I grumbled that I have to go through security check on a connecting airport. It turned out that my domestic flight had landed in the international section. There was no secure passage connecting it to the next terminal. I crossed the security checkpoint at LA airport, and after wearing my shoes, I was waiting for my bag to come out of the scanner.
“Sir, is this your bag?” a tall African-American TSA personnel looking at me, said, “it turned the light red on the scanner, we need to recheck it.” I was pretty sure the bottles were empty. I was not carrying anything sharp except keys which TSA people have seen before. She opened my bag in front of me, checked and pulled a banana bread out. “We have to test this,” she said.
I purchased that banana bread earlier from a Farmer’s market (“mandi”). I did not get a chance to eat it, so, it was wrapped around in unmarked polythene, there was no receipt either. Could this banana bread be carrying narcotics? How would I prove my innocence? How would I explain this to my mother? The thought sent shivers through my spine. I felt a strong impulse of grabbing the banana bread from her and swallowing it right there. But fear of five TSA men jumping on me and Mercury News/Punjab Kesari publishing that news held me back.
Less than a minute later, she came back and said: “everything fine, you are good to go.” I finished that banana bread right there while she watched with bewilderment.