A Size Matter...
An early morning conversation with some Customs Officer
-Officer (O): Ma’am, I have to ask you some security questions. OK?
- Me (A) (tired, sleepy, paused): OK
-O: Whose luggage is this?
-O: How many suitcases did you check?
-O: Just one?
-A: Just One
-O: Where did you pack them?
-A: At home
-O: Which is, where?
-O: Haaaaaaalem, mmm. Who packed for you?
-A: I did.
-O: Did someone help you?
-A: Unfortunately not. (Giggles)
-O: Where do you work?
-O: Where in Hoofddorp?
-A: Centrum (smile)
-O: Seriously. Which company?
-O: What do you do there?
-A: (wanting to say: el ridículo) I’m a Process Engineer.
-O: Where did you study that Ma’am?
-A: Caracas – Venezuela
-O: Where in Caracas?
-A: (here we go again) Universidad Simón Bolívar. Valle de Sartenejas. Municipio Baruta. Estado Miranda. Venezuela.
-O: Where else, right?
-A: (???) Do you know it?
-O: My wife is Venezuelan.
-A: From Universidad Simón Bolívar?
-O: From San Juan de los Morros.
-A: (¿?) Hmm. (Smile)
-O: Where you goin’?...hmm. Miami, I see.
-A: First New York, then Miami.
-O: Staying with friends? Business or pleasure?
-A: JUST pleasure. Yes; I’m staying with friends in NYC and with family in Me-ah-me
-O: Any electronic devices?
-A: Yes, my mobile.
-O: Nothing else?
-A: No. No laptop. No nothing.
-O: So… You’ll meet your family in Miami…
-O: …and you’ll take pictures, right?
-A: (??) um-hmm
-O: No camera?
-A: I got my mobile. No camera. My camera is broken. I’ll buy a new one.
-O: right. The crisis.
-O: Wait a moment, please.
He goes and talks to the other guy/officer and shows my passport and residence permit card. Both smile.
Then, he returns, gives me the card back and:
-O: Nice picture.
-A: Thank you. I think so too.
-O: Here you go. (Passport and boarding pass)
-A: Thank you.
-O: How did you find this job here, Miss?
-A: Long story short…Toevallig (Just casually, in Dutch).
-O: Oh, je spreekt Nederlands (you speak Dutch). How come?
-A: I lived in Belgium before. Now I live here.
-O: I see…
By the time I was awake enough to realize I was already set free, this guy starts speaking in a very clear Venezuelan Spanish to me:
-O: Are you a model in your free time?
-A: (free time? Does that exist anyway?) No. (I smiled)
-O: Awh. What a pity, what a waste!
-A: HA-HA-HAaave you seen my height?
-O: It’s not size what matters. It’s the quality what counts.
-A: (smiling). Who am I to contradict a customs officer?
-O: You’re wise. Have a great flight and come back soon.