We’d had a great time in Lapland. Our search for Santa was over, we had found him in his little cabin in the forest and now was the time for our return to the UK.
Rovaniemi airport is quite basic but like all international airports they too have all the security gates to negociate – I guess in case you wish to smuggle an Elf or two back home with you.
I passed through the scanner first…having effectively disrobed there wasn’t anything to go beep. I waited patiently as my son was pushed towards the hoop by my wife – he didn’t quite understand why we all couldn’t go through together but as this was at the insistence of the customs officials we had no alternative but to comply.
Perhaps they knew something we didn’t….
‘Beep’ went the Scanner as my son passed underneath – “Schhtop” said the official (maybe only phonetically and yes I know it sounds Dutch not Finnish), “He needs to go back”.
This and the fact he stuck his arm out effectively preventing my son from proceeding confused my son a bit, who despite his confusion actually complied without a fuss. Maybe the uniform scared him (made me wonder whether wearing a copy would work at home when it was his bedtime which often resulted in a “can I stay up just a little bit longer” plea).
Out came the magic wand shaped like a ping pong bat and the portable scanner was moved over him – this time without a beep.
Back through he was sent…
BEEP ! I’m sure the machine was more insistent the second time.
They like we were perplexed…he wasn’t really old enough for a watch or to have pocketfuls of loose change or keys. Nor was he wearing a belt or necklace or anything remotely metalised.
What he was however doing was eating, like all children in airports they see duty free as a place where it is a legal requirement to buy them drinks and snacks. Toblerone (seemingly always available in airport duty free shops no matter where in the world you are) was this time overlooked for a small ‘kid’ size tin of Salt and Vinegar flavoured Pringles (with emphasis on the tin !). I had not even realised until that moment that the cardboard tube resplendent with it’s plastic top actually had a secret…
… it had a metal base.
It was this that set off the scanner…it was this that yet again had a member of my family stopped at airport security (thankfully for once this time it wasn’t me).
So remember it doesn’t take much to get stopped by security – just eating crisps creates enough peril in itself.