Tuesday, July 13, 2010

"His Banner Over Me Is Love"

Boston Logan airport. Oh my. You can’t make this stuff up.

I’ve never been in an airport where you had to go through security again when you were catching a connecting flight. Not until Boston Logan. We arrived at the A Terminal and the connecting flight to London was out of the B Terminal. Simple enough, eh? Not.

Worst. Signage. Ever. There was one sign that said ‘Connecting Flights”---so we went in that direction. And we walked. And walked. And walked. We finally got to where we were leaving the secure area and thought we had missed the turn to B Terminal. Not. We asked the guy at the door where B Terminal was and he pointed out the door. “Do we have to go through security again?” He looked at us like we were from another planet (well, perhaps Seattle is another planet) and said ‘yeah,’ with a 'what planet are YOU from, lady?' tone in his voice. With less than two hours until our next flight, this wasn’t the happiest news we could have received.

But that was only the beginning…..

We finally got to B Terminal. We got ready to go through security. The guy in front of me had stuff in his pockets that set off the metal detector, so they sent him back through---and while they were doing that, and I was watching my stuff go onto the conveyor belt through the scanner (I hate it when my stuff gets through ahead of me), the TSA woman pointed at me and pulled me out of line. She asked me, in a very accusing tone, “What do you have on you that set it off?” “I didn’t set it off,” I replied. “The guy in front of me did.” She apparently didn’t believe me. She pointed at my plastic watch and my plastic belt and ordered me to take them off (they’ve never set anything off in any other airport). Then, I received an invitation to step into a wrap-around scanner, with footprints on the floor. Interesting. I handed her my stuff, and she asked if I ‘anything else’ on me---and said that we could step into a private room if need be. I really wasn’t expecting a strip search, you know? She decided that wasn’t necessary, ordered me to put my hands over my head in “His Banner Over Me is Love” style and started talking low into her walkie talkie thing. “Blah-blah-blah-blah-blah-female,” says the TSA lady. I’m still singing “His Banner Over Me is Love,” and wondering what I ever did to get myself potentially strip-searched.

And then it hit me. I was in one of those full-body scanners. I was virtually *NEKKED* folks! GAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! I was experiencing a virtual strip-search. At this point, I didn’t know whether to laugh or to cry, so I turned around to Jo, who had also been pulled out of line (guilty by association, perhaps?) and was about to be virtually *NEKKED* as well. I said, “Remember when flying used to be fun?” TSA lady was not amused.

Finally, she said it was ok to step out of the NEKKED machine. Now it was Jo’s turn to sing “His Banner Over Me is Love.” We both decided that this was hysterical, and she suggested that on the way back, we needed to bring flowers to the guy that had to observe our virtual NEKKED-ness. Hee.

But that’s not all….

We got on the plane and pushed back 2 mins. early with a promise that we’d be in London earlier than our scheduled time of 6:50 AM. We sat and sat and sat on the tarmac.

The captain came on the intercom and announced that we were returning to the gate to deal with a ‘minor’ problem. Then Jo pointed out the window at the 3 fire trucks and 1 medic truck that were all escorting us back to the gate. “Minor” problem? GAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! Get me off this plane!

So, we sat and watched the firemen, in full fireman regalia, get out of the truck, get on the plane and go into the cockpit. I began to wonder why I hadn’t packed a rosary, because I could have used it just about then. The captain came back onto the intercom and said, “blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, aeronautical tech-speak, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, steam into a line, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, more aeronautical tech-speak, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, thought that smoke was coming out of the engine, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah."

So, we sat. And sat.

60 minutes later, the firemen left the cockpit and the captain came on to apologize for the umpteenth time, and said, “blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, even more aeronautical tech-speak, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, but we’re fine now, so we’re leaving and so sorry for the inconvenience”

It was a long night. That 'sleeping on the plane' thing didn't work. We landed 90 mins late, but who cares? We got there in one piece, and so did the plane, thanks be to God!


ashliiita said...

miss ann! someday, I hope to have an airport experience with you, as I would be doubled over in laughter. I especially liked the part about the *NEKKED* machine and giving the man flowers ha ha. SO glad you guys landed safely and can't wait for more updates! <3 ashliiiita!

pat grospe said...

Thinking of you as you continue on this journey.
Hopefully you are safely on the ground in the Holy Land by now!
Pat Grospe

2jacks said...

I ended up having to go through security again in the Seattle airport. They were under construction and the signage was confusing. There were a bunch of us that thought we had followed the signs correctly only to find ourselves having to go through security again. But it was nothing like your experience, thank God!

What a way to begin your journey, being virtually stripped NEKKED and then scared to death. The rest of your adventure has no place to go but up!

Are you sure you aren't making this up?

Looking forward to hearing more.

Love and prayers,