Thursday, May 5, 2011


Three beautiful black Plano boxes, if they pass the initial checkpoint at the Delta counter in Grand Rapids, clunk their way down the conveyor belt painted with Coca-Cola advertisements in the Entebbe airport. These three boxes, with their “Airport Approved” labels still affixed, look an awful lot like something a wholesaler might use to transport goods for sale…goods requiring customs duty. Given that three such boxes and only a carryon that looks like normal luggage made their way across the ocean, the wholesaler idea could raise questions in the minds of customs officials.

Nothing in the three boxes I’m bringing could be considered dutiable, everything is my personal effects. The content is all just a bunch of used stuff from home. Thing is…almost everything for sale in Uganda is second hand so this defense may not work. One of the boxes is overstuffed with toddler and baby clothing, but a friend is having a baby soon…it’s true. Three computers? Well, one is for at home, one is for when I travel, and one is a gift…really.

Try not to tippy toe to see over the top of the third box on the luggage cart, don’t take the corners too fast, and avoid running over any pedestrians. I suppose I could hope that one piece is delayed (not lost, just delayed) so that I can simply exit with two boxes thus drawing less attention to my luggage.