I just wanna go home!
Back in 2005, I spent almost 7 months in Europe. Studying, traveling, partying and eating, I was indeed ready to go back home after an abundance of all those things! But just when you think you’re right around the corner of your house, you get a surprise!
If you have a good memory, you’ll remember that the London metro bombings took place on July 5 of 2005. To my luck, my flight back home was departing from London at the end of July 2005. Being in Rome at the time, I headed to Fiumicino airport stress-free and excited to go home. Right before boarding the plane, I was asked to stay aside and wait. So that’s exactly what I did. And I waited. And waited. Until a security guard approached me and searched me. As a solo female flyer, I found it a little odd but didn’t think anything of it when they searched me. My flight finally arrived in London at 1Am. Tired and poor, I resorted to sleeping in Heathrow Airport. I’ve slept in a few airports in the past, and let me tell you that it’s no fun. But when you’re broke, you’re broke! So I found a spot where a few other backpackers were also sleeping, layed my backpack on the floor and slowly fell asleep. Believe it or not, I fell asleep for a few hours, or until I suddenly got woken up. Until I suddenly woke up to the sounds of an unattended luggage placed only a few meters away from me. Half asleep, half lost, I was asked to evacuate the airport and wait outside.
Alone with thousands more people to my side, I was annoyed. Annoyed because not only was I tired, but I still had 8 more hours to wait at the airport and I simply wanted to go home. Go home to my bed, to my shower, to my family and friends! Standing outside of the airport, by myself with all these thoughts going through my head, I felt like crying! But, I quickly made myself get over it. After about 30 minutes of standing outside, we were given the green light to enter the airport yet again. It was a false alarm. Fiew!
So once I entered the airport again, I couldn’t go back to sleep. I wandered around the airport, ate, wandered around some more, read… until all 8 hours passed! And finally, the time for me had arrived to check in my luggage. So that’s exactly what I did. And waited a little more. Waited until it was time to board the plane. Excited to finally be boarding the plane, knowing I was now only 6 hours away from home! But again, I was asked to get on the side. I found this really odd. And couldn’t understand why I kept on getting searched. Until I realized it was because I was tanned. Was this a case of discrimination or simply security? I’m not sure. But I just wanted to go home!