Letters for Oct. 29, 2016

• Better off staying home

Better off staying home

On July 21, after checking one bag, I went through TSA handlers on my first stop on my way to Oakland. I set off their alarm and four handlers descended on my large purse and carry-on. They turned their backs to me as I stood stunned and helpless. One handler took a zippered pouch and opened my 11 supplement and RX vials where I had two-week portions of brain, bone, bladder, energy, energy and vision supplements, arnica for pain and three medications. I humorously suggested they hire a psychic and they wouldn’t be stressing an 86-year-old woman. Everything (almost) was thrown back into a disorganized mess.

When I was settled in my friend’s California home and needed my medication, I couldn’t find the pouch. I expected it to show up and focused on my college friend from 65 years ago.

I tend to misplace things and not see it in the midst of distracting items, so I dismissed it and trusted I would get along without my usual routine. I wondered about some replacement for my thyroid medications as my thyroid gland was removed due to cancer 25 years ago.

We drove five hours to my family reunion site where I spent five days with three brothers and their families. Just keeping up, swimming and visiting kept my mind off the missing medication.

When I was beginning to feel the absence of my thyroid medication and was back with my college friend, I inquired with a local pharmacist and was told I needed to contact my Kauai doctor. This was a Friday and the doctor was busy. My friend took over calling several times to emphasize the urgency. Just at closing time, the medication order came through to the California pharmacy. It took a whole day of our time together.

Back in Kauai airport, I went to see a supervisor of TSA and was referred to lost and found. Continued exhausting referrals and phone numbers resulted in being sent four email pages of intricate forms to file a report. It was overwhelming. I knew I couldn’t supply all the information required and I decided to forgive the whole thing and avoid traveling.

Petra Sundheim, Lihue

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