Carrying On – At The Airport

They say, lightning doesn’t strike twice in the same place, but whoever said that, obviously hadn’t been through security at our local airport. The last time I tried, my almost empty tube of toothpaste was confiscated. This time, they focused on my travel sets, including a nail-file and a mini-knife, so small that I couldn’t even use it to attack a politically correct dwarf – that’s one of those guys with the pointed hats that Snow White used to hangout with, before they were confiscated (the hats, not the dwarfs – well maybe the dwarfs too, because I haven’t seen them around lately)!

I protested that I wasn’t planning to attack anyone (except possibly the security guy if he didn’t return my property) and eventually he said, you can keep the nail-file but we’re taking the mini-knife. On our previous trip, the airline kindly provided us with solid stainless steel knives and forks onboard, so I was thinking maybe they wanted to give us some better implements on this trip too, but it didn’t happen. I suppose the idea is that next time they will confiscate my mini bottle-opener and after that the mini corkscrew, so they eventually have a complete travel set. I guess, there has to be an upside to every job!

I don’t really enjoy flying, but this time we had a direct return flight, so I thought, for once, we could purchase some duty-free liquor. I was wrong, of course. Our flight apparently had the lowest priority of all flights, so just getting to the plane itself was an adventure, never mind the duty-free. We arrived by rail at the International Terminal. Then we had to walk to Terminal 3 for check-in. From there, we were directed to the duty-free shop at the very end of Terminal 2. There we were told that, since our flight was leaving from Terminal 1, the duty free shop would not deliver any items to us and of course, in Terminal 1 there is no duty-free shop – surprise! I was not so happy. I hadn’t planned on a guided tour of SFO, I only wanted to get to my plane and organize some duty-free on the way.

On this trip, we had specially taken only hand luggage to save time and trouble, but we really shouldn’t have bothered. First, we had to carry our bags all the way around the different terminals. Then, for the final leg, we had to climb up and down various stairs, then onto a shuttle bus and up and down even more stairs to access the departure terminal. On the way, we did register some disapproval at the customer service desk, but our only satisfaction was that other people were having much bigger problems. When we finally landed, it had been raining so the airline announced they would save us the discomfort of carrying our hand luggage by delivering everything to the conveyor belt!

So much for the benefits of carry-on luggage! You can carry it “around” and you can carry it “on”, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you can carry it “off”! I think, next time, I will check-in absolutely everything I can. Then I’ll probably be flagged at security as a very suspicious person indeed!