Leaving London Stansted early this morning I’m currently at Oslo Gardermoen airport
waiting for my connecting flight to Hovdebygda. I am annoyed that the terrorists have won
and that I have to suffer the stigma that flying has turned into. Not being able to take
a plastic bottle of water through the security check is simply disgraceful.
Don’t get me wrong—I’m sympathetic to concerns about the ability to smuggle liquid
explosives using food containers. But why is it that as soon as I’m through the security
check I can still buy all the ingredients for a Molotov Cocktail? Not to mention glass
bottles that can be broken and used to make a primitive knife (just wrap one end of an
elongated shard in a scarf or belt you bought at one of the many clothes pushers).
The retailers are laughing all the way to the bank of course. They are in a stronger
position than ever before to sell their goods. After the strict enforcement of a single
piece of (smaller) hand-luggage per person everyone that comes through the security check
is guaranteed to have at least one hand free to carry their waiting lounge shopping.
It seems to me that the new security restrictions is a lot of hassle for very little
actual gain. If I was a more conspiratorial person I might suggest that is was just
scare-mongering—it has worked well in the past to cover up or downplay other issues.
It’s probably just as well that my lack of political wherewithal makes me completely
unable to think of what could be worth covering up. (Oh, wait! Did you see how well that
A couple hours later: Adding insult to injury, I was just told at the security check
that I could not take the two half-litre bottles of Cognac that I bought at the Stansted
tax-free through. Apparently the plastic bag was supposed to be sealed; the bottles still
being unopened and me showing the receipt fazed them not at all.
On advice from the airline’s customer service desk I ended up stuffing the bottles in my
laptop bag and checking that in as a separate item of hold luggage (after first taking my
laptop out—I’m not crazy). Now let’s hope the bottles don’t break.
Two hours hence: Well, crap. This really isn’t my day. It has now transpired that my
plane is more than two and a half hours delayed. Of course, my spare battery and charger
is still in the laptop bag that I checked in earlier.
Not posted until I got home as two hours of wireless internet at Oslo airport cost the
same as my regular internet provider charge me for 14 days worth. I got a final slap in
the face when I finally arrived at the final airport; my computer bag had been sent
elsewhere. For some reason it had been checked in under the wrong name, and the person
that name belonged to was not going to visit my parents. Imagine that.