Brute Force

After a rather pleasant, uneventful trip back from Seattle, I arrived into Basel airport yesterday end of the afternoon – and was not very surprised to find that none of the bags had made it through the transfer in Heathrow, which admittedly with a scant 50 minutes from landing to take off was a bit on the tight side. The plane left Seattle two hours late, so that made it all a bit breathless. Still, I always think to myself in such instances, the main thing is that I am home – and in a sense it is a double win, as consequently as the bags are delivered home, I don’t need to lug the heavy bags! Me likee.

(Actually, talking about heavy baggage tags: one time I was checking in bags with some airline, they insisted on tagging them with heavy labels – at 16kg! I asked the check-in person whether maybe their luggage handler were Oompa Loompas? Or hobbits? She was non-plussed. Oh well, I suppose it is all relative)

However, I was a bit dismayed when the bags did turn up early afternoon today: They were in a pretty sorry state. They had obviously been severely crushed. Everything in the bags was flattened. Maybe British Airways uses elephants to move the baggage around? Also, the handle on my North Face wheely duffle was cleanly ripped off the frame, the luggage tags had been torn off, the 10mm Sirius line I use to close up the roll-top Exped duffle had been removed. Grrrrr… Oh, and in each bag, one of the charming letters from US customs informing me that they had gone through my stuff. No shit, Sherlock? I would never have guessed.

When I phoned BA to ask whether they considered all this normal, the lady suggested it would probably be best if I took it up with my insurance. You what?

Sometimes I wonder whether it is robust bags which simply push luggage handlers over the edge – a blatant provocation, challenging their manliness or something like that. In my mind’s eye I can picture them picking up my duffles, chucking them in front of the wheels of a taxiing 747!

Obviously luggage handlers subscribe to Tony Tresselt‘s maxim (and I am paraphrasing here): If you cannot resolve a problem with brute force, it is simply that you are not applying enough of it!

Following the logic that robust bags are red flags to luggage handlers, it would presumable make sense in future to travel exclusively with pink Hallo Kitty or fluffy My Little Pony suitcases. That might do the trick! Just have to check now whether they do 80 litre supersized versions…