Photo by Carrie Thomas
I hadn't slept all night when I arrived at LaGuardia Airport at 5am to catch my 7am flight to Kansas City. I arrived 2 hours before the scheduled departure, thinking it would be enough time to make it through security.
I hadn't counted on the fact that coils of people in snakelike lines had wrapped their way around the check-in area and that these people were all waiting for self-check-in.
Self-Check-in by the way is an aspect of airline travel disguised as a means of conveniently and efficiently checking in that is actually just a means of getting around hiring and paying competent, knowledgeable employees to interact with people. God forbid.
I unfortunately had luggage to check. This meant that after self-check-in, I had to fight my way into an angry crowd of people who might as well have been lepers begging for Jesus action. Instead they were all intently focused on one Indian woman with a baby voice who was whispering people's names for the tags that go on their luggage. Of course people were screaming at her to speak louder which just made it harder to hear her inaudible mumblings which could have been "Johnson" or "German" or "Sherman" for that matter.
There were two other women behind the counter typing. What they were typing? Who knows. People were yelling at the two women in outrage of the fact that the only person calling names was our baby voiced Indian woman, god bless her poor ragged soul.
At this moment of sleep deprived confusion, my cellphone rang with a call from my mother. I pick up the phone and very abruptly tell her that I can't talk, I can't hear her over the yelling and that I will have to call her back.
After finally getting my luggage tag, paying $25 because my bag is too heavy and then hauling my own fricking bag to the x-ray area, because apparently I'm a part-time employee for American Airlines, I was ready to get into a 2nd line for security.
This is the only time in my life that I thank god for being born without any pigment to my skin because let's face it, they aren't butt searching blond boys. If you think for a second there isn't racial profiling in our nation's airports, then think again. If your skin is a shade shy of beige, they'll snap on a latex glove and bend your black ass over so fast, you'll be whistling dixie and wondering where your false tooth went before you know what hit ya.
After 2 hours of torturous waiting,herding, prodding, and the always lovely searching of my personal belongings, I was given the privilege of getting onto a crowded plane bound for Kansas City. I call my mother who is now crying because I apparently bit her head off.
This is the beginning of my wondrous Christmas journey to Kansas.
(to be continued)