As many of you know we share our travel stories as honestly as we can. Most of the time we will all be smiling and happy in our pictures.
To be honest most of the time this is actually the case and we are having a great time but there have been a couple of times that I have wanted to throw in the towel and come straight home. This has been both here in Australia on a trip and overseas.
So I have put together our not-so-brilliant moments and hope that even in the bad times you can think of this and realise it is not all sunshine and rainbows travelling with a family but more importantly, it’s ok to talk about them too.
Marley Ends Up In a Hospital In Batemans Bay
We had planned a trip to go up the New South Wales coast in July for a holiday. It was our first big trip as a family of four and we were all really looking forward to it.
We had the tent ready and even though it was winter we were thinking it would be a little bit warmer up on the coast…how wrong were we and we learnt the absolute hard way! I think on the first night we all ended up on the same bed freezing, under every blanket we had bought.
The next day we went out and bought a heap of blankets from Woollies which was really lucky as Marley got horribly sick and threw up on nearly all of them.
She spent the day in bed and by that night she just couldn’t keep anything down so I took her up to the Batemans Bay Hospital to see if they could help her.
We were in there for hours and she had so much medicine to help her out. When we got back to the tent it was warmer as we had the little camp heater going and she slept with me. It took her a couple of days to get better and we pushed her around in the pram wrapped in a blanket most of the time.
Poor little thing did not enjoy this holiday much and there are pictures of her wrapped in blankets in a pram too as she was just too tired to get out of them.
Our bag is stolen on a train in Naples
This was the one situation I thought we would never get into. We have travelled a fair bit over our time and I am a very cautious person when we do travel but I can tell you to this day I still have no idea how they got that bag from in between the four of us in a nearly empty train in Italy.
It was also the one time I really wanted to just go home as I felt so sick that someone had done that to us, they followed us and we were their target. I had some crazy thoughts after it and it affected me in a way I never thought it would.
I had seen other posts about people having something stolen and I thought it was an overreaction on their behalf…until it happened to me. It took me a few days and Mark told me it was ok and realised that we were all safe, that’s what mattered the most.
The real problems started when we got home and I had to fight the insurance company…but that is another story!
Willow got seriously ill in Germany and was on bed rest
One morning Willow woke up when we were staying at a friend’s mum’s and she just did not look right at all. She said she was fine but she was white as a ghost. We went out for the day and she slept in the car in between stops and by the time we got home that night I was worried about her.
She never gets sick and when she does a good job. She had a shocking temperature and was so lethargic that we knew we had to get her to a doctor. The next day we took her to a doctor that our friends organised for us and she was given some medicine and told to rest. So rest she did, and she slept for hours.
It took a couple of days for her to get better. We were so thankful for the doctor as she was great with Willow and really thoroughly looked at her to make sure it was just a virus.
Bec got food poisoning somewhere in the Czech Republic
This was on our first trip with an 11-month-old Willow. I was still breastfeeding her occasionally and I got so sick it was not funny. I could not be any more than a few meters from a toilet if I ate anything at all so I just stopped eating altogether.
This was not great for me at all and I got so weak but I kept going out every day exploring. We had no idea how to get to a doctor so I just put up with it until it passed. It was not my best idea and I wish I had seen someone as it took forever to feel good again!
It is also the reason why I have not been back to the Czech Republic *Edit note: I have now been back there and I loved it…it was only for 48 hours and I did not get sick!
Our Rome apartment was a slight exaggeration and was tiny
We were checking out an apartment in Rome online and it looked perfect for us. It was big with lots of room, a separate room for us and a large bathroom. When we got there it was a bit of a surprise…it was tiny.
They had used some sort of brilliant Harry Potter magic with the photography to make it look much, much bigger. Once you added the four of us, four large suitcases and unfolded the sofa bed for the girls there was very little room.
But on the upside it was clean and a roof over our heads so we made do!
Mark got sick in Helsinki
This was my worst nightmare come to life. Mark is the planner and the motivator when it comes to getting us up and going especially if we are suffering terrible jetlag. And whatever he had hit him for a six.
We had just landed in Helsinki after a massive trip (I think that one was 37 hours from the front door to the hotel) and he was just not himself. He still got out there and saw Helsinki on the first day. On the first night, he slept really well but then halfway through the second, he broke out in a sweat that I have never seen before. Our sheets were wet and he was shaking.
I had no idea what to do or who to call. I left him and the girls to go and get some food and some extra Nurofen as he had taken it all. When I returned he was standing in the hallway with a man looking green. The man was telling us that our room had to be vacated immediately as there was a water leak in the room above us.
Both the girls were asleep and Mark was getting worse so he could not help me repack and relocate everyone to another room, thankfully it was just down the hall.
I did that and while I relocated everyone Mark went to the doctor and got antibiotics. It was only a few hours before he was better and getting us up and going.
Marley got seriously sick in Copenhagen and we need a full room clean
Marley is our sick child. Too much sugar she will vomit, too much excitement she will vomit, she will get sick she will vomit, not enough water she will vomit…she will sometimes just vomit and we have no idea why.
So I always have a collection of Chucky bags in my luggage and in an easy place to get to. She had been great on our last trip and only got sick once. I was stunned as at home she is sick quite regularly so I think I got a bit slack with making sure they were near me.
