Wednesday 8 May 2013

Working in Ottawa today --Pastry Mule

Good morning folks,

In a slight twist to my normal routine, I am working in Ottawa today and Montréal tomorrow.

while I passed through security today..

My heart is beating fast, Billy Hayes said to tape it under your arms, "they never look there, you'll be fine!".  A few more steps into the security line, a man says something to me but I can't understand him, his English is worse than my Turkish. The sweat running down his face makes me think that he won't notice mine, but his eyes seem to examine my very thoughts, drilling into my mind.  I try to keep my breath steady, repeating a mantra of "hey man, it's all good, they don't know, stay chilled." in my mind.  He motions me to the left, to keep moving.

My mind wanders back to yesterday, it was a great day, Jennifer made Phil, Sharlene and I dinner to close off my b-day, and as we left for home, she called in a marker, "can you please take this to Kelly?".  "But.." I stammered, "they will likely stop me, each are more than 100 grams, and they really do possess gel like qualities.  They aren't like a daffodil you know.".

I place my gear into one of the trays, it all looks innocent enough, keys, a ring bound notebook, a tablet, and a pen and my phone.  I have the extra package with me and I uneasily slip it into the tray.  I wish it were still winter or even the cool of first spring when I might have a light jacket to casually but deliberately toss over the items in vain camouflage.  But no.  All items remain in full view.

The next security agent is a woman, I recognize her from trips past.  I have stood here more than one hundred times before, all a dress rehearsal for today, for this moment.. I wonder how loud the beating in my chest is, it fills my ears.. drowning out the  incessant chatter from the other travelers.  My plan is to engage her eyes, to distract her with light banter about how Spring is finally here.

"What is that?", she snaps.  "w-what?" I ask, more like Vinny Ba-Ba-Barino now than Billy Hayes.  "That in your tray" my mind races and I wonder what music will be playing through this scene in the movie they make of my detainment and struggle..

"Better watch your back
'N cover your tracks
Kick your foot through the door
Hit the deck, know the score
They're taken by surprise
And here's mud in your eye.."

Her gaze is steady and unrelenting. "Those pastries, what are they?" .. I am caught in the crosshairs, there is no escape.  "Mini peach pies.. tarts" I explain, "but they are not for sharing, I am on a delivery mission, I am a mere pastry mule.".

The next moments are a blur, there is a furry of security activity, much wailing of sirens, alarms, and sounds of men in boots surrounding the area from all angles and approaches.  I become Omega-man as my training takes over, I am a willow in the wind.

The calm returns once I am in my seat, my watch tells me that I have lost 5 minutes,

My phone lights up, "did you get pies through?" I simply reply, "it was a cakewalk".

Have a good day, embellish when possible,