Saturday, May 24, 2014

Welcome. (I loathe you.)

I am on a quick trip to 'Merica take a (1 of 2) midwifery test and see my big girls and pick up Hope to bring back to Ayiti. I've been here very few hours and have enjoyed two hot water events.  I'm nervous and anxious and happy and also a bit sad to be here while the Maternity Center is facing big hurts. (See Chikungunya posts.)

Pretty much the usual amplified feels tortured soul routine. I don't often stray from it. 

Six minutes in the USA and I managed to annoy an American.  

Why why WHY do those U.S. Customs/Border Patrol people hate everyone so terribly much? 

Their training MUST include something about growing an impassioned disdain for the human race. Here is what happened: I went to that automated passport machine, a newish thing, it flags me to go see a live customs person because I have a hyphenated last name and they tell me that anyone with that, or who is a Jr. or a the third will always get stopped because your airline ticket rarely exactly matches your passport name. If the two last names are there with no hyphen you are flagged as a different person than the passport.  

I stood in line like any good American can (sometimes) do. The counter in front of me cleared, the person left. It was straight ahead, only a distance of about six feet. The overhead speaker announces what station is open.  However, my adept little eyes saw it was open faster than the lady at the speaker was notified and my foot fell across the yellow line right BEFORE the speaker said, "Agent Four is now available".  By the time I took three steps and got to agent four, the whole announcement was out.  

Agent four said, "You have to wait until the speaker says to come."  I don't know what my face did, but it was probably a mixture of confused and witchy.  I said, "Yeah, the speaker said it." He said, "You came before it said it." I said, "Are you serious right now? What's your deal?" He waved his hand at me to go back to the line.  

I muttered under my breath, "America, the land of the free to be rude..." He didn't hear me. He sat there in his elevated booth in his swivel chair all smug in his victory over me. I realize that in actuality, this phenomenon crosses international borders, so probably their training program has been translated into all languages.   Had Troy been with me, he would tell me to simmer and say, "It isn't worth it, Tara."  So, I pretended Troy was with me and stepped back to line. 

The overhead speaker said, "Agent eight is now available".  With absolute gratitude to the speaker voice, I went to line eight where I met a person not as far along in their abhorrence training.