It’s really not turning out to be a good Quadra week for me. Just managed to get through the airport in Dubai but only by a cat’s whisker.
When I travel I pack all my vital camera gear into a Peli case which is just the right size for carry-on. That way if my hold luggage goes missing I’m still in business the other end and able to shoot.
The Quadra is one of those items I consider essential (despite trying to toast one of my models yesterday) and as such I had it in my hand luggage. Well it turns out Dubai airport security (possibly hearing of yesterday’s escapades) really weren’t happy with that idea. I’d already been through security once but the second set insisted no Quadra in hand luggage (despite the label on it which says it’s fine) Damn. I had already checked in my hold baggage and technically left Dubai (passport stamped out etc).
So what happens then? Well that’s where it starts to get fun, and goes to show why you should arrive at the airport early. I got escorted back through security, however I couldn’t pass the passport people again with my passport. I’d been stamped as having left the country and as such if I tried to leave again they’d arrest me for entering illegally. Drat.
I ended up having to leave my passport with one of the immigration guys (a very scary thing to do) and be escorted back to check-in. There they continued to insist that I really had to check the battery and as such decided to reclaim my already checked bag. This is where I started to sweat. The only other time I’ve tried to reclaim a bag before flying it resulted in an awful headache of me trying to understand a Frenchman, jumping into a security restricted zone and ultimately almost losing the bag. I got escorted down again almost airside until being stopped at a barrier. “Wait here, it’ll only be 5 minutes,” reassured a security guy as he went to rummage for my bag, “Just give me your boarding pass.”
Okay so 30 minutes later I’m sitting in the bowels of the airport on my own. I’ve lost my passport to upstairs and now somebody has taken my boarding pass. I have no clue where anybody is and technically I’m not actually even meant to be in the country anymore. Hum. Another 10 minutes pass and yes I’ll admit I’m starting to get a little nervous. But finally, voila my bag appears. In goes the Quadra and back though security I get escorted. Luckily I managed to pick up my passport again (just hoping Mosad didn’t manage to clone it) and off I went through a few more sets of security.
After all that I was a touch dehydrated (yeah okay I admit it, I might have been sweating a little at the point they took my passport off me) so I went to Costa. Guess what? Seconds later I get the boarding call for my flight (which requires yet another set of security) and there they remove my nice, cold, airport bought beverage from me
Flying sucks! Well actually I’m lying, I love it really, here’s a few quick snaps a-la-iPhone of my journey. Really amazing what that thing can do. Recognise the view from the plane? It’s actually Iraq and Baghdad. Better hope those engines keep on running and the elections go well!
More adventures soon,