Thursday, July 31, 2008

Care of the Royal Hashmite Court, How the Other Half Lives?

So, since moving to Jordan, I've lamented that terrible state of children's car safety in Jordan. Most people forego car seats altogether and many of those who don't use an infant carrier not strapped into the car (or as I call it, a violent projectile). The Bean-mobile is quite the sight to the uninitiated. It draws comments every single time a new person joins us for a ride. We have a field of car seats in the back of the bean-mobile... Now, when ButterBean outgrew her infant seat, El 3atal and I were in that enviable position of two decent incomes. So, we sprung for the Cadillac of car seats, the Britax Marathon. It's an awesome car seat (I highly recommend it to those of you who might be considering which car seat to buy). It stays with your child until they reach 60 lbs. They cost a small fortune and when the twins came, we were happy to get a small discount when buying two more (Ouch!). But we figured it was an investment in our children's lives.

Well, yesterday as El 3atal was waiting on his bags on arrival at QAIA, he saw an interesting sight. He saw a large box with the name Britax and the picture of the car seat (much like the Beans'). In bold letters across it, it read: Attention Royal Hashemite Court, Ali Bin Hussein. First, kudos to Prince Ali for good taste in buying the best car seat available (in my most humble opinion). Second, kudos to Prince Ali for being a trendsetter and bucking the current trend of children in urgent danger on each trip in a car. So, for those of you who are keeping up with the Jones', please, please go out and buy a Britax (or any other decent car seat). Use it until your child is at its limits and then get a booster. Yella, fellow Jordanians, put your kids first (and you too can try to compete with a prince).

And, as a reminder (I posted on this a long time back) take a gander at this video on You Tube -> I know the Mom from an on-line bulletin board and her son was 5 days younger than ButterBean. It articulates, much more eloquently than I can, why you should continue to have your kids in a car seat even at the unfashionable (in Jordan at least) age of 6, 7, 8. Really until they are old enough to fit properly into the car's seat belts. Let's stop the deaths, let's demonstrate how much we love our kids, let's put our families first. Maybe it's time to lobby for car seat legislation...

Happy Royal Treatment!


At 7:52 AM , Blogger Simple Answer said...

I'll join you in a campaign to put kids in car seats!

We arrive on the evening of the second - and I'll definitely be in touch! Thanks for all your kindness.

At 8:17 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

MommaBean!!! Well said and excellent observation to El 3atal!!!

Another bene of the Britax is your beans can see the world go by.

At 1:50 PM , Blogger joladies said...

My son and family came over from UK a couple of days ago and I wanted to hire a car and a car seat for the children - well, what a performance. JETT said their drivers were very careful and not to worry! And other rental agencies just did not have any. In the end we borrowed one from the Four Seasons (where they were staying) but could not find a booster seat for the five year old. I absolutely go mad when I see parents strapped in and children on their lap in the front seat. T

At 2:52 PM , Blogger MommaBean said...

Simple, I look forward to seeing you once you are up to being seen :).

Kinz, El 3atal's got a great set of eyes... And given its size, the Britax DOES stand out.

T, My dear.. You shoud have dropped me a line. My car seats are big enough for ButterBean who is now 6! and she'll probably be in it until she's closer to 8... Next time you know, drop MommaBean a line. If I don't have one, I can probably find one :). And at this point, we could have simply loaned you ours, since the Beans are mostly home-bound now that school's out.

At 11:08 PM , Blogger Unknown said...

It is so sad to see small kids standing in the front seat, and bouncing all around in the cars. So dangerous. My kids all had the car seats even here in Jordan and then the boosters. Alhamdulillah, now they have grown out of them and I passed them on to other sisters. Our children are our most precious assets and they deserve and need protection.

At 1:10 AM , Blogger Sharon said...

Yeah M-E for bringing up this issue!! I have my Feb. 04 girl in a 5 point harness, a Radian. Technically, it's not allowed to have a non-European seat here in France but they wont test seats past 18 kilos/40lbs. A crime! Why can't kids in Europe be safe? For this reason, the Marathon and the Radian are not sold here. There are even other Britax products in both France and nearby Germany but not the higher-harnessed ones.

Keep your children rear-facing for as long as possible! Keep your children in 5 point seats for as long as possible!

What are *all* our governments going to get a clue??

At 8:05 AM , Blogger MommaBean said...

Nicole, exactly. El 3atal and I saw a lap baby (in airline vernacular) just yesterday. I wanted so badly to take a picture, it was so sad. It really is a sad thing that people can't seem to understand that it CAN happen to them.

Sharon, exactly. At least other car seats are desirable in France it seems. Here, no laws for ANY age child andnot really that common. Terribly, terribly sad. Well, at least we're bucking the trend in BOTH places :).

At 9:48 AM , Blogger NasEr said...

its not that Jordanian are negligence about their children -well some are- , i htink its more of they just used to it and never been warned about how dangerous it is not to have a car seat and/or been told the benefits of having one.
good luck with the campaign :D

oh another thing, the percentage of Jordanian citizen living under the line of poverty isn't exactly small, the burden of buying """accessories"""" isn't widely welcomed .

At 2:46 PM , Blogger MommaBean said...

Naser, I do think there's some lack of awareness, but I also think there's alot of "it can't happen to Me"-ing and "if it's Allah's will"-ing going on. Oh, and I certianly agree that given the choice of food or a car seat, one choice is more obviously an immedaite need. I think that for those living without means, generous benefactors (read that rich people) should be donating to help get car seats into cars. Our children need to be a priority!


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