The Air New Zealand ticket agent secured neon green “heavy” tags to half of our eight checked bags. Kurt, Kasey, Eddie and I also had two carry-ons each. We had maxed out the luggage allotment. Kurt also carried a commando poster that came straight from the Bondi Beach Pavillion in Sydney.
With no protective tube — just a rubber band — the poster was the final souvenir I purchased in Australia. Somehow I had convinced Kurt that we must have it and that he could easily carry it on the four flights that would get us from Sydney to Denver in the US.
“Because you guys bought your return tickets in 2009,” the ticket agent explained to us, “you are still eligible for the two free checked bags per person.” He held one end of a long trail of baggage claim tickets that continued to print. “The policy was just changed in July, allowing passengers only one free checked bag,” he added with a look like “Damn, you REALLY lucked out.” Indeed we were very lucky since we weren’t charged a cent for baggage.
He heaved the bags onto the conveyor belt. I really wanted him to ask me something like, “Wow, what’ve you got in here? Rocks?”