In the last couple of years I’ve started traveling a lot more than I used to. I can’t really comment about the way things used to be before nine-eleven, but most people know how it is now-a-days in airports going through “security”. There’s a lot of screening, waiting in line, removal of clothing, and when going international, there’s even paperwork. With all this in mind, I would like to introduce a phenomenon I would like to call the traveling “invisibility cloak”.
Think of it as an aura that surrounds a person and, like Harry Potter maneuvering around the corridors of Hogwarts, allows a person to pass through check points virtually undetected. However, unlike the cloak of our wizarding wonder, this is not an heirloom handed down from father to son. It is something you either have, or you don’t and I, of course, seem to have it.
I first noticed it earlier this year when I traveled outside the US to Mexico. On this particular trip I was going to Puerta Vallarta with three of my dearest friends, and there were more check points than I was used to. In line after line I seemed to pass through with not so much as a sideways look from any agents or even other passengers. Oh sure, I still had to remove my shoes and go through the motions, but it was smooth sailing. I was never pulled out of line for a random search or made to walk through the metal detectors twice. This also seemed to extend to my bags as they too passed through without incident. On my way home from Mexico, as my three friends were being questioned quite seriously by TSA, the gentleman who looked at my passport merely winked at me and told me to enjoy my day.
The very next trip I took was also international, but this time I was alone. Two weeks across the Atlantic and within that, several plains, trains, and automobiles crossing borders. This time, I decided to “test” the limits of my new found “invisibility”. I began bending the rules by maintaining metal on my person as I walked through scanners and not filling out paperwork in it’s entirety. My ultimate challenge was to get a full carton of milk from Dublin to Omaha. Truth be told, the container was confiscated in Atlanta, and though I am sure the milk had soured by then, the results of my experiment were still sweet. I was able to prove time and time again, that I was indeed an invisible traveler.
A few days ago I flew home from Dallas Texas and was once again reminded of how great this works out for me as I coasted through security with ease. Upon further analysis, I consider that some might attribute this phenomenon to the way I look or the fact that I can be as unassuming as a baby bunny, but I fancy the notion that I have acquired some sort of special “ability”. Either way, I plan to continue the current trend of frequent traveling in the hopes that people will someday call me “the girl who lived!”