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Location:near Houston, Gulf Coast, United States

Conservatively liberal, moderately well-educated, and highly opinionated...

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Saturday, November 26, 2005

Traveling the "No Fly" Way

Ahhh… home again.

Travel is wonderful (I’ve always loved it), but it's always nice to return to those familiar little things, like one’s own quirky shower settings, or a bed that gives a full night’s sleep.

Tonight, I’m especially glad to be home – because until we were actually on the plane leaving Boston, I wasn’t certain we’d be allowed to board. In fact, I waited to write this blog until after that very fact… just in case.

You see, this Thanksgiving, we got our first “up close and personal” introduction to the Department of Homeland Security – in the way of the “No Fly List”. Nope – wasn’t me. It wasn’t my husband, either. Instead, it was the little urchin I gave birth to nine (plus) years ago. Our daughter.

I’ve read about this kind of silliness many times: sombody's little infant or child who was on that infamous list. It has always been an academic exercise prior to now, but I can hardly express how bizarre it was when the ticketing agent at the airline showed us - right there on her computer screen - why we were having such trouble getting boarding passes.

The good news is that there are humans who are apparently empowered to look at a small child and see that she is obviously not the person the government fears. Even better news is that the agent's judgment apparently carried over to the return trip, and we didn't have to repeat the exercise.

The bad news, of course, is that we had the problem at all – and next week I expect to get “up close and personal” with a Senator or two.

Yup – I still love to travel, but tonight we’re very glad to be home.