Whew! Am I glad to have successfully run the MSP gauntlet this morning and still made it to my flight! And I feel sorry for any of you who have to run that same gauntlet on a regular basis.
The TSA folks in Minneapolis/St. Paul obviously didn't expect too many people to be flying this weekend before Easter, because they only had one agent checking boarding passes and ID at each of the six security entrances across the immense terminal, with roughly 100 travelers meekly (and slowly) advancing through each set of roped-off corralls. I thought I was in the clear when they opened a third X-ray lane where I was waiting.
I hadn't counted on being called out for my "voluminous skirt" (not to mention the veil). There was an embarrassingly accurate "pat down" in which the handkerchief and pen in my pocket were seen as potentially suspect. I emptied both pockets into a tray (hanky, pen, rosary, boarding pass and a business card from the Catholic bookstore I visited yesterday); everything scattered across the floor when the agent dropped the tray. I did feel sorry for her, because she was nervous at having to do something as pointless as patting a down a nun as a potential security risk, but I was getting nervous, too: about the computer on the belt (I could stand near it, but I couldn't touch it) and about the ticking clock at the faraway gate, where a little commuter plane was (hopefully) waiting for me.
I assumed I would have to prepare my carry-ons for a gate check; those commuter planes usually provide space roughly the size of a Kleenex box for your carry-ons. In the one shining moment of today's air travel experience, I was assigned to a commuter plane that had magically ample baggage space over both rows of seats and amazingly adequate under-seat space, too! Plus, they gave out cookies with our choice of beverage. Best of all, the plane landed in Chicago!
It's good to be home.