ShowsBefore You GoBulletin BoardContactAboutSearch
Show and Features |
Culture Watch | Question of the Week | Letters of the Week |
Traveler's Aid | Library | Host's View


Carry-on Baggage

Being an American woman who is married to an Indian has brought me many travel adventures. Here are two of my fondest memories concerning carry-on baggage:

We went to Chennai, India, in 1998 for our Indian wedding. The shopping there was great and I soon went overboard in finding gifts for friends and family.

At one shop I spotted a one-foot tall, 10-pound terra-cotta horse that I was sure my then nine- year-old cousin would love. Not wanting to take a chance with it in my suitcase, I proceeded to hand-carry it half-way around the world, wrapped in some cloth, and either sitting on my lap the whole time or under the seat in front of me. In the airports either my husband or I would trade off if we had to use the restroom, etc, and it had its own seat in the waiting rooms. When we finally made it back to the U.S. I handed over the terra cotta horse and the story of its journey to my delighted cousin. At least she knows she's well-loved!

On a trip to Texas to meet with some Hindu friends (also coming from other states), one of them bought a large bronze image of Ganesha, the remover of obstacles. She decided to carry it on with her to avoid potential damage. Because she was running late for her plan, we rushed through the airport. We were fine until we went to the x-ray machine. The man who was reading the x-ray machine was Indian. He asked my friend to unpack her carry- on bag so he could get a better look at this solid metal object. At this point we were sure she would miss her plane. When she pulled out the Ganesha image, he realized what it was and proceeded touched its feet and then his own eyes in an Indian gesture that means "pardon me." Acting embarrassed, he told her she was free to go on her way and she barely caught her plane! I guess the Remover of Obstacles was working!




{ This Week's Index | Next Letter }

{ Main Letters Page }

American Public Media
American Public Media Home | Search | How to Listen
©2004 American Public Media |
Terms of Use | Privacy Policy