I was really starting to consider myself a bit of a seasoned traveler… that was, until last week.
So, I get off the plane from Bali and land at the Bangkok airport. I have been to the Bangkok airport like 10 times now. I have the places I go if I want a coffee, a beer, a pedicure, some good smelling lotion… I am pretty comfortable there.
After landing on a flight on Thai airways (pay attention to this fact) I have about 5 hours to kill to wait for my friend from Delhi to meet me and then we are going to fly to Phuket (on Air Asia) on our way to Phi Phi. I walk around the airport for a while, feeling super relaxed after 8 days of yoga and meditation, look at books, leisurely make my way into an Internet cafe, I am relaxed thinking to myself how comfortable I feel traveling, checking the time, “oh, I have enough time to get a manicure”, when all of a sudden it hits me, “holy shit, my luggage!!!!”.
See, yes, I have been to the Bangkok airport a bunch of time, and during my time there not once has it ever included me having to worry about my luggage (it’s always been checked straight through). So, now it has been about 4 hours since my flight landed, I have no idea which baggage claim area it’s in (or was in… IT’S 4 HOURS AFTER THE FLIGHT LANDED), I can’t find the baggage claim tag, and now I have to go through immigration to get it and I have left myself about 45 minutes to do all of this. Breathe. (this breathing thing works wonders!)
I make my way to immigration, quickly fill-out the necessary forms and go stand in line to get through. From where I am standing I have a view into the baggage claim area … and omg, there’s my bag off to the side. Super relieved to see it! Amazing that it’s still there and I picked the right baggage claim area (Thank God!). But I have to get there ASAP because I don’t know what I did with the baggage claim ticket and if for some reason someone comes and asks me for it, I am screwed. So, I am waiting and there are two people in front of me. “Come on, come on!” Ok. my turn. I swear, as soon as I get up to the immigration agent, I see this guy with a cart right next to my bag and he is about to grab it. I am waving at this guy with the cart, “that’s my bag“, while the immigration guy is looking at me and asking me questions, “how long are you going to be in Thailand? …. “what?, um like 5 days I think” as I am waving at this guy, “that’s my bag!“. The immigration agent is like, hello?!, what are you waving at.” Oh yeah, reality check, I am in Thailand at the immigration desk and I need this immigration guy to like me so that he let’s me into the country so I can get my bag and meet my friend to keep traveling; he kind of deserves my undivided attention, which I give him for the next 3 minutes before he let’s me through.
Made it, grabbed the bag with no problem and was back through security in time to meet my friend. Deep breathe again and very thankful.
Little travel trip from me: No matter how much you travel, don’t ever take anything for granted … and don’t forget about your luggage. (especially if you just spend $300 at Lulu Lemon on yoga apparel right before you left to go on vacation). Oh, and see the picture above how my clothes next to each other rather than stacked, I just started doing this and it’s so much easier to find things! (& no I don’t have OCD, I just like to have a very organized bag. lol.)