This night in Copenhagen I heard her cough but I was way too late. She was also on a top bunk and it just went everywhere.
Luckily we had the suitcases closed and on the other side of the room. We were staying in a hostel so the room was quite small and how she missed all of our stuff is still a mystery. I had wipes and I used them to clean it as much as I could where I could.
And then the next morning I had to go down and tell the front desk. I was so sorry and I told them I had cleaned the majority of it up but I would need some new sheets and a couple of new towels. the guy was brilliant and told me not to worry about it, I was stressing like crazy about it, and they fixed up our room.
I was so thankful that they were so good about it and they were thankful I had cleaned most of it up!
We got absolutely fleeced by the Gladiators in Rome
We saw the Gladiators having their pictures taken with other people and we stood back watching. After they had finished they made a beeline for the girls and started playing around with them. I took a couple of pictures and thought it was all pretty funny. they then said for Mark and I to get in there too so we did and didn’t really think of the cost! BIG MISTAKE! While we can look back and laugh now those pictures cost us 25 Euros! They wanted more money but we had no extra cash on us and they ended up taking what Mark was offering! Neither of us could believe that it had taken us this long to get absolutely fleeced on our travels!
We thought the girls had jumped on a train in Vienna without us
This was my not-so-greatest moment. I went into a complete screaming, crazy, epic meltdown moment Mum including instant tears. We were just about to get off a train in Vienna and we had said to the girls we needed to quickly get on another train on the other platform.
They thought that the train already there was that train and they zipped over there through a huge crowd to get on it. The train doors shut and it prepared to pull away, I could not see the girls.
I was in an instant panic and what made it worse was the look on Mark’s face too. He is a chilled, very calm man but as the platform cleared of people we could not see the girls and my heart sank.
I just started screaming their names, people just froze around us and started looking as I stood there screaming. As the train pulled away my mind was racing and Mark was shaking, searching everywhere.
It was then that two little scared-out-of-their-mind girls appeared from behind a little shop on the platform in tears themselves. What was only a minute or two was the scariest moment in my entire life but they have not ever done that again.
In Dubrovnik, we got charged a crazy amount for table service
When people say that a place shuts down for the winter we normally think there will still be some people around and businesses will still be operating but this was not the case for Dubrovnik.
We were so surprised at the lack of restaurants open and how many places were shut (There was an upside that we got the best of the city having it to ourselves and we had the best experiences with some of the local shopkeepers)
On our first night it was late when we arrived and it had been raining so we went to find somewhere to eat.
There was just nowhere open and our choices were very limited so we ended up following a man to his restaurant which was packed with people. We got served and a bowl of bread came out. It was warm and fresh so the girls devoured it.
That bread cost us $30 and we were shocked. It was too late to argue with the hostess so we paid it and then told the next lot of people coming in not to eat the bread! We did not return to that restaurant!
Our house in Wagga had mice poo everywhere in it
We had to go up to Wagga Wagga for the weekend to see my brother graduate from the Army so we rented out a little flat. It was a huge drive up there and we were all tired. When we arrived we ran over a mouse in the driveway but we didn’t think much of it as there were paddocks on the other side of the road.
We got the key from the place we were told it would be and we walked inside. I didn’t notice it at first but it was everywhere when I did. It was on the benches, on the kitchen table, on the couch and in the cupboards. There was no vacuum cleaner for us to fix it so we had to call the owners to come and bring us one.
Once they were there they were a bit cranky at me for calling as they said it had been cleaned that morning. I was really surprised by that but they fixed it up and we didn’t have a problem with the night that we stayed there. We did leave a little earlier than expected though.
Willow’s nappy exploded on an aeroplane
This is one memory I will never forget and to this day we still laugh about it. Willow went on her first international flight when she was 10 months old. On the first leg from Melbourne to Singapore, she let rip the biggest dirty nappy I have ever seen.
It was literally everywhere but what made it worse was that tiny, tiny aeroplane toilet. I had to use that…we need wet wipes and some serious smell control! The extra problem was being our first trip over there I had not packed enough clothes for her (I had really but I was stressed out about just how much poo there was and if it was going to happen again) It has made some serious adjustments on what clothes we travel in and the types of spares we take!
We seriously underestimated the power of a waterfall
We were all so excited to be visiting Iceland and even in the winter, it did not stop us from getting out and about. We had all the best winter warmers we could have and we were all toasty as we wandered…until we visited Seljalandsfoss.
We got out of the car and stood to marvel it from a distance. We decided to walk up to it and explore it closer. The moment we got really close a gust of wind picked up and blew the water straight at us. We were all drenched in seconds and very uncomfortable!
Our poor little car heater did its best to dry our clothes but it just couldn’t deal with that much-wet clothing! For the rest of the day, I tried in vain to dry our pants by the heater…boy, I hope no one saw us driving around Iceland with no pants on!
So there you have it, my list of our not-so-brilliant travel moments from this crazy travel mum. The mishaps that we have had on our travels. We have learnt plenty from the things that have gone wrong for us and in all honesty they are not that bad really.
We have been very lucky with the majority of our travel but there is always something you can learn from on every trip. It is not meant to be perfect every single day and there are times when I think why do we do this? But then a great thing happens and I remember why we travel as a family.
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