I am less than fit. I am also less than slim and sleek, and checking in at the airport means there is a serious amount of walking to be done. With baggage.

Add to that my dislike (read: fear) of official people in uniforms, and you’ll picture just how sweaty and fidgety I am. 

Nervous. Sweaty. Unable to make eye contact because fear of Passport Control Woman who does not crack a smile. 

I survive the customary gauntlet and move through to the boarding gates. 

I am sopping wet. Rivulets of perspiration blind me as I go in search of a gift shop to buy some handkerchiefs. But what is this fresh hell…? NO handkerchiefs to be bought anywhere! 

Obviously handkerchiefs are an unfashionable relic of an oppressive patriarchy and no premium purveyor of tax-free goods would be caught dead selling them. 

But I need something…anything! So I opt for a scented towel and make my way to the waiting area…

…where it turns out the scented towel comes with bath salts:

Really? Seriously?! A packet of white crystals??? You have got to be joking! 

Now I am desperately trying not to look like a sweaty, nervous drug smuggling reprobate! 

Cue more sweating. MUCH more sweating. And nervous glances. Who saw me? Did anyone see me? Where are the cameras? Am I being watched, marked, fed into Interpol’s system of scurrilous cons?! 

I calmly (well I think it’s calmly, at least on the outside) stand up and walk slowly over to a bin, and turf the non-contraband-that-looks-like-contraband. Shit. I left my hand luggage unattended. 


Cue more sweating. 

“Please do NOT blow up my Mac!” I silently plead as I try NOT to sprint back to my seat.

I sit. I breathe deeply. At least I have this stupid towel to deal with the sweat, and failing that, to bury my face in shame as the narcs drag me off to an ignominious fate. 

People travel for fun, apparently.

© Dave Luis 2016. All Rights Reserved. 


8 thoughts on “Scurrilous Customs

  1. I just had a good guffaw, Dave. As I read this my mind drifted to what I must look like at foreign airports greeting all the officials like they’re my long-lost buddies when they look at my passport. At me. Back at my passport. Back at me (like the men’s perfume ad with the dude on a white horse). This is a script for a mini movie 😀

  2. This is hillarious. This is why travelling with kids is in a way, so much better. They distract the hell out of everyone, including you, so that one doesn’t have time to focus on the officials and the fact that they look at every person like they are a criminal.

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