Suspicious glare of the customs officer
Moving snail like in a long queue is daunting enough, let alone facing the solemn, suspicious glare of the customs officer as he or she fingers through our passport, visa and declaration card. Not to mention the next stage, emptying pockets, voiding bodies of footwear, belts and bling. Then the x-rays. If the dogs leave us be and luggage is lucky enough not to have succumbed to a random check, then we are free to go if we can find the way out. Help is often out of the question because it is with the troubled people ahead of us.
On one occasion, during a barrage of questions from a law student on summer vacation, filling the position of a customs officer was also a little daunting. ‘Where are you going from here’? ‘Seattle’. ‘Then why are you in Vancouver’? ‘Because that’s the route the airline chooses’. ‘Who are you going to visit in Seattle’? ‘My sister and her family’. ‘Are you going anywhere else’?. ‘Yes’ I replied, becoming a little curious regarding how far this was going. She continued, ‘where are you going after that’? ‘Back to Canada’. ‘Where about in Canada’? I was confident my answer would not only bewilder her, but bring an end to the relentless questions. ‘I’m going to place called Keremeos’, choosing to leave out detail. Becoming quite excited she asked, ‘who do you know in Keremeos’? ‘Bill and Shirley’, I hadn’t quite finished when she butted in shrieking, ‘bleep-bleep’ ‘that’s Mum and Dad’.
A couple of weeks later. ‘Where on earth have you been’? ‘We’ve been expecting you for two weeks’. Clearly our intended surprise visit was well and truly blown. A day or two later, another surprise. We were reminiscing with Bill and Shirley when who should crunch up the drive, but the over curious customs officer. Good times and lots of laughter added to the evenings delights, leaving me thinking, ‘it’s going to be a very smart cookie that gets past her’ as she establishes her career.