You can go home again, you just can’t come back…

After looking back over the last few weeks and trying to remember all that I’ve done, I’m extremely tired. Maybe too tired to write this post…

**gulp gulp**

Caffeine imbibed. Can now carry on.

So. Mid-terms were two weeks ago, and while I didn’t have horrible tests or anything, I did have my entire hall awake at all hours of the night, therefore ensuring that I did not fall asleep until after 1am. I would like to reiterate what I’ve said to friends before: I’m too old for this crap. Especially since I’m not getting paid. Money is a not-so-surprising motivator. (I did make some extra money by working over mid-term break, though, instead of going home as originally planned.)

I finally made it home, too! I had a great time hanging out with everyone I love. I flew into Charlotte late Thursday night, and was picked up by my sweet man. The traffic-control nazis that keep cars moving in the Arrivals area wouldn’t let us linger for a second. I mean, really. I haven’t seen this man in how long? Give it a rest, Rent-a-Cop. 

It was so amazingly luxurious to stay in a place where there is only one toilet and shower in the entire bathroom. (Who knew that this was what I would miss most? Bathrooms with no stalls?) My bed was amazing, as I expected, and I totally slept spread-eagle WITHOUT FALLING OUT (this time). Ahhh, good to be home.

Also? Can we talk about how much edible food I ate? I mean, I eat plenty of inedible food at school, but this stuff was actually palatable! I’m talking BISCUITS AND GRAVY, Y’ALL. Grits. Chicken. Grilled asparagus. Baked potatoes. It was nirvana. Dane and I went out to eat at Wild Wing Cafe and I about cried. But that would have been difficult to explain, so I held it together…


Deceptively angelic.

Friar Dane
Maybe a little more Obi-Wan than Friar, but you get the point.

Saturday night, Dane and I went to a Halloween party at a friend’s house. He dressed up as a monk, and did quite a good job of it. I was planning on wearing regular clothes, since I was working with nothing but a carry-on, and then planned to find some cat ears and maybe draw on a nose and whiskers. Not too complicated, right? Apparently, it was. Neither Target nor Walmart had anything of the sort, though they had plenty of everything else. I was bitter… But after much seething, I found a feathered halo and some silver wings that I thought suited me perfectly. (No snickering, if you please.) We had a great time catching up with friends and I’m now planning a girls’ weekend here in D.C. I CAN’T WAIT. Some of my favorite people in my favorite city spending too much money?? Yes, please.

My flight back was on Monday morning at 11:40 am. I was dropped off at the door of the airport by ten ’til eleven, easily. It was until I walked to my concourse security checkpoint that I started to weep, internally. The line for security was about 40-50 people long… It was moving, but slowly. I finally made it to the ONE SINGULAR PERSON checking tickets by 11:25-ish, threw my stuff on the belt for the scanner, and headed for the metal detector, only to be stopped by a TSA agent and told to walk through the body scan thing. Great. This takes another 3-4 minutes of them taking the scan, moving me forward, me waiting right in front of an agent (who proceeds to talk about my eyes and breaking hearts or something lame)(although it did help me relax a bit), the agent getting clearance for the “female” (don’t want to think about the guys working THAT station), and then finally catching up to my stuff as it comes through the scanning-belt thing. Only before my suitcase has come through, I hear “Bottle.” Crap. The lovely agent was referring to the large container of Nutella that I was trying to bring back with me. 

For the record, would you have suspected Nutella as a bomb? No? ME EITHER. It’s not a liquid, it’s not perishable (not like bread or fruit or anything), and it’s sealed. Should be fine, but NOOOOOOO. This is a hazard and we can’t let you take this past this point without checking it or mailing it to yourself for $21.95. (The jar cost about $6 initially.) I said no, I just need to get to my boarding flight, thanks. ( I was afraid to say ‘forget it’ and start running, primarily because being tackled by airport security was NOT factored into my travel plans for the day.) (Keep in mind that it’s about 11:32 at this point and I am most definitely beginning to hyperventilate.)

So the Nutella can’t go through. Fine. Give me my stuff back and we’re cool. 

No? What’s that other jar, you say? Oh, those are gummy multi-vitamins. 

You have to test those to be sure? You don’t know from the millions of other people who come through here annually? Fine. Can I just forget them and go? 

No? You’ll suspect me of leaving a bomb within one of the dime-sized vitamins if I run to catch my BOARDING FLIGHT? Fine. 

What’s that? No radiation emitting off of the Target-brand gummy vitamins? 

Who knew.

For some reason, TSA, we’re not on good terms. Let’s revisit these protocols, k?

So I finally get through that mess and start running down the concourse to my gate, which is, of course, at the opposite end from where I’m at. I all but run into the closed door to the walkway as I see my plane backing up to head toward the runway.

Crap.

I almost start crying as I tell the ticket agent that I’ve never missed a flight before and What am I going to do?? He very calmly tickles his keyboard and moves me to the next flight at 1:15, then tells me it’s going to be okay. I almost kissed him.

So I wait. And I wait. And I wait some more. Finally the gate agent says over the intercom that the 1:15 plane is running behind and they will load us when they can. Great. 

Finally we get boarded, but we didn’t manage to get off the ground until after 2pm. I sat next to someone with no personal boundaries, and just about had my shoulder taken off by the drink cart TWICE because I was leaning so far out into the aisle to get away from his bony elbows that were practically resting on my lap. Ugh…


We landed in Baltimore uneventfully and the shuttle for my parking lot was all but waiting for me as soon as I walked outside. (A great service, by the way. Use Park ‘N Fly if you can. Totally worth the money and cheap if you book in advance online.)

I eventually made it back to WAU around 4:30 feeling very irritable, Nutella-less, and starving, but I did make it back. Of course I left my phone charger and iPod in Dane’s car, so everybody was worried when they didn’t receive texts or answers to their phone calls. Of all the items I could have left (Nutella?),  I had to leave those…


Moral of the story? Don’t approach TSA with logic. They ain’t having it.

(This Public Service Announcement brought to you with love from A Civil Urbanity.)

-Lo
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