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Voicing Silence 7

Friday, April 17, 2009

A quick tale 226

The alternative is unthinkable

This is not the sort of dilemma you have in mind when you are filling in a job application. My application pack asked me questions about where I studied and what marks I got in my graduation. There was nothing about how I would handle a situation like this. But then of course, you cannot always prepare for every eventuality. Each day I come to work, I come in the secure knowledge that so many hundreds of lives depend on me. That if I mess up even the slightest, not carry out my checks thoroughly, not probe that little bit extra, there could be trouble ahead. But you don't always think about all this when you are at your job. Like when I'm on duty, checking passengers before they board, running the metal detector across their body, dabbing my hands all over their person (strictly for reasons of security) and poking suspicious bulges, just to be sure. I rarely make eye contact with the passengers as I go about my work. I just ask them to head this way, guiding them to a curtained area where I carry out my checks. I try to get it over and done with as quickly and as efficiently as possible. We both know why we are there and I try not to prolong the awkwardness. But at the same time I don't rush things and leave room for error.

But this morning, I was caught offguard when I saw my father-in-law standing in the queue for the security check. Why didn't she tell me about it? What do I do now? Quick! WHAT DO I DO? And before I knew it, he had moved up the queue and was standing right in front of me . Oh hello, how are you? Yes, the flight has been delayed. It should be leaving shortly. Yes, you are looking well too. No, no, I don't want to check you. Don't worry I won't be running my hands down your legs and poking it up your crotch. You may rest assured. I trust you packed your suitcase yourself. Great! Have a safe journey!

2 comments:

L'Etranger said...

I thought they required you to check everyone irrespective of who they are! Weren't you supposed to ask a colleague to check if you felt awkward instead of letting him go unchecked? Just wondering what the guidelines are for such situations!

Saumya said...

Nice one....I was beginning to miss those quick tales!