she do things differently than I did. Although, to be fair she always brings me plenty of content with her colourful personality, and she cooks really well so until the move I’m pretty much done with house chords. I can fully focus on the move, job transition, assignments and all the tedious stuff.
One of the things I love about Momzilla’s visits is that she’s a breath of fresh air to our boring and steady Irish lives. Don’t get me wrong, I still think it’s painful to watch a 32 year old grown up man to argue with his mother over not wearing socks at home, but if it wasn’t for her we would just live our work – you probably know by now we just couldn’t get used to Irish lifestyle.
With each of Momzilla’s visits – in the US, Ireland or Poland – we always had weird things happening to us: car accident, car breaking down, airplane doors didn’t want to open and her connection was missed… For a 62 year old she has quite adventurous life.
She had her share of flight experience, yet she still does things she shouldn’t and that are giving Sing and myself heart attacks.
Here’s a list of things you shouldn’t do while travelling, but yet Momzilla still does them (kind of Travelling Mythbusters)!
- Do not take things from strangers
This is the basic principle parents teach their kids: do not take any sweets or other items from strangers. It can harm you. It’s even worse when it comes to airports – how many times you heard of someone bringing iPhone on behalf of a friend to some family member and then it turned out to be drug smuggling? (True story: click here ). Well, Momzilla thought it’s fine to take sweets from a ‘Nice gentleman flying to XXX’. It could have been drugs, it could be something that would knock her out, she could have been kidnapped. SHE DOESN’T EVEN LIKES SWEETS. To make matters worse, once she showed these to us she still insisted on eating them.
I’m just so glad nothing bad happened, but I had my maternal instinct kicking in and nearly yelled at her for being so irresponsible!
Good people can’t take vegetables through security check, otherwise if it’s in their genes I would also have a problem with Sing.
- Do not travel without travel insurance
The word ‘Insurance’ in Chan’s dictionary stands for ‘Money spent on asking fortune to be bad’. On the other hand, my parents like to insure everything – just in case. Especially in terms of health, but that’s mostly due my dad’s condition. We know how much money a foreign treatment can cost.
Momzilla is not completely healthy, nothing life threatening, but still serious, yet she insist on not getting insurance as she believes it will basically curse her and the moment she signs the policy, she will get hit by a car or encounter a vicious Biscuit the cat who will purr her to death.
If you live in European Union, make sure you get your health card so you can be covered in all the EU countries. I’m still looking for my Hong Kong insurance, in case you have any recommendations!
- Do not exchange your currency at the airports.
This was is bit ambiguous, as Momzilla rarely does it – the problem is, she flies with nearly no funds and a banking card that may cause her problems to use abroad. She wants to not worry about people stealing money so she does a little poka-yoke (ポカヨケ) on the problem of losing money by not taking them with her in first place.
On the way back, I will always put some money in her little purse just in case like the last time her flight back was delayed for 8 hours and the voucher provided by airline gave her nothing. And this is what I’m always worried about when she is flying to visit us or anywhere else. Get yourself a credit card, lady! Also, pro-tip: check your CC benefits, some of them would give you lounge access or increased mileage points for use of the card! Remember to choose a card that will minimalize/eliminate foreign transaction fees, gives you good exchange rate and make sure you use it only at the ATMs inside banks for maximum card security.
- Do not pet the sniffer dogs.
Although, I kind of understand Momzilla’s urge to pet those little fluffy heads, we need to keep in mind these are good boys on their duty.
Since Momzilla made friends with Biscuit the cat (very one sided love, to be frank) she felt immediate connection with nature and now she feels like she loves all the pets. Even the ones on special missions. Luckily she attempted to do it only once and surprisingly didn’t get in trouble, but I could see her smile when the dog was passing by – she just went ‘Oyo! (not ‘aya’, it was ‘oyo’). I bet she still dreams of that little pup.
- Do not leave your stuff unattended.
The best case scenario, you lose your belongings – the worst case scenario, you become unaware drug dealer or explosive carrier.
I know this is very extreme, but you can hear the announcements all the time at the airport.
Momzilla is at the age she will forget about small things. Lucky for us it’s usually losing a power bank or leaving a charger plugged to the wall, but if she has too many things on hand she just gets confused and may forget things. This is why we all should travel light!
- Do not befriend everyone.
Despite what I always say about Momzilla, people not married to her son tend to really like her. She will grab a poor, unsuspecting fellow to talk to through duration of her flight, then she will make him help her set up her phone, she will even ask if she can use their phone to call Sing if she has a problem.
It’s a miracle she only befriended good people – how much trouble can a middle age woman with a body of an 11 year old get into, by making friends with wrong people?
I don’t want to sound like an old lady worrying about everything, I know she can handle herself despite all the stupid things she sometimes does, but I wouldn’t want something bad to happen. Maybe reject her upon entry to Europe, that’s something I could live with, but nothing really, really bad.
At the end she’s Sing’s mom and my family as well, I will worry about her the same way I would for my parents.
What are the “don’ts” that you or your loved ones have done while traveling? Let us know, so at least we can keep “what if” scenarios in our heads for Momzilla 🙂
PS Before moving I would like to make a post on living in Ireland, taking into consideration Brexit and that due to this situation more people will look into possibly relocating to Ireland. I will also make a little list of “must-see” in Ireland in case you ever decide to travel.
Cannot believe in 3 weeks my life in Ireland will be a finished book!