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Sunday, September 05, 2010

My name is Bombay Paati and I am not a ...


maybe it should read

"My name is Bombay Paati(grandma) and I am probably on the errorlist!"

The MIL landed here yesterday. Her flight landed at 11:30. As usual went to the airport at 11:30 and by the time I walked to the arrivals area it was 11:45. Usually MIL is the first one to come out because she gets wheelchair assistance. Long flights make her feet swell and an accident has left her ankle buckled.

This time I waited till 12, then 12:30, then 1 then 1:30 and finally started worrying.

What can one do when someone doesn't come out two hours after the flight lands and everyone else seems to have come out?

Who do you call?

Then finally she comes out in a wheel chair at 2:00!

Apparently she was randomly selected for a Department of Homeland Security screening.

The line for people who went for this screening was 1 hour!

Then the guys asked her some routine questions, thoroughly checked her suitcases and said "fine, go."

Some dudes got paid good money for doing this and the tax we pay went towards that good money.

Meanwhile my feet started hurting after standing for 2 1/2 hours in the arrivals area. There are only a handful of seats and they were all taken by elderly people waiting for their loved ones.

Was so glad to be home a good 4 1/2 hours after leaving for the pickup!

Dear DHS agents,

Sari wearing grandmas who cannot walk fast enough do not pose a threat to national security.

Surely, you must have some stats on the number of south Indian grandmas who have successfully done any damage. What does that data tell you? Or does it not matter.

In the meantime someone who really poses a threat would be getting away for lack of scrutiny, because you are too busy questioning grandma, no?

On a side note, I was asked to finish drinking all my water and all my coke at Hong Kong or toss it before getting on a plane. this in spite of my drinking samples of both and showing the search dudes! Granted it was purchased on the coupons Cathay Pacific gave us because of the flight delay, but still a waste of good money, no?

Apparently this is only for US bound flights. All other outgoing flights do not have to go through this.

You surely make us feel very special!

Luckily for us, grandma has been here long enough to not hold this against the US of A. She knows that this is standard operating procedure here, however stupid it might be. In her words, this is nothing compared to how you asked my MIL's MIL (our kids eighty year old great grandma) to take off her Mangalsutra and when she gave you a WTF stare, you insisted on frisking her in a booth!

Oh well, time and a continuous education process for the ways of other cultures will heal all this. They say the world is shrinking. We sincerely hope the USA becomes a nice part of this shrinking world.


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