Be afraid. Be very afraid.

Our original flight plan to leave Jordan had us flying out on August 7th so I could get back to Tucson in time for law school orientation. Those plans changed, and now we fly out on the 16th. With the liquid bomb plot that was uncovered in London on the 10th, and the new restrictions it brought, I am almost, almost wishing we had kept our itinerary as it was.

Because the thought of boarding a plane with only my passport, wallet, and an 11-month old absolutely terrifies me. It is possibly more terrifying to me than the thought of taking a chance at being blown up in an airplane at 36,000 feet by someone who managed to sneak hand lotion through the security checkpoint.

Have the people who made these regulations ever spent time around children? Don't they realize that babies have needs that cannot be met by a passport and wallet sealed neatly in a plastic bag?

Every time I step out the door of my apartment with Miriam, even to go on a simple, local errand, I carry a diaper bag with me. Inside of that bag is everything Miriam could possibly need in any situation that could possibly arise. A blanket, some diapers, a burp rag, a little baggie of Cheerios, sunscreen, sunhat, ibuprofen (well, that's for me), water, a small toy, extra nursing pads, baby wipes, hand sanitizer, a spare onesie, etc. You just never know what might happen.

And now they are asking me to embark on a 36-hour, three-leg flight across three continents and an ocean with nothing more than the aforementioned passport and wallet.

I do have some hope that we will be allowed a carry-on bag, since we aren't flying through London or even on British Airways. But we are nonetheless preparing for the possibility that our carry-on privileges might be taken away unexpectedly on any leg of our journey.

And it appears that every airport and every airline are not allowing liquids on board the airplane. Again, I have to wonder at the real-world experience of the people making up these rules. Perhaps they have never experienced first-hand the absolutely desiccating experience of spending 10 hours on an airplane, or washing one's hands even once using the soap provided in an airplane lavatory. I will definitely be crying for hand lotion by the time we arrive in Tucson.

I thought about maybe using chapstick for lotion if I get really desperate, and then a thought struck me - is chapstick considered a liquid?

Like I said, I am so afraid.

The old Abdoun

Open letter to taxi drivers