Monday, May 16, 2016

At The Airport, Bangkok Edition

The security check before my international flight turned into a Marx Brothers routine.

I always pack a few 80 milliliter Listerine bottles of vodka for those long hauls, just to relieve the tedium of sitting around and waiting. It’s legal according to TSA and international rules, as long as the individual containers are 100 milliliters or less and it all fits into one of those plastic bags. Yes, even the vodka part. You can even pack those small whiskey bottles with the labels on if you feel like it. No one had ever said anything before, not in America or anywhere else. Sometimes they make me put it on the tray separately, but that’s it. I’ve always gotten through okay, without a word.

I got through in Bangkok this time too, but only after this give-and-take (all in Thai):

Nice young man: what’s this? (Indicating the bag of little bottles.)

Me: Oh, it’s okay . . . you can do this.

NYM: But what is it?

Me: It’s in the bag, less than 100 milliliters.

NYM: Yeah, but what is it?

Me: I fly all the time. It’s okay . . . America . . . all countries.

(By now there’s three of them, young men and women, all smiling.)

NYM: But what is it?

Me: Medicine.

NYM: Medicine? For the stomach? Not alcohol?

Me: Well, it’s medicine to me.

(Laughs all around.)

NYM: Okay.

It’s kind of amazing, but according to their own rules, while they won’t let you take a 500 milliliter bottle of water through the checkpoint, they will let you take 500 milliliters of water through if you put it in little bottles and put the bottles in the little bag.

That’s how little all of those rules mean. All of that jumping through hoops like a circus dog. It’s all for nothing. 

1 comment:

T Larkin said...

wearing a skirt with sequins to Logan in Boston will get you a feel, skin to skin, and a free xray of one's jelly gift jars. And hand swabbing; "for chemicals" Thanks TSA!