Have Luggage, Will Travel …. Or ….. I’m Getting On A Plane And Left My Brain At Home (Part One)

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I’ll let that sink in for a few moments.


I spend a lot of time in airports.
I see a lot of strange things.
Strange people.
Doing strange things.

No, I’m not one of them.
I’m not!

Ok, maybe a little.

But I figured out that people can be completely ‘normal’ functioning human beings until they step into airports and onto a plane.

Particularly three places in an airport and in a plane:
1. The Check-in Counters
2. The Security Check
3. In the plane.

Today, we’ll talk about the first place:
The Check-In Counter

Perhaps it’s because I travel more than most people because of my job, that I’ve come to expect everyone to have the same knowledge as me.

But they don’t.
It’s no excuse.
Really it isn’t.

There is a baggage allowance for ever person and most of us don’t have the luxury of always travelling business or first class so we have the standard 20kgs we’re allowed to take.

Some travellers, such as the one I experienced,  like to take that on as a challenge.

“Let’s see how many things we can get into this suitcase, pretend it’s 20kgs, strap five bag straps around it to keep it closed while we sit on it to squash it down and check it in. What’s the problem!”

Now,  I mean it’s really not my issue and people should do what people are gonna do …… BUT …. It’s pretty darn obvious to me that if your suitcase doesn’t really close, no matter how many of those bag straps you tie around it, it ain’t gonna be within the baggage allowance limit.


Said travellers will still look completely shocked when the check-in assistant says “sorry ma’am your bag is 31kgs” …..(never mind the issue of the no-closing-fully-overloaded bag) …

“Oh dear, are you sure?” They say.
“Yes Ma’am”
“Are you sure your scales are right?” They question.
“Yes Ma’am”
“Can you test my bag on a different scale? I’m sure yours isn’t right.” They try their luck.
“Sure ma’am (said through ‘the customer is always right’ gritted teeth), bring it on over to the next counter”

Traveller pulls said suitcase off scale and, with the help of the extended family who have come to wish her a safe journey, they each take a corner and drag it, huffing and puffing, the clearly 20kgs (!!!) suitcase over to the next counter.

All working together, they count the lift in “1…2…3…LIFT” and put the clearly 20kgs onto the scale at the next counter.

Shock!! Horror!!

“Ma’am, as you’ll notice, the scale is the same as the first”
“I really can’t believe it. Our scale at home said 18kgs. Can we try one more?” They say in disbelief.
(I want their scale for my weekly weigh-in….13kgs under…awesome!)
“I’m afraid not ma’am, there is a long queue of people trying to check-in.Your bag is 31kgs on this scale, on the last scale and on any scale in this airport.”

Traveller realises they aren’t going to get anywhere with this super-savvy check-in assistant.

Traveller pulls said suitcase off scale and, with the help of the extended family who have come to wish her a safe journey, they each take a corner and drag it, huffing and puffing, the clearly 20kgs (!!!) suitcase over to the original counter.

All working together, they count the lift in “1…2…3…LIFT” and put the clearly 20kgs onto the scale at the original counter.

Traveller now has to open the offending suitcase….. first carefully removing the five bag straps they’ve put around it to try to keep it closed,while carefully ensuring none of their “intimates” fly out when the suitcase bursts open with freedom in mind …. And take stuff out.

They’re oblivious to the growing queue behind them and the sound of tapping feet and huffs and puffs ….. Probably from frequent travellers, like me, who are thinking …. “Seriously??.”

They hand 13kgs of their suitcase content to the extended family, and continue to check-in, still grumbling under their breath that airport baggage scales are shockingly overweight!

The check-in person is a saint.

As I’m heading through security, I see the extended family helping the traveller put all those 13kgs back into her hand luggage and in her handbag.

I’m taking a different queue.

Come back for Part 2: The Security Check!


Boogers Etiquette

This post may reference bodily functions.
You have been warned.
You’re welcome.

Now let me get on it

So there I was, innocently blowing my nose after having sneezed for the 100th time today, when the new dude in the office sneaks up on me to introduce himself.

He’s clearly seen I’m blowing my nose.
Not so much blowing than wiping.

But he’s been hovering behind me for so long that if he doesn’t say “hello” now, he’ll just look like a weird stalker.
Which I wouldn’t mind to be honest. It’s been years since I was last stalked. Many years. Many Many years.
In fact, how old am I? …. ……. ………… Yip — that’s how many years. (You thought I was going to spill my age just like that … without you even buying me a drink first? …. Sneaky Sneaky! Very Sneaky! Sneak!

But I digress.


“Hello” (in a voice that is clearly worried he may give me a heart-attack, coz he’s been hovering forever while I sorted my bodily functions out)

“Oh, hi, hello”

Scrunches grimey … grimy… grimie …. dirty tissue deep into the palm of my hand.

….then realise, that’s the hand I need to put out to shake his outstretched hand ….

….which he’s also realised and quickly, but efficiently withdraws said hand before I infect him with said tissue.

He proceeds to talk work with me, which I’m trying my best to focus on, but am seriously concerned that my tissue didn’t quite get all of it.

We should have automatic playback in our eyes for situations like this.

I have no idea what he asked me to do, but I have a funny feeling I may just have agreed to give a presentation. In front of people. Actual people.

Blast you Boogers!!




Why Yes …. It Has Been A While…..And???

“Good Morning Ma’am”


“Can I speak to Mr. Smelly please?”


“Can I speak to Mr. Smelly please?”

