Payal Agarwal: Travelling improved bond with my daughter
- IWB Post
- May 27, 2015
My mother is a travel freak. Yes, you heard it right. When I was born, everybody thought that now she would stop making spontaneous trips. However, she shocked everyone by packing my first travelling bag with her when I was barely 9 months old.
Today I wonder how it must be to travel with a kid. In this curious spirit I met with this young mommy, Payal Agarwal and her 5-year-old adorable daughter Ishita. Her travel parenting tips will help you make your next trip with your child better than the previous.
JWB: Where did you travel last and how often do you travel?
Payal: I travelled to Mumbai few days back via flight. Well, I try to travel at least once in three months for any short trip.
JWB: How do you entertain Ishita during journey?
Payal: I always keep her travel bag along. Her travel bag has all kinds of things, which help me during her mood swings. I let her pack her own travel bag to make her feel responsible. She mostly keeps her puzzles, coloring books, games, storybooks and her favorite doll in it. In addition, I always carry her favorite snack in a small box with me because kids these days are very choosy at eating. I have also downloaded plenty of educational games for her like tic tac toe, sudoku, jigsaw puzzles, rhymes, stories to keep her busy while on road journey.
Another thing, which I think most of the parents should do, is to talk to their kids about the things that are visible from the window during journey. I keep on telling her about different stories related to everything we see outside the window. She gets really fascinated by that.
JWB: That was quite a bucket full of parenting tips. What is the best thing according to you during these journeys?
Payal: Well, I feel that these kinds of travels improve the bonding of kids with their parents. When I was travelling to Kerala, I observed a very beautiful father-daughter relationship between Ishita and my husband. Since she is very young, and her mood swings a lot, my husband handles it very nicely – and I feel proud talking about it.
JWB: How do you prepare your daughter before going for a trip?
Payal: I always teach her about the place we are going to before taking off. This will not only increase her knowledge, but this way you can make her trip very interesting.
JWB: Any kind of the bad experience you faced with her?
Payal: The only problem I had to face is that she is used to use western toilets now and she faces many difficulties in using Indian toilets.
Otherwise, I would like to add, when you travel alone with a kid, people always try to help you in every possible way. Most of the times when I pick my luggage, people come ahead and offer their help.
JWB: What all the important things do you carry?
Payal: I always carry medicines while travelling. When I travel by flight, she always faces the problem of air shortage. Apart from that, I carry digestives, and medicines for road sickness.
Also, I always have a pen and a diary to write about memorable moments. This diary will become one of the most precious souvenirs later for her.
Apart from this, disposables, sanitizer, sunscreen lotion, extra pair of clothes, sunglasses, mints and chocolates, water bottle, snack box, wet tissues, foldable knife are a part of the necessity.
JWB: What kind of safety precautions do you take while travelling?
Payal: I have downloaded safety apps like scream alarm; share location etc, which I think can be helpful. In addition, I keep checking-in with my location on facebook. Moreover, I feel that every woman should learn self-defense.
JWB: How do you teach your daughter about safety?
Payal: I have made her learn all the important phone numbers for any emergency case. I have taught her the difference between a good touch and a bad touch. I keep asking her about it, so that she can consider it as something important.
JWB: Any other tip, which you think, is important.
Payal: Yes, I think when you are travelling alone, you should not carry much luggage, as it can turn into a lot of trouble handling it. Also, confirm all the bookings twice, as last minute cancellations can lead to many problems with a child.
JWB: Any favorite memory, which you think, is worth sharing with the world.
Payal: When we were at Kovalam beach in Kerala, I was playing with Ishita seaside. We made our footprints on the sand and clicked its picture. That was something special for me. Another memorable moment is when we saw Kathakali dance in Kerala. Ishita got very scared watching the heavy makeup of dancers. Then my husband explained her about it and she started enjoying.
JWB: Any suggestions you would like to give to young mothers for a better journey.
Payal: Always maintain a checklist to keep everything organized. Also, remember to prepare your schedule, which does not exhaust the child. If one day you are planning for a heavy outing, try to keep it light the next day.
Photographer: Shashank K Tyagi