Friday, April 1, 2011

Photographic Terrorist - Frankfurt Airport

Frankfurt Airport again. I was on my way home. This time I had just over two hours to wait. I was a little uneasy as my brother's girlfriend had asked me to buy  400 cigarettes for her brother. I hadn't checked the limits but I have never been stopped coming through customs.
I realised I had to go through security in Frankfurt but as I was only in transit I hoped there would not be a problem. I took out my laptop, took off my jacket and put them through the scanner along with my bag. I then walked through the body scanner and it started to beep. My hand went to my neck, my necklace!
I had been careful to remove it in Bodrum and Istanbul. But now 9 hours later I was tired. I began to remove it, to put it through and walk through the scanner again. However, I was told very abruptly that it was too late and was removed to a booth beside the scanner and thoroughly wanded. I even had to sit down and have my flat pumps checked.
I looked at the conveyor belt and much to my dismay, my bag had been pulled to one side. Those damn cigarettes! I gathered up my laptop and coat and went over to where they had my bag.

Once I confirmed it was my bag, I was asked to open it. Then I was asked where the camera was. I told them it was in the bottom compartment. I opened it and they immediately focused on the zoom lens. By now, another security woman had approached us from behind. I was beginning to get a little nervous. Next she consulted her screen and I was asked where was the flash. That was in the back compartment. She reached in and took out my sat nav. I handed her the flash. The second security guard then told me to follow her and I was brought off to a side room. The flash and lens were swabbed and tested, for explosives I assume. They were then handed back to me and waved on my way. The strange thing is that I had gone through the same checkpoint the previous week, with the same lens and flash without any difficulty.
 The only difference was the 400 cigarettes and they didn't even look at them!

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