With another "almost" airplane tragedy happening while I was in Portugal I was anticipating security to be more of a pain, but what we got was amazing (if that's the right word for it!)
The rigamarole that we had to go through was incredible!
First, we went through the normal, very intensive, security with long waits, searches, and such -- ok, expected. Super scrutiny of passports with more long waits -- well, ok, again expected.
But then it got rediculous. The Paris airport had sectioned all the US flights on one side of the international terminal and to get there, we had to again wait through long lines to show our passports again (where they literally look you straight in the eye, then look at your passport, then in the eye again to be double sure that you are indeed you). Continuing on through the long line, we had to wait for one of 4 security personnel to completely search everyone's bags, purses, backpacks, coats, etc before we were directed to the male/female specified security personnel where they pat searched us and scanned us with the wand detector (even my 9 year old son got this treatment! Wow!! Do suicide bombers really take their kids with them to be blown up too?)
So, after finally getting through that (and thankfully our flight had been delayed about 45 minutes, otherwise we would have missed it!) we were herded onto the ramp to what we thought was the plane. But, no... we were herded down a stairwell & onto a shuttle, we shuttled about 100 yards over to the next terminal (that was outside of the cordoned off US security side, I guess), where we filed off the shuttle, climbed up a stairwell and --finally-- onto the plain!
Honestly, I was in Portugal during 9/11 and returned to the US about a week after (NY was still in turmoil, and quite empty) and I have to say that security was not half of what it was coming back from this trip after the attempted bombing on Christmas Day. Incredible.
It's just a good thing that the stay in Portugal was really nice, otherwise the hassle of the trip there and the trip back might scare me off of dealing with travel for quite a while! As it is, I'll think twice before scheduling my next trip!
And that's a bummer! I love traveling and it's just really a shame that the world has come to a point where you can't feel perfectly secure traveling to different countries and cultures around the world. Hate is isolating and isolation is never a good thing for humanity!