Airport Dress Codes and Amazonian Women

“Oh my Gaauud! Excuse me!? Gauuud, you’d think if people were going to bring their kids to the airport they’d at least keep a hold of them, sheesh!”

She’s a tall Amazonian woman, her hair is shiny, too blonde and with dark roots. She has to be ten or fifteen years older than me. I turn to see the commotion and am confronted with her overbearing size and her huge mouth just an arms length from my face. Dental implants on one side of her mouth leave her with a silvery hue to her teeth and gums.

In one hand I have my preschooler’s tiny mitt, I’m half dragging him, he’s in a trance. His third birthday is in two days and we are headed home, back to the west-coast from North Carolina. We’ve been up since 4:30 a.m.

“EXCUSE ME, move out of the way please!”

She is pushing a charming looking blue-hair in an airport wheelchair. This says to me that sweet blue-hair Betty can walk, she’s just slow or can’t walk far enough or fast enough to make her gate. I scan around them and find the reason for her (amazon woman’s) conniption. It’s my other child. Of course it is.

“I’m sorry,” I say, turning toward them, all three of out carry on’s in one hand/arm and a coffee, (come on, I just told you I have been traveling since before dawn…I’ll probably have a coffee in my hand all day, every chance I get.) I know she can’t tell I’ve had four hours of sleep or been traveling for five hours with two kids, alone, but she can tell I have my hands full. Don’t worry, she is one of those lovely people who doesn’t suffer from being overly conscience.

She barges past us, rubbing my leg with Betty’s wheelchair and continues berating people who let their children wander all over the place. Who knows, maybe she’s not referencing me and mine, since he’s right on my heels and we are too tired to more than amble, no running here.

I’ve never been to Minneapolis airport before, this is a first for me. I like it. I like it’s flow, like all the kiddos dressed up on their way to Disney World, iPads on all the tables and an overhead sound system that actually works…or I’ve been in too many airports this summer and can now understand microphone mumble…it’s all good, and as crabby pants Amazonian disappears I can’t help but wonder what’s made her so intolerant of people and if she was that way before she began working at a large international airport, if her work has effected her this way. Who can say…it is one of the things I like about airports.

There’s nowhere else in the world you can go like an airport. You have to have a ticket to someplace to see the good stuff, the diversity and how people function and behave when they are with a bunch of people they’ll never see again.

Mostly they are nice. Nicer than they have to be, liberated that they don’t have to become your best friend or they are desperate for friendship or excited for some adventure on their horizon. Some are ambivalent; if you leave me alone, I’ll leave you alone…All of them have just left behind who the world thinks they are back at
a security gate. Now they can be whatever they want: Important, Happy, Powerful, Funny, Brave, Anonymous, Confrontational, Sweet, Strong, Cool…Smart…

The people are great but sometimes the outfits are even better. I love the traditional garb of exotic foreign countries and other cultures but the most entertaining are the ludicrously “exotic” from our own country. (Mr. orange plaid shorts, khaki loafers with pink socks, pink pollo shirt–tucked in–and Kelly green cardigan thrown over your shoulders.) Yeah, I’m talking to you. That was awesome.

Maybe there should be an airport dress code; 1- dress “up” in something you Love that is Fancy 2- wear your favorite t-shirt from a destination OR with some witty commentary. It should be considered a service to those of us stuck for several hours in layovers that seem to drag on forever!

As to my new Amazon friend? No she wasn’t wearing anything exciting, but I can think of some fun ideas for airport support staff…more on that later. We are finally boarding. 🙂

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