NYC Part 1 of 4: Insulin pump violated at Sea-Tac

Just five days and New York City is back in this Princess’s good books! It may have been a whirlwind trip, but my goodness, it was an amazing trip that felt way longer than just five days. Because Mario and I had been to the city previously, and had already done a lot of the touristy type stuff, this time around, we really just wanted to take in the city and experience it (somewhat) as a New Yorker would … it helped that we both have friends living there to show us how 😀

We ate a lot of good food, spent time in Manhattan, SoHo and Brooklyn Heights, ran through Central Park with the masses, drank beer at true, New York, hole-in-the-wall bars, discovered my Liz Lemon at Rockefeller Centre, embraced anti-Bush rebellion on Broadway, took in the lights at Times Square, navigated the subway system (all by myself!!!) and last, but certainly not least, made my belly oh so happy with a slice of Junior’s cheesecake … yum! My new goal in life: recreate that recipe!

Administering a BG correction in Times Square

This was the first time for me traveling with the insulin pump, and it was quite the eye opener. It all started at Sea-Tac Airport. Normally we would have flown out of YVR in Vancouver, but the straight cost was about $500 cheaper to fly out of Seattle, which is only a two-and-a-half-hour drive from where we live (we didn’t take into account, however, the additional costs of things like gas, accommodations, food, luggage fees and fatigue).

When I went through airport security, I left my insulin pump attached to the waste band of my jeans, and of course it set off the alarms. I didn’t really think much of it, though, I mean it’s obvious it’s for a medical condition – it is attached to me after all. I just thought I’d have to show them it, tell them what it was, and if need be show them the doctor’s note I have in my wallet (which I’ve had in there for about five years now and have never had to use). But no, it was a heck of a lot more complicated than that. First a guard directed me to “caress” my pump (what the heck is that?) and then she swiped a white wand thing all over my hands and my pump and checked the wand’s swab in a computer for some sort of terrorist-like chemical I’m guessing. Then she patted me down, and hard, over my infusion site, which hurt like hell. Once she was done with me, I was moved on to another guard who proceeded to take everything out of my carry-on bag and purse, and wiped the wand over my camera and blood glucose metre and shoes, and cell phone, and opened up the canister holding my tea, and the jar holding my vitamins, and the bottle holding my test strips and the box holding my insulin  – and meanwhile I’m sitting there looking all guilty like, and thinking, geez, it sure was a helluva lot easier traveling with traditional needles, something you’d figure would set off alarm bells, but never did.

Old school but simple - traveling wise that is!

So, after all that frustration, I decided on the way home, to test the system. After we checked our bags at JFK, and were just about to go through the security check, I removed the pump and stuck it in my purse. And I got through without a hitch. I didn’t get stopped, I didn’t get patted down, my bags didn’t get checked. I was in and out in a matter of maybe 30 seconds, not the 15 minutes it took at Sea-Tac. Note to self, on future trips, take the pump off to save the hassle.

Another traveling lesson learned

What kind of traveling tips do you live by?

Because we didn’t get home until 3 a.m. last night, I’m still just resting up my eyes and feet (ohhh how they need rest, and some major TLC) and saving my energy for a possible bike ride tomorrow and a run on Monday. Going to watch The Messenger tonight; love Woody Harrelson!

I hope you all had a great week. Stay tuned for more of my New York recap tomorrow.

3 thoughts on “NYC Part 1 of 4: Insulin pump violated at Sea-Tac”

  1. Oi, sorry about all the pump drama! Getting the pat-down does NOT sound comfy.

    Slip on shoes! I always wear my cowboy boots so I don’t have to keep tying and retying my laces at security.

  2. Katie could of just been your time for a pat down, I received one in the abbotsford airport when we left for Calgary … she told me that it was random and it was my lucky day…. rest well

  3. Pingback: Unlocking the T-1 shackles |

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