We left Pattaya the same way we arrived, via SUV taxi. This transport was of course booked by my agent (aka, the hubster) via email with The Limo Pattaya. The service both directions was superb. Not only timely but the vehicles were immaculate, air conditioned and the drivers were friendly and efficient. Price points were totally fair. We traveled back via the Intercity Motorway and had zero traffic difficulties. What a huge statement for an area that can easily get bogged down with commuters.
We arrived at Don Mueang International (Bangkok’s other airport) with more than enough time to spare. Age, I hate to say is somehow influencing our calm in airports, or better said, the lack thereof. First, we got in line and our bags were x-rayed and taped as a sign for approved inspection. We stood in a somewhat confusingly formed row, only to eventually be told it was for international travel. Wrong, domestic this time. We were sent on our way to line 9 and 10. Walk, walk, walk. Nope. No 9 and 10. Okay, so now that thing that happens to married people (or at least us) starts to build as we walk, walk, walk with luggage in tow back from whence we came. Frustration, as if either one of us are “responsible” is brewing. But, he is convinced that I heard wrong/didn’t listen well, I of course (Scorpio, remember?) begin rolling my eyes and muttering under my breath while out loud speaking about the lack of need for rushing in what I know is a futile attempt for calm. Boom, there’s the young “trainee”, wrinkling his eyebrows, that had directed us to 9 and 10. He says “no, no, you Chiang Mai, you go line 9 and 10, you go terminal 2, you go line 9 and 10, go, go,walking long way, same floor”. He points and waves to indicate the long way we need to go.We reply to his“Sawadee” salutation and strike out again in the direction he has pointed. (Thank goodness for the amount of English those in customer service in this country are capable of, our Thai language skills are lame at best!) Boom, we are stopped by security…”No, no no, you go terminal 2.” Our screened bag tape is ripped from each bag. The pressure is building, if you are a fly on the wall I am certain you can see it. I begin to attempt to lecture myself back to calm while keeping up with the 6’5″ giant strides of the man I love, grrrrrr. Alas, domestic 9 and 10…at least it was a long walk carrying a heavy load through air conditioned space, not out in the 90% humidity. I actually had fun watching a Chinese dada spinning his toddler girl with cute bonnet in circles while sitting atop his 4 wheeled aluminum style bag while they made their way to terminal 2, such sweet giggles! (I miss my grandboys btw, the magic of children!) Aaaanywaaay, here we are at line 9 and 10. As we patiently wait our turn, (not speaking right now lest we snap) we literally have 2 people jump in line before us and somehow about 6 or 7 sets of people feel they can create an aisle way in front of us to get to 11 and 12, figures, more fuel to the fire. Finally, our passports are checked and we are handed our boarding passes…time to stand in another line. This time for bag check domestic. One bag comes in too heavy, no worries, inside is a backpack with some contents, pulling it out does the trick, no need for paying for an overweight bag which can be quite spendy last minute with Air Asia, as can paying for additional bags after the initial booking. We’re cheapskates at heart so these things we try to avoid. (We justify our cheapskate aspects as the ticket that allows us the flow to take these adventures.) This bag altering has increased the stress only slightly. I’m still befuddled as to why, since we are way ahead of schedule. We proceed in contentious silence to the final line, carry on and personal check to the gate area. I watch my man struggle to find which pocket he stowed his passport in along the way, as well as sense his angst. He is carrying his briefcase with both our laptops and other miscellaneous odds and ends (probably weighs in at about 25 lbs) and that backpack he pulled from the too heavy checked bag. I breeze through since I have the bag on rollers and my oversized purse. (and have not re-stowed the passport) We line up in separate ques. Hallelujah we are going to be able to catch our breath. Grrrrrr! Not so fast. I am pulled to the side on both my bags. Idiot. Forgot to take the bottle of water out of my purse and STUPID, when packing I forgot that the roller bag was not getting checked, it contains forbiddens. They offer the option to check the roller bag. I quickly do the mathematical equation (while feeling my blood pressure shoot back up again) and opt to trash my too many ounce liquids, sad loss of products from home I won’t duplicate exactly here, but cheaper than the last minute checked bag. Back to the line to x-ray again. Holy sh**!! Back to manual inspection table. This time I almost lose my doTERRA emergency kit but my inspectress let’s me off the hook without verifying the weight. I assume she is tired of conversions on ounces to milliliters. My saddest loss this round is my international match collection for my dear friend back home. That and my hands are shaking. Silly, but there’s that self-conscious thing again and whatever the stress thing is that I attribute to aging. I catch my partner in crime out of the corner of my eye as he is repacking at a nearby table. That backpack pull was a good idea except for the sunscreen, mosquito spray and about 6 ounces of leftover Stoli from the night of toasting with the Ruskies at the Pattaya Walking Street restaurant. Ah well, rookies we are I guess, lesson learned, maybe next flight we’ll (really me, that’s my job in these ventures) have our heads on straight when packing :-/ On the bright side, our shoes got to stay on…and it was a wonderfully, short, smooth flight to Chiang Mai, where we feel relaxed once again. Hope this little post brought you a smirk or a laugh Like me on Facebook, follow me on Instagram or Twitter. I’ll keep you in the loop there or subscribe here in time for my next blog post! #travelwithme
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