Worst airport experience of my life

I finally made it to my parent’s house in Fredericksburg, VA. But not before possibly the worst airport experience. Since we rented a car, and I had two giant suitcases, a backpack, and a carry-on bag, there was no way I was going to return the car first. So I did the curb-side check-in, where you pull up, drop off your bags, then return the car. Sounds easy and convenient  right? Well, not if the jerk who takes your bags gives you a lecture about overweight bags! I’m moving overseas for a year, and I’m well aware my bags are overweight. I was prepared to pay the overweight baggage fee. But the handler treated me like an idiot, and said things like, “Oh, well why didn’t check before you left? You are going to have to pay extra. Don’t you know the rules? Hey Bob, come look at this lady’s bags. Look how big they are.” For the record, my bags were only 10 lbs overweight and don’t look super huge. They look quite average in my opinion. And I planned to take out some items and leave them with my parents. AND, I TOLD HIM A MILLION TIMES I WAS AWARE OF THE FEES. I was so mad. This guy was rude to me and wasted about 15 extra minutes before he actually took my money and checked me in. 

I tried to quickly forget that dummy and get excited about seeing my parents, but then I went through security. I’m not a frequent traveler, but I have traveled quite a bit, and I always make sure to stay up to date on rules and regulations and blah blah blah. Sometimes I’m so prepared, I start to get paranoid and run a million different “what-if” scenarios through my mind. But I was not prepared for this. I went through the metal detector with no problem, but noticed it was taking longer than normal for my bag to come through the conveyor belt. So I prepared myself for TSA to flag my bag. Which they did. My brand new, never flown before, carry-on. I immediately start thinking of everything in the bag, trying to figure out what set it off. Maybe I forgot a liquid? Maybe it was the two lacrosse balls I have taped together? (they do look funky…).  A TSA agent came over and started asking me odd questions, like they really suspected me of something strange, so I asked what set off their system. Apparently there was something on the OUTSIDE of my carry-on bag that set it off. Possibly the material it was made of. And so they had to go through EVERY item in my bag, backpack, and purse, and wipe EVERY item with a special thingy, and put it into a machine that tells them if I’m the worst person of the day.  I wanted to scream at them and tell them they were crazy and that’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard. But I bit my tongue. Seriously, I drew blood. Long story short, I stood there for 45 min., they didn’t find anything, and I got to repack all my belongings off to the side while everyone who passed by stared as if I was contaminated. 

Then I went to the bathroom and cried for approximately two minutes. 

OH. And the best part! When I finally boarded the plane, my stupid “substance-laced” bag didn’t fit in the overhead compartment (even though ebags.com said it would fit. I’m never buying from them again. AND, this was a standard-sized plane; nothing rinky-dink). Instead of helping me, the flight attendant remarked that I should take something out. NO. SHIT.  It did, however, fit under the seat. What kind of bag fits under the seat, and not in the overhead compartment?!

By this point I had come to terms with the fact that my checked luggage would be lost.

I try to be optimistic, but sometimes it’s nice to be as pessimistic as possible. Because then you aren’t let down. Luckily, baggage claim didn’t let me down, and both suitcases were waiting for me when I landed. 

I guess in the end, everything worked out. But I’m never traveling with that dumb bag again.  And I’ll forever be paranoid about overhead compartments. 

The next blog will be much happier, I’m sure! 

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