There will be many entries coming your way about this magical trip I just took to Brisbane, Australia with Fleshlight. I thought I would just start with the basics, the beginning; build a ground up series to bring you into my mindset and properly share my journey with you.
So first lets start with the travel day for the trip. As I posted before I left, I am still like a kid when it comes to travel. I get totally lost in the thought of the unknown & overly excited about the possibility of seeing, what for me, up until this point was the unseen. When you add that to the fact that I know I am going to meet people I have chatted with on social media in person for the first time. I know that anywhere I go, I will be meeting new people, taking pictures and making moments with them. Even just the 2-5 minute conversation is special to me. I ask some questions about them to help me remember them and I feel totally flattered by the warmth I am surrounded with no matter where I go.
When I landed at the airport I prepared my self for the standard shake down. One of the downsides for me traveling. A fact that believe it or not after the intensity of 2015 (the year I was detained 115 hours at airports) I took a little break from traveling all together, especially internationally. Let me explain. No matter how much documentation I have with my passport, my red dress number, a letter from the US Border Patrol, nothing matters. As soon as I arrive at customs there is always one agent who spots me, approaches me and starts to ask me questions. Then they take my boarding card or whatever documentation I have and they write on it. Once they write something, that’s when I know I am done, literally at mercy with a stranger alone who is going to go through everything I brought while asking me an endless list of personal questions. Now it was time for me to take a deep breath and accept my fate.
Once I got through the line at customs when I arrived in Brisbane, I again, met with the same officer that wrote the little note on my card. Like I expected, he pulled me from the line and told me I would need to bring my things and come with him. While I was walking behind him I said to myself “You have been through this before, you have rights, be firm, stand your ground and patiently allow the process to happen”.
When we got to the private search area alone (never a great feeling for a woman) I proceeded to take a little different approach this time. I spoke. I spoke firmly and then I backed off. I said “listen this happens to me every time I travel. I have no criminal record, I have nothing in my bags that will interest you, but I will let you do your things and touch each and every item I brought with me. I have one question for you before you start. “He said, “What is it?” I said “why did you pull me aside.” He said, “You have on a baggy jacket and it looks like you could be smuggling drugs” I said “Seriously, a baggy jacket? Smuggling drugs??” The semantics I thought as i shook my head. I then took a steps back and waited it out with as little conversation as possible. I was asked a couple hundred questions in which I gave a couple hundred one word answers. I was expressionless with every answer. I feel at this point, the dog and pony show is unnecessary