Getting Ugly at Immigration

Dear Carl,

If I find a photocopy or any kind of snippet of my writing anywhere other than on this site I will find you and I will kick you in the head.

Love Fliss xox

I don’t know the date, I don’t know the time, my body aches, I look ill and I’ve seen more of Bob Ditter’s hands than you could imagine. Yup, I’m at camp and coming to the end of staff week. Fun stuff.

The beginning of this American journey begins with a very long and complicated and, maybe one day, funny story. Here we go.

My Dad and I made the long trip to Heathrow airport Friday morning. I felt like I was missing something important but turn out I was just acting as a prophet at that point. Once at Heathrow I said my goodbyes and walked off through security with a my camp traveling buddy. (There’s a giant ant hiding under my keyboard and it’s annoying me).

We went through security no problem; no problem as in my bra didn’t set it off for once. Now, once my stuff comes through the x-ray scanner I always have a panic that the business men behind me are getting grouchy that I’m taking too long to get my things together and dance off into a tax-free vacuum; I rushed, grabbed everything and did my dance to be perfume spritzed against my will. Mistake.

The next part I don’t remember so well (I’m pretty sure Starbucks didn’t drug my coffee), if I remembered it properly then this blog post wouldn’t exist . All I know is that I went to the loo and I find it weird talking about my bladder movements so I’ll leave it at that.

Skip to the plane- Virgin Atlantic. Always fly with Virgin Atlantic. Not only does there chicken kurma look like chicken kurma but they actually have intellectual air hostesses. Which brings me on to my mistake of leaving my visa papers in the Heathrow toilets.

You may laugh but my common sense is still crying….

We were flying over Ireland, I was looking for some form they wanted me to fill in and then, like a punch in the balls that Carl will gets printed, I realised the papers were traveling time zones.

Now, when I’m travelling, I’m usually seated next to the freaky/annoying/largely obese passenger. It must be the name. This time I was lucky enough to be making small talk with another Camp America guy. One who turned out to be an ex-Harlequins player, a ‘founder’ of a charity and part time expert motivation speaker. Now I think about this, it was possible that these were all lies. The lies helped. One of the air hostesses came up to reassure me that as long as I went to a male security guy at immigration and put on the water works I’d be let into the country. That raises a few questions, right?

This is such a long story…

Eventually a message is sent to Heathrow to look for my papers which were hanging out in a toilet cubicle. A few hours of nervous waiting and I was told that they’d been found, and that they were making their way in on a plane 3 hours behind me. Top service. I was also given the message that I’d have to be escorted through immigration. The guy next to me reassured me that this would make an incredible blog post; writing this in a half state of deliriousness does no justice.

Finally we’re in Newark, I’m met off the plane by a Virgin hostesser (I’m assuming this is the name for a male trolly dolly?). He takes me to immigration, not one of my favourite places since the first time I was there when I fainted in the hour long queue. We skip the queue to boos and hisses from the Camp America crowd behind me; unlucky. At the desk I’m told that the papers weren’t needed……………………

Other than the panic that I endured for 7 hours or so this became a win win situation for me. I skipped the queue and ended up chatting with the air hostesser who was from India. He told me how much better Virgin was than any other airline, he told me how fake he had to be to customers and how much he didn’t give a shit. He told me to get a job with Virgin and that asked me on a date to go skydiving with him. Sadly we were to be two other sides of the Pacific but maybe one day we’ll meet again.

So I’m reunited with my friends an hour later and off we go to be greeted with the fakest of fake smiles by American Camp America staff. They didn’t understand what the situation was, nor did they care to try and understand…they just smiled. Ergh. I ended up being told to go back and forth between arrivals and the bus to the hotel; ending up on the bus to the hotel I was given an orientation at 3am UK time which was not needed. I bumped into one of the staff members who told me they’d pick up my papers and leave it for me to collect when I left at 7am from their office in the hotel. Done deal. I went to bed, woke up, went to get my papers and nada. No papers, no knowledge of papers. I was so mad. I still am. 

Whatever. I hopped into a staff members car and journeyed to the other side of New York to catch a plane to Philadelphia to then change t head back up to Detroit. I was in a state of I-don’t-care-anymoreness. About 8 hours later I was reunited with awesome people in a place that felt like a summer home.

And the moral of this story is to always fly with Virgin Atlantic.

The End.

This blog post has been written in stances over the period of 2 weeks. Slight fail. The other day I received my papers in a FedEx package along with the message from the air hostess stating that ‘things could get ugly’. Amen to that.


4 responses to “Getting Ugly at Immigration

  1. hahahah, yessss, found my summer entertainment (but glad you made it safe and sound baba geeee xoxoxox)

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