|Irene in Red Rock Canyon, Nevada, having survived the knife incident.|
I couldn't believe my eyes as I watched the officer in security at the Victoria International Airport slowly pulling a very large kitchen knife from my carry on bag.
What?! Is this a joke??
It was about 4:30 a.m. and my husband and I were on our way to Las Vegas for a few days for a little get away. We had decided not to bring our suitcases and just stuffed everything into carry on bags instead, careful to put shampoo bottles and toothpaste and anything else like it into clear, plastic ziplock bags just as the instructions tell you to do. Nothing to hide.
I had been picked out randomly to be either patted down or go through that full body scanner contraption, and I had chosen the pat down. In the meantime, my bag was slowly going through the x-ray machine. Once the pat down was done I walked over to retrieve my bag. "We're going to have to open your bag and check it," the security officer said. "Sure, go ahead." I casually answered. I looked around to see where my husband was, and then looked back as the officer was pulling out the knife. Knife?? Then he pulled out a carving fork. Carving fork?? I stared at the implements in a stupor. "Obviously, we can't allow these on the plane." Oh. My. God. I looked over at my husband. "Irene!" he said, staring at me in compete shock.
It took me a few more seconds to shake off the brain fog before I suddenly remembered.
I had hurriedly stuffed the kitchen implements into a side pocket in my bag a few months earlier in the middle of my parents' move out of their townhouse, and had completely forgotten about them. Since I never go into that side pocket, I hadn't even opened it when I was packing for Vegas.
I looked up at the security officer, but he didn't seem all that perturbed. "Do you want to put them in your car or something?" he asked. "No, no, just get rid of them." I said, relieved that I hadn't been arrested, or something worse. He took them and handed me my bag. I was still stunned as I walked toward the door, where another female security officer stood. "I had to stop from laughing!" she said, and continued on to tell me how many people often forget what they've got in their bags and get caught at security. "It happens all the time," she smiled. Yeah, but not to me! I thought.
And so began our adventure to Vegas. It took me an hour or two to get over that one. One older lady who was on the same flight as we were, eyed me suspiciously several times while we waited at the gate. I saw her go up to the flight desk at one point, and wondered if she had asked where I was sitting. Or maybe that was just my imagination.
And Vegas? How to describe Vegas? It was our first trip there, and many of you reading this have likely visited Sin City already. I'll save THAT story for next time :-)