I am of the firm belief that at airports, one should make every effort to sail gracefully through Check-In, Passport Control and Security, and to be as accommodating as possible to the ground staff. Unfortunately, many of these same ground staff employees tend to be gaunt, anal-retentive types, who rarely afford us Silver Shirkers the same courtesy in return
It is a sad fact dear readers, that, in terms of baggage weight restrictions, the more budget-conscious the airline, the more nit-picky its staff. How then, can one avoid being at the mercy of a mealy-mouthed check-in assistant, who triumphantly declares a traveler’s suitcase to be one teensy nanogram overweight? And worse, uses this flimsy excuse to force us Old Crocks to either lighten our suitcases on the spot, or suffer the outrage of being charged a hefty fine!
In our twilight travel years, the constant threat of having to cough up, for even the slightest weight infraction, has forced Helmut and I to give those check-in-cheapskates what they crave - a very public offloading of our suitcase contents.
We have discovered that cramming the spare space in our coffers, with copious amounts of polystyrene ‘peanuts’ (those tiny, lightweight protective fillers used by the packing trade), is well worth the drama that ensues. Could it be because those minuscule styrofoam mischief-makers are apt to GUSH OUT haphazardly, in every direction, thus creating mayhem and a carpet of instant litter, throughout the entire check-in area? Yes!
Dear readers, such a satisfying outpouring of plastic rubbish from one’s suitcase is guaranteed to cause an equally satisfying outpouring of vulgar expressions from the check-in staff!
Helga’s Handy Hint: When going through Passport Control, in order to avoid any discrepancies relating to one’s date of birth, eye colour, etc., do try to ensure that one is in EXACTLY the same advanced state of inebriation, as when one’s original passport photo was taken.
Hubby Helmut, a saint of a man, who would gladly sell you the shop-lifted shirt off his own back, admits there is no love lost between him and today’s overly zealous Airport Security Officer. I am referring, of course, to the mirthless employee who, after demanding that innocent, geriatric holidaymakers open up their carry-on luggage, proceeds (often without the reassuring barrier of fresh latex gloves) to snoop around in their private belongings, under the very public gaze of fellow travelers.
Dear readers, one should only agree to this type of search under protest, especially if it is conducted by those who relentlessly single out retirees by delving willy-nilly into their carry-on luggage!
To follow, is a classic method Helmut and I employ, to irritate the increasing number of security staff member who deliberately profile pensioners. On the day of travel, we bury Helmut’s trusty nostril-hair clippers, deep within his carry-on – a devilish act, which sets off the metal detectors when his bag enters the X-ray machine. This alarm gives the nosy officer on duty or ‘old snoopy-drawers’, the right to open our luggage and search inside. But what horrors await this hapless individual, dear readers?
Horrors abound, because in Helmut’s Louis Vuitton carry-on bag, we Old Fossils have deliberately packed a sordid selection of intimate products for seniors. What is our preferred choice of embarrassing items?
Helmut and I can thoroughly recommend the following:
- soft, padded products for ‘ultimate bladder control’
- laxatives for retentive retirees
- spare sets of dentures
- disposable urinal or travel potty
- large tube of hemorrhoid cream (plus applicator)
- re-usable home colonic irrigation enema kit, complete with graphic safety instructions (in color).
Dear readers, if all goes well during the search, even the most weasel-like security officer will turn pale and break into a cold sweat. This is especially true if these same intimate items, or ‘Goodies for the Golden Years’, are placed on a bed of Helmut’s rancid, week-old socks and underwear. As this unfortunate officer discovers: Louis Vuitton carry-ons, are not be sniffed at!
Disarray achieved? Yes! Time, then, to move on to the next stage of our airport adventure – duty-free shopping.
Cheerio, and Happy Holidaying,