Travelling Light: No Suitcase and At Times, No Plane

Posted on September 12, 2012


Actual conversations held between 8/31/12 and 9/10/12 between an unnamed, not- famous-but-should-be blogger (LBL) and various representatives of airlines and airport security:

8/31/12 Frankfort, Germany

LBL: Why have we been sitting at the gate for three hours?

Lufthansa Rep: We are on strike.

LBL: But I flew from DC to Frankfort.

LR: We weren’t on strike when you left Washington.

LBL: You decided to strike when I was in the air?  I guess it’s lucky the crew worked long enough to land the plane.  So how can I get to Istanbul?

LR: Don’t worry.  They are only allowed to strike until 1PM.  It’s the rule. (Note: The rule wasn’t followed)

8/31/2012 Istanbul, Turkey

LBL: My suitcase isn’t here.

Istanbul Airport Baggage Claim: What does it look like?

LBL: Black, with wheels and a handle.

IBC: Is this it?

LBL: No, that is your shoe.

9/4/12 Cappadocia, Turkey

LBL: My suitcase isn’t here.

Airport Baggage Claim: What does it look like?

LBL: Black, with wheels and a handle.

ABC: Is this it?

LBL: No, that is a chicken.

9/10/12 Istanbul, Turkey

United Airlines Rep: Your suitcase didn’t arrive from Bodrum. If it gets here before you board, you will have it.  If not, we will send it later.  What does it look like?

LBL: Not a shoe or a chicken.

United Airlines Pilot: We are sorry about the delay in leaving Istanbul. We will be arriving in Newark about two and a half hours late.  We know many of you have connections to make, so just go to Customer Service when you land and they will take care of everything.

9/10/12 Newark, NJ

Customs Official: Where is your suitcase?

LBL: It didn’t make it on the plane in Istanbul.  They are sending it to DC.

CO: It is here in Newark.

LBL: No, as I just said, they said it will go on to DC.

CO: Listen Lady, you are in the United States now.  This is the USofA, not Turkey. I don’t care what they told you.  We follow our rules, not theirs. We say your suitcase is here now.  Go back to the baggage area.

LBL to Baggage Claims Rep: My suitcase isn’t here.

BCR: What does it look like?

LBL: Black, with wheels and a handle. Not a shoe or a chicken.

BCR: Is this it?

LBL: That looks like someone’s lunch.

LBL to Customs Official: Hi, me again.  Still no suitcase.

CO: Oh OK then, go ahead. LBL doesn’t get very far before she is apprehended by an Immigration Official

IO: Come with me. (Leads LBL into a room where her passport is taken and she is seated near an empty chicken coop.  Ten minutes later, she is given back her passport and told to go. She heads to the Customer Service Office)

United Airlines Customer Service Office: Everyone form a line please. We know you all have grave concerns about lost luggage and missed connections and several of you look like you are about to give birth on the floor here.  We will happily take care of all of your issues by providing you with one rep to handle everything.  Has anyone lost a suitcase?

LBL (hand up): Yes, but I don’t care about it anymore.  I need to get to DC tonight.

UACSO: When does the flight leave?

LBL: There is one that leaves in fifteen minutes and there are at least 25 people ahead of me in this line. And a lost chicken.

UACSO: Yikes. (Heads to the desk, manually scribbles changes to the boarding pass) You’d better run.  The plane is about to leave.  It’s the last one out tonight.

Security Newark Airport

LBL: Excuse me, I am about to miss my flight and there are at least 25 people in this line.  I have metal in my back and knee so I will have to be searched/fondled/patted down/invaded.  Can you do it quickly?

TSA Rep #1: Duya want to put everyone’s lives at risk?  Wouldya be happy if we let everyone slide like that?

LBL: I’m not asking for you to pat me down quickly.  I’m asking you to pat me down right away and not leave me standing in a room waiting for the pat down.

TSAR#1: (Lots of loud lecturing and gesticulating at LBL about her behavior being a threat to the USofA)

2ND TSA Rep: Walk trew please (Buzzer goes off)

LBL: I told the other TSA person I have metal in my back and knee. I ned a pat down.

TSAR#2: Walk trew again please.

LBL: I have metal in my body and I am missing my connecting flight.

TSAR#2: Walk trew now and no talking, yih hear?

LBL: The buzzer will always go off. The metal will always be in my body no matter how many times you tell me to walk through.

TSAR#2: Aryuh wearing a belt?

LBL: Nobody is listening to me and I am missing my plane.

TSAR#1: Ged ova heah and be quiet and stop complaining.

LBL: I am getting really frustrated with you people.

TSAR#2: Duya have a pacemaker?

LBL (shrieking): NO!  I do not have a pacemaker!  I have metal in my back and knee!

TSAR#1: Oh good.  If yuh hadda pacemaker, yuh shouldn’tof gone trew duh medal detector.  That wouldda been really bad.

LBL, losing it, becomes sarcastic and disrespectful.  She then picks up her handbag and shoes and walks off. TSAR#1 follows her, yelling “If yuh don’t like goin trew dis when yuh travel, get yer own plane!”

LBL races to get to get to the plane, almost knocking over a chicken heading in the same direction.  LBL gets to the gate.  It is closed, vacuum sealed, triple locked. A phone call is made and she is allowed to board.

United Airlines Pilot: Welcome aboard!  We will be sitting at the gate for about 20 minutes!  We will then taxi to the runway for takeoff!  Because of massive construction, only one runway is operating!  We will go to the runway, and we will be 25th in line, so after about another hour, we will take off!  We are really happy to have you on board!

LBL to her seatmate: I can’t believe what a disaster this day has been.

Seatmate: Yeah, tell me about it.  I lost my coop.