Author – Jimbo
I have recently been on a lads trip to Vegas. We had a brilliant time partying every night. Our last night was no exception even though we had a morning flight the next day. In fact we never really got to bed. We had two flights home, Vegas to Manchester, England via Chicago. At the airport we had to take off our shoes and queue to go through security. I put my trainers in the same tray as Marks shoes but the security guy said one pair only per tray. It was busy and I was unable to add an extra tray into the solid line of trays waiting to be scanned, so the guy advised me to use another security line. Instead of picking up my trainers I deliberately removed Mark’s Adidas trainers leaving mine in his tray and walked in my socks to another queue on the other side of the hall. I placed Mark’s trainers in another tray and went through the metal detector. I was still quicker than the lads in the other queue. I quickly walked back to the original security screener where I collected my shoes and bag. The lads eventually got through their metal detector and started to grab their shoes and carry on bags. As we put on our shoes Gaz asked Mark what he was waiting for. “My trainers” he said. He asked a security guy if his shoes had been taken away for more checks. The guy said no and asked Mark if he was sure he had placed them in a tray. Mark was getting annoyed stood in his socks. The security guard used his radio to give a description of Mark’s trainers. After 15 minutes another guard arrived carrying the missing trainers. “They where in a tray at the far end of the hall” she said with a stern voice. I burst out laughing as Mark put on his shoes. Did you do that? he said. All the lads laughed as I told them what I’d done much to Mark’s annoyance.
The flight to Chicago was full, four hours cramped in an economy seat, I was hoping the next flight wasn’t as full as I needed some sleep. After an uneventful but long wait at Chicago we boarded the Manchester flight. We were near the front of economy, Mark sat next to me in the centre row. Once in the air I kicked off my Nikes and tried to get comfortable, eventually the seat belt sign went off and I legged it to the toilet, not a good idea in socks but I was desperate. Walking back I noticed a full row of empty seats, blankets where neatly placed on the seats so I knew they weren’t occupied. I decided there an then that they where mine. I lifted all the arm rests and laid down across all the seats and went to sleep. I’d slept for the full eight hour flight, only being woken by the flight attendant who said I needed to sit upright and fasten my seat belt. I was about to get up and return to my original seat but she wouldn’t allow it as the seat belt sign was on. I sat there shoeless awaiting the plane to land. After landing and taxiing to the terminal, everyone stood up before the seat belt sign went off blocking my path back to my original seat. I waited again still shoeless until everyone started disembarking. Eventually I reached my original seat, grabbed my bag from the overhead locker and searched under the seat for my trainers but they where gone. I waited until everyone got off I got down on the floor to check under all the seats. The flight attendant asked what I was doing, I told her my shoes are missing. She really didn’t know what to do or say but advised me to report it to ground staff. I walked off the plane shoeless, fortunately I used an air bridge and did not have to use steps and walk across the tarmac in socked feet. Being the last off the plane nobody could see my shoeless feet. Unfortunately, as anyone using T2 at Manchester knows just how long the walk is to immigration. I tried phoning the lads, I assumed they must already be at immigration as they weren’t answering their phones. As I continued walking in my white socks the concourse started filling with passengers from other flights. I was becoming concious of other passengers staring at my shoeless feet. Upon arrival at the immigration hall the queues were out the door. Forty five minutes of waiting in line I got through the automatic passport control kiosk meaning no awkward questions about my now dirty white socked feet. I eventually caught up with the lads in the baggage reclaim hall. “Who took my shoes?” I asked as they laughed at my the situation. Then laughed again as they stared at the luggage carousel where my suitcase was going around with my trainers placed on top. “We are even now” said Mark. Gaz said that I was lucky as he wanted to take my bag aswell, leaving me stranded ‘airside’ without my passport and shoes. I collected my suitcase and Nikes, put them on and we all headed for the exit.