Clearly, Good Hair Is a Menace To Society

Toward the end of our trip, we took a little puddle jumper airplane way out into the African savannah.

And never fear, soon I shall regale with you stories about what it was like for a girl with flight anxiety to accomplish this feat.

But first, I thought I’d tell you about the airport adventure that led up to it.  Even though it was a small plane, we still had to go through full security at Entebbe airport.  We loaded our bags onto the scanning machine (and I tried to graciously look away when I noticed that the windows behind the scanning machine were taped up with cardboard.). 

I walked through the metal detector, and a female security guard patted me down.  That was just delightful.

Suddenly the conveyor belt stopped; a surly looking guard took my carry-on bag into his hands.  He spoke over his shoulder, in a language I didn’t understand, to another security guard and she nodded.  They unzipped my bag.

He suspiciously pulled out my hair dryer.  And I suppose, in fairness, if you tilt your head and squint, my hair dryer could sort of look like a gun (albeit a rounded, red gun, with a volumizing setting).

The guarded pointed to the dryer and pointed to his head.  "For hair?" he asked.

I nodded.

Then he reached into my bag and pulled out my hairspray bottle.  "For hair?" he asked.

I nodded again.

"Sir," I wanted to say but most definitely did not, "if we have to investigate every piece of paraphernalia it takes for my hair to look good, then we’re going to be here a while."

Instead, I just smiled and tried to look un-threatening.

The investigation ended, and he waved me through.  And it was a good thing, because you can imagine that hairspray and a hair dryer are important pieces of survival equipment when you’re heading out into the African savannah.

The rest of the story to come soon… 

Posted in: Fun

39 thoughts on “Clearly, Good Hair Is a Menace To Society

  1. Fiddledeedee (It Coulda Been Worse) says:

    I would have been in big big trouble. Because I know for a fact that you can actually kill someone with my Chi straightener. I’ve nearly killed myself with 3rd degree burns to my head. To say nothing of my fear of spontaneous hair combustion with the right flammable hair gel.

  2. amyh says:

    Pre-9/11 regs I had two bottles of Suave Salon-style shampoo and conditioner in my bag, and as they were black plastic bottles, this made security suspicious. All for my hair. Glad to see it’s not just me.

  3. Sarah @ Ordinary Days says:

    Remind me of my freshman year of high school trip to Germany. It was a school sponsored trip, with loads of cool older kids. Imagine how I felt when the security people took out my bag of maxi pads to exammine it! Good times…good times…

  4. Penny Raine says:

    he he I remember the last time we flew from CA to TN, we had bout tickets at the last minute which make you suceptible to extra security. As we were going through all of the nonsense an armed guard walked up and said, “you have been chosen for additional screening, please follow me” but he said it with a smile like we had just won the lotto! If you think have your self patted down is bad, try to stand by calmly while they do it to your children. This momma bear suceeded in staying calm though and you didn’t have to read about me in USAtoday. It was truly a miracle.
    blessings, Penny Raine
    http://www.pennyraine.com/blog

  5. Kim says:

    When we left Uganda in 2002, even luggage being loaded into the cargo area was screened. The guy running the machine looked very confused when he saw the four pongas (large machete type knives) in our daughter’s suitcase.
    “You are going camping?” he asked.
    “No,” she said.
    “You are going to farm?” he asked.
    “No, they are for my friends.”
    He just looked puzzled until one of the other screeners said something in Luganda and then the man smiled really big and said, “Oh, you are giving as gifts!”
    “Yes!” she said.
    And he waved us through.
    Don’t think we’d even consider trying to bring pongas home today!

  6. Robin says:

    Wouldn’t you have thought he’d have seen a gazillion of these before? Maybe not red, but close enough.
    I think he knew you had a blog and he wanted a shout out! That would explain it!! 🙂

  7. Melanie says:

    My first and only trip abroad was to Germany. We were in the airport where there were guards with guns stapped over their shoulder-this was before 9-11, so I was not expecting it.
    He pulled out my curling iron and inspected it. I was a little nervous, but then I felt safer knowing they were so strict in screening all the passengers.

  8. angela says:

    Security at airports is a necessity, but it can bring some interesting stories! As a flight attendant I had to carry my big ol electric breast pump with me while I was a nursing Momma…I can’t tell you how many times I got pulled aside for that! And then explaining what it was/worked to the security people, usually men, was even more of a hoot! It got so funny at times we had bets on what might happen in the next security line!

