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The Airport Zone

The Airport Zone

It is a dimension as vast as three football fields and as timeless as a layover. It is the middle ground between departing and arriving, between security and immigration, and it lies between the pit of man’s tolerance and the summit of his desire to leave. This is the dimension of strange behavior. It is an area which we call The Aiport Zone.

It starts the moment I walk in. I see that woman with the gorgeous Ghurka military stripe leather rolling trunk and Duffel Bag take a look at my old faithful Heys Hard Case and think, “Geez, I need some new bags but they will only be destroyed. Can’t wait until I am flying private.”

Fat bag? Better have a fat wallet, gold status, or be willing to part with some of that stuff. I can’t count the number of times I have had to open and move things from one bag to another to balance out the weight rules. Only a few times did the tampons fall out.

So you know you are about to get on the plane which could mean some culinary disaster, so you opt to wolf down a burger and fries. The rock starts to form in your stomach right as they call your zone to board and you wonder when this behavior will end.


A giant bag of pistachios or that extra bottle of South African rosé you just can’t pass up a browse through the duty-free. In some airports, you literally can’t get past security to the gates without going through the store so that is the excuse I am using for the perfume bottle collection on my counter.

Yes, I do believe being in the airport is a legitimate reason for drinking at 9:30 am. You run into a friend in the lounge and of course, you’re going to share a few tales over a cocktail or two. I mean what’s the purpose of lounge access if not to tie one on while you wait.

After eating junk food, shopping, and day drinking the only logical next step is to pass-out, in public. While in the universe that is not the airport zone, this behavior is reserved for private spaces, sleeping in front of strangers sprawled across your carry-on is just a part of modern travel.



Refreshed from my nap and just in time for the boarding call, I ensconce myself in the oversized sunglasses and noise canceling headphones. Sure I may not really be listening to anything, but they don’t know that. It’s a great conversation stopper.


What are you going to do? You are secured in a building with what could be upwards of 5000 people while you prepare to be locked in a metal tube with 300 of them for 10 hours. Airport behavior ain’t pretty but again, what are you going to do? I’m owning it. How do you act in The Airport Zone?

About The Author

During my educational and professional career, I have lived on five continents; honed my professional communications skills in English, French, Spanish, and Portuguese; and learned the importance of cultural considerations in the development of communications materials.

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