A grueling flight (sixteen hours). Paperwork before the plane lands. A line that winds and twists like a ride at Worlds of Fun. Removing shoes and jacket, opening laptop and carryon, standing tall and lifting arms. Anything in your pockets? Got liquids? Wearing a belt? One guy takes off his shirt, bare skinned in protest to “excessive security.” (Obviously an American.)
I don’t mind any of it, but that’s a different blog.
More: waiting at a carousel and picking up bags. Border control dogs. Guards and uniformed officials, airline employees and airport security. Passport review and handing off bags to be rehandled, re-sorted and (hopefully) re-checked to its US destination.
Walking, waiting, more lines…and then:
Paperwork, please. Why were you in Qatar? What did you do? How long were you there? Are you going back? When?
And finally, finally: STAMP. “Welcome home.”
Humduilallah! My innards swell: my kids. My house. My yard.
pretty trees in my front yard, pic by Kay
So much I love about America: open, smooth six lane highways. Drivers who merge, allow others in, wait on pedestrians. People in a multitude of colors. A green, green garden that grows whether I’m here to water it or not. Running outside in shorts and tank top. A place to park. Dems and Reps and Muslims and Catholics, the haves and the have nots - side by side at the checkout. Walmart. Modern Family. Taco Bell.
Oh yes, I do love America.
Still, Qatar has something America doesn’t:
I like this pic. J
I squeeze my beautiful not-a-baby-anymore-housesitting daughter and make lists: of everything that must be done before I can…