“I think you have the wrong number.”

(giggle from the other side of the phone)

“Okay, thank you. Bye”


Was I just pranked????

And worse …. do I smell? 🙂


Mothers …. And Other Lovely ‘Stuff’

So. Picture it. (I’ll refrain from adding ‘Sicily 1922’ for all the Golden Girls fans)

Toiletry aisle of local shop.Warm July afternoon.

Task: picking a new body washParticipants: mother and daughter

Mother ” I want a new body wash”

Daughter “OK.what about this one?”

Mother “Don’t like blue”

Daughter “Huh? The colour doesn’t make the smell. What about this one?”

Mother “It’s yellow”

Daugher “And?”

Mother “Don’t like yellow”

Daughter “Mom! The colour doesn’t make the smell! So how about this one then? It smells great”

Mother “Don’t like it”

Daughter “What???Why not?”

Mother “It’s green”

Daughter “It’s gre..!!!  Are you kidding me? The colour doesn’t make the sm…”

Mother “I like this one”

Daughter “But it’s blue”

Mother “And?”

Daughter “Seriously?”

Mother “This one doesn’t smell like chemicals”

Daughter “(sigh) OK, Great! Sounds good. Put it in the trolley then”

Mother “mmmm”

Daughter “Mom?”

Mother “Well… ”

Daughter “I’m listening”

Mother “Don’t like the shape of the bottle”

Daughter “……. I’m going to get the eggs”

Technology…or Say What?

So, Credit to my whacked older brother-from-the-same-mother (although I do wonder sometimes!!)

“I’ll forward the email you sent to my work address (of which I get a copy on my Blackberry) to my HTC using my Blackberry but I’ll convert it to a text message (a feature of the Blackberry) and then I should be able to click on the link in the SMS and open the attachment to view the webpage on my HTC using GPRS/3G/HSDPA/Wireless!!”

Trying to understand the big wide world of technology!!

Maybe not enough work my dear brother?

Just saying!

Neighbourhood Watch…Or Not

So, there I was standing outside the same shop where I saw the crazy man with no pants just a few days ago. That shop clearly has some sort of magic-weird-trouble-crazy-attraction thing going on!

Anyway, where was i? Ah yes, the shop.

So it was another early morning, and there i was, waiting for the shop doors to opens so I could buy some breakfast.

I wasn’t alone.
There were a number of other early birds waiting with me. Each one of them trying really hard to not look as tired as they felt so early in the morning.

I was happily warbling away (in my head) to the music on my iPod, when I glanced across the street, and noticed, what I thought, was a friendly wave between two friends departing each others company.

It wasn’t.

Now I have been known to have the nickname “Neighbourhood-Watch-Girl” (I believe it was meant as a term of endearment). No really, it was!

Anyway, as I cast my ever-suspicious eyes across the road, I noticed that it was, in fact, a war of words between a group of youngsters (I have other words for them, but they may read this and I’m scared of them), and a “grown-up” man.

Well, it began to escalate and before I knew it, the young lad was throwing punches …. and traffic cones …. at the “old” man (ok he wasnt old – maybe 35) and gyrating his hips at him in a “threatening manner”.

So of course, being Neighbourhood-Watch-Girl, I was having none of it! I pulled out my mobile, and dialled the emergency number. (I know! Brave huh).

As I waited for the call to connect, I kept a watchful eye on the aggressive, cone-throwing, gyrating trouble-maker.

When, in my ear I heard “You have no new messages”

Having lived in this country for almost 10 years, you would think I know that 911 is NOT the emergency number but rather…My Voicemail Number!

Clearly the world needs more than Neighbourhood-Watch-Girl.

I’ve cancelled my fitting for my super-hero outfit.

Love It…Or Not

So, Ikea! Now there is a great way to waste an entire day.

Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE LOVE LOVE Ikea. But sometimes, my visits don’t quite go the way I plan.

We had just moved into our new home. We’d spent the whole weekend in Ikea buying sofas and wardrobes and cushions and cutlery and, …..Swedish meatballs. So, by the time we’d built every flatpack up, we were exhausted.

But we also realised we didn’t have enough wardrobe handles!


So on Monday, after a 10hour day at work, I got in the car, and drove back to Ikea.

Should’ve taken 25minutes, took me 45.
Rush-hour traffic! Now there’s another fun topic which I won’t delve into now.

Eventually, I got there. I knew exactly where the handles were, went to the right department – at least I thought it was. Wardrobe handles with the wardrobes right?


Eventually I found them.
In the Kitchen Area!
Of course? That makes perfect sense!

So I tucked the handles under my arm, put on my determined face, and carefully started the winding journey to the Pay Area.

Now if you’ve ever been to Ikea, You’ll know that there are “secret” doors and paths and shortcuts everywhere!

I couldn’t find my way to the Pay Area.

Eventually after getting back to the Kitchen Area, (where you can pick up wardrobe handles) for the third time, I despaired, sucked it up, and asked 2 staff members for directions.

They clearly saw the desperate look on my pleading face.

And then decided they would toy with me!

They pointed in a direction and said “just through there” I sighed in relief and followed the direction of their point.

They lied.

It was obviously “Annoy-TheFrinkleFiles-Day” and someone forgot to give me the memo.

One hour!

That’s how long it took me to get from tucking the handles under my arm, to the actual checkout points!

And it wasn’t even busy!

And I didnt stop on the way.

You’ve never known lost until you can’t find your way out of an Ikea store.