I had to fly across the country recently.
For me this is akin to a root canal, a hemorrhoid flare up during a heat wave in the south or driving up to a McDonalds in March to get one of those limited edition minty shakes and being told the shake machine is down.
I simply do not like to fly and here I was getting ready to embark on a nine hour journey across the country because a family member needed me for medical reasons.
On the last leg of a three part journey, I was the winner picked to receive an enhanced screening... the extra TSA pat down. Apparently the x-ray machine showed something hidden near my arm/ chest area. I was wearing a loose fitting t-shirt, a pair of light comfortable pants without pockets and flip flops that enjoyed the beach more than these airport triathlons needed to make your connecting flight.
Okay, I have absolutely nothing to hide. The agent seemed to think I did and was rather unfriendly in her demeanor. Her supervisor came over and guided me to the side where I would receive an initial pat down.
I was instructed to hold my hands out straight to my sides, chin up and legs slightly apart. I thought... okay... full body search for something in my chest or arm area. No problem! I haven't been felt up since high school by a date who was just a little too eager for me to enjoy an encounter.
As the supervisor watched, the gloved agent started at my ankle and did a weird back handed swipe up and down my legs like she was tracing those golden arches with broken shake machines.
Then she started on my left wrist and moved toward my arm pit, where she looked at her supervisor suspiciously. She moved over the area a couple more times and asked "Do you have something in your shirt?" I said no and then realized what she was talking about. I asked her to point to where she was concerned.
I started laughing. She was not impressed.
"That would be one of my girls, apparently after latching my bra and sometime along the flights that one escaped like a squid out of a fish tank!"
The supervisor giggled a little.
I didn't want the others in line watching this happen to feel like these agents over reached or even pissed me off so I continued...
"If you do not believe me feel free to just push it back in there, like squeezing a biscuit back into a can that popped on the seam. No need to be gentle, we have let each other down and our relationship is complicated nowadays"
The agent stepped away and shooed me back into line... "ma'am just GO get your bags!" In the most salty tone possible.
All I can say is that during my flight there and home... that experience was the highlight of my dreaded air travel.