Friday, July 16, 2004
For those who have never traversed airport security with a seven and a half month old, allow me to detail the process.
- Approach security checkpoint. Reflect that although the number of miles redeemed to score two—because you're trying so hard to be that kind of mother—first class tickets could send a family of eight to Kuala Lumpur, it was worth it to have access to the shorter line, primarily because there will be fewer people behind you.
- Wind through line barriers with stroller. Ready I.D. for attendant. Watch dread ripple back through line as others grasp what's about to ensue.
- Approach table in front of scanning machine. Remove TiBook from case, put computer in one plastic bin, case in another.
- Diaper backpack goes in bin number 3, shoes, belt, and jacket in bin number 4.
- Separate (amid considerable protest) baby from toys and blanket, plunk them in bin number 5.
- Detach car seat from bottom of stroller, set on table next to line of bins. Begin feeding bins 1-3 through scanner. Watch security personnel survey front area for additional bins, as the supply on your side is dwindling.
- Use eyes to implore security attendant to occupy baby while you fold stroller and put it in line for scanning behind the bins.
- Unbuckle baby from car seat restraints, hoist on shoulder. Attempt (with considerable fumbling) to depress latches on both sides of car seat to lower handle so it will fit through machine.
- Glance backward; wish you hadn't.
- Feed bins 4-5, stroller, and car seat through scanner.
- Carry baby to metal detector, walk through, register "beep." Retrace steps, put watch in bin number 6, try again.
- Watch security attendant behind scanner examine bottles of breast milk in backpack on screen. Fervently hope he will not ask you to drink it.
- Proceed through metal detector again, scoping out bin number 7 in case it's needed for your hair clip.
- Proceed to end of ramp, begin removing bins so other items might finally come through behind you. Sympathize with fourth guy back who thought until recently he would just make his flight.
- Reassemble, reattach, rebuckle. Lose self in crowd to avoid inevitable recriminations.
Unless otherwise expressly stated, all original material of whatever nature created by Denise M. Howell and included in the Bag and Baggage weblog and any related pages, including the weblog's archives, is licensed under a Creative Commons License.