  9. Sarah @ To Motherhood and Beyond says:

    My adventure in airline security was when my husband and I, along with our 1 year old, (after a 9 hour flight from Poland) began when we were “randomly” selected for special screening. They padded me down while I held my son in one arm and then…switch…padded me down again. Then I had to put him on a chair spread his arms out and let them pat him down too…including his diaper. There might’ve been a bomb in there, just not the kind they were looking for. 😉 hee hee! This was all after we watched an Orthodox Jewish family wth 8 children go through the same process. Ah! Gotta love flying!

  10. Kelly @ Love Well says:

    HA! That could totally be a scene in a movie.
    “For hair?”
    “Yep.”
    “For hair?”
    “Yep. That too.”
    “For hair?”
    “Ummm. Yes. Still for hair.”
    “For hair?”
    “For crying out loud, man. I’m TEXAN! Yes, it’s for hair!”

  11. Mary says:

    Love it! Especially after I read all the comments. I was watching Martha this morning and an Italian Chef from Phoenix was trying to smuggle Olive Oil to NY for the show from a fav of mine, Queen Creek Olive Factory. You can guess, it went in the trash. He had to use NY olive oil.

  12. LeeAnn (AKA Frazzmom) says:

    We were in Tanzania last fall. One of our team members had chewing gum in her carry on. The security screener saw it on the X-ray and opened her bag- not to inspect it, but to ask if she could have some!
    Gotta love African travel stories!

  13. Jen says:

    I hate going through airport security! Especially with a sleeping newborn that I have to take OUT of her infant carseat and WAKE HER UP.
    Security not fun.
    Who hides a bomb under a baby?

  14. Jenni says:

    You are so reminding me of Beth Moore with this post…her comments in her books & bible studies concerning her hair are so funny and similar.

  15. Amanda - VintageDutchGirl says:

    Amen… it takes ALOT to make hair look good! And I agree with fiddledeedee about the Chi, it’s deadly! It has no “60min auto shutoff”. However, I like that because by the time I remember that I still haven’t done my hair, a few hours have gone by!

  16. Linda at 2nd cup says:

    I can so relate to this. At the border of Uzbekistan, they separated the men from the women, and I thought I would die. Literally. then when we got off the plane in Uzbekistan, they had machine guns everywhere, and the airport looked like it had been bombed, but it hadn’t. People in this part of the world do not have a clue what this is like, and it’s so hard to describe, but you did a good job.

  17. Lightening says:

    And did your hair dryer work over there? I know different countries seem to use different systems with electricity.
    I am so blessed to have a hairstyle that takes very little to actually “do”. I HATE spending too much time on my hair.
    You give a very comic account of your experiences. I’m really enjoying walking through this with you (especially given I don’t think I’d have the courage to walk it myself)

  18. William says:

    Yeh, its tough to be traveling in a new place. Good thing he knew at least a little english. speaking of culture shock, you should check out the new oklahoma blog, http://www.stephenAmurphy.com. Its about some kid who just moved to the state, and how it looks from his eyes.

  19. Jo says:

    it’s tough deciding what to bring when flying (anywhere really). my problem is that i CONSTANTLY choose bottles that have the tendency to explode everywhere. and t shirts full of foaming face wash just aren’t that comfortable, no matter how clean they may smell.

  20. Kathy in WA says:

    Too funny! Glad you had the hair thing taken care of. Did they care about your computer gear?
    Keep the stories coming! Have you written about your homecoming? How did your children process your trip and your time away?

  21. noble pig says:

    Please tell us where you plugged that thing in? Did someone use bicycle power to run that 1500 Watt appliance after you washed your locks in a river? Good story!

  22. Busy Mums says:

    The body search by the female security guard reminds me very much of a body search I received one day. I was pulled out for the random body search by a very nice lady security officer. As she gave my breasts a good squeeze she smiled at me and said “very nice” I went bright red and escaped whilst the rest of my party were falling about laughing at my discomfort. It took a moment or two for me to realize that the security officer was referring to the rather striking necklace I was wearing.

  23. Kim says:

    Sounds like an interesting event…your trip sounds amazing. It has been encouraging to read about as we are deciding who and how we are going to China to get our Lydia…we are not big travelers, so this was helpful to read about!

  24. Melain says:

    As a hair stylist, I would certainly suffer if those products were declared a threat to national security. Your blog is a fun read. I got a giggle out of your jet lag video. *tehe*

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