It’s Only Water. Calm Down.

Every time I go to an airport, something always happens to me at the security point…you know the one where you have to take off your belt and shoes? Right there. I hate having to do that, so I stopped wearing belts and shoes. I can understand why one has to take them off though. Belts have metal in them and they’ll set of the detector. Shoes…do shoes have metal in them? Are the rings around holes for the laces metal? Anyways, I’ve thought a lot about what is mostly the cause of me being sent out of the security area and I figured it out! It’s my trusty bottle of water. I carry that bottle everywhere I go. To classes, to weekly Mass, to Sunday Mass, to the mall, to the grocery, downtown, to the bathroom (kidding…or am i?), to volunteering, job interviews, to the airport. Many times I’ve had to go back and empty the bottle, sometimes I can just drink it right there. The two most recent instances of that happening were a bit colourful.

Last Summer, I flew from JFK to Madrid, then I took a connecting flight to Lisbon.We had to get off the plane, go through Immigration, then go to the Gate to catch the Lisbon flight. It was a lot of running around, so I stuffed my bottle of water in my sleeping bag and totally forgot about it! We got to the security check point and I was one of the first in our large group to get there. We were on a schedule (I love schedules) and we needed to catch out connecting flight to Lisbon! So I sent my sleeping bag through the scanner and the guard asked whose it was. At first, I had no idea what she was saying because she was speaking in Spanish…well…I shouldn’t say ‘at first’ cuz to this day, I still don’t know exactly what she said. A Priest translated for me. Basically, I couldn’t take my water past that point and I couldn’t empty it in the bathroom that was RIGHT THERE. Nooooo, I had to go back through the scanner with allllllllllll my luggage, find the bathroom downstairs (all signs in Spanish), empty my bottle there, then go through the whole process of lining up to send my luggage through the scanner again. I did not go back by that woman! I was the last in our group to get through that point and two priests were waiting on me (I knew neither of them).

The second incidence happened in New Jersey. I was barely on time for my flight and I got held up at security for a nail clipper in my purse. While searching my bag, the security guard saw my bottle of water and said that I can’t take it past that point. The bottle was like….1/3 filled with water. I told him I’ll just drink it because I didn’t have time to put my jacket & shoes on (it was Winter so I had to wear shoes) and then join the line all over again! And plus, the ‘safe’ place to drink it was no more than 10 metres away. I’m sure there are people who could spit from where I was standing, to where he wanted me to go to drink the water. WATER. He said “NO!!! If you drink that here, they will see you and they will kill you! They’ll kill me too and I dunno ’bout you, but I don’t feel like dying any time soon. They have cameras EVERYWHERE!” I said ok, Sir. I went outside the security area in my socks, drank my water, skipped the line (this guard was like…you can’t just leave like that! I saw you leave! blah blah blah) and went through the scanner again. You know what, he let me keep the nail clipper. Steups. All a waste of my time.

Next time I fly somewhere, I’m definitely making sure  I follow the people rules and go with an empty bottle. I’ll just fill it up again after the security point 😀

Love,
Lee