I love airports. They have a magical zest to them. There is a contagious energy in the air – it’s full of anticipation of where you’re going, and for some, the excitement of where they have been.  My favorite airport memories are back before 9/11 when you could walk your loved one to the gate, hug them goodbye and watch the plane roll away.  While waiting I’d watch people exiting planes and the homecomings, squeals and hugs from those awaiting their arrival.   I felt happy because they were so happy. Kinda weird, ok maybe?

I’m traveling to Cleveland, OH this week for work. Half of me is super excited since as you now know, I dig airports. The other side of me cringes because things are not easy.

Got bags?  

Normally, you bring a suitcase. I can’t walk on crutches and pull a suitcase so I need help with that.  If you can walk and pull a suitcase, you are so stinkin’ lucky. I’d love to be you for a day.  Oh and to be a person who can wear cute heels, pull a suitcase and talk on the phone at the same time….well you’re my hero but I also might hate you a little out of jealousy.  {wink}

Hello security.

My crutches have to go through the conveyor belt metal detector with the bags. They always ask me to walk without them through the scanner but the staples in my foot set the buzzer off. I don’t even bother anymore. I tell them I need to be patted down instead.  With my luck, it is always a man working and he shouts “female assist” since he can’t touch me.  The people around me look annoyed since I’m slowing down the line.  Typically, a super busy, sweaty lady pulls me over and pats me down head to toe. She then proceeds to run my shoes through the detector and swab my hands to run a test to see if I have touched any explosive materials.  It’s obnoxious and embarrassing, but I appreciate safety and wouldn’t want it any other way once I’m up in the sky. Keep on patting us down security friends.

I’m no track star.

Airports tend to be huge. Yeah, I could take a wheelchair but that feels lazy. Exercise is good for me. But let’s face it, I am lazy so I hate every second of it. This trip is just for the day so I don’t need a suitcase which removes obstacle number one. I’m thankful for that.

However, I’m bringing my work laptop which is a heavy beast. It really isn’t that bad when hauling it between work and home but doing a marathon airport walk will be different. It’s hard to explain…basically the backpack weighs down my shoulders, which makes me lean harder on my crutches. I resist not hurting my arms by standing straighter and I get tired.  I told myself I should fill my backpack with a gallon of milk or two and walk around the neighborhood to get strong.

That’s as far as I ever got. 

When I started my job I requested the lightest computer they had but didn’t want to be picky. I was just thankful I scored my position and I didn’t want to be a high maintenance employee. I’m hoping after a few years and I’ve done my time I can see what else they have that is lighter.  Well, just in case my backpack milk exercises fall through.

What is traveling like for you? I am guessing that getting a wheelchair through security and on a plane is no picnic. I’d love to hear your story too!

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3 thoughts on “airports

  1. Oh man! I would have loved for the opportunity to attend and meet you. I am only going for the day early this week – flying in at 7am and back at home by 9pm. If you can take some pics for FB that would be awesome!


  2. Me in a manual chair, my uncle with a metal hip and foot and my dad with a walking stick with every medication possible in his hand luggage! The fun we have at the airport. I have one memory at the airport which I will never forget! At the time it really wasn’t funny but now as a family we do have a good laugh at nearly being branded as a terrorist! We were at security and while my dad and uncle were answering 100 questions on why my dad looked like he was going to open a pharmacy in Spain and why my uncle was practically made of metal, I was being patted down and my chair was being swabbed. Unfortunately my chair failed the test and had to be tested again and again but kept failing and apparently had traces of a chemical that could be made in to a bomb and the next thing I know the special police (probably have a better official name but cant remember) with machine guns came running towards us. All I could think of was oh god we are going to miss our flight!!! After half an hour of constant questioning it came up that my uncle was doing some weed killing in our front garden and some of the chemicals got on to my chair. We learnt a lesson that day which my uncle has taken very seriously – don’t do any weed killing!! The main problem I have is extra leg room on a flight. It does not matter how many times I tell them before I travel they NEVER have it booked so I have to be shown my seat, stick my legs out (because I cant bend them) until they realise no one is going to be able to walk down the aisle which at that point they have to ask someone who has paid extra for the extra leg room seat to swap with me. This really does get mine and my family’s back up as we feel like the bad guys for making people move but all they have to do it pre book it and this will be avoided!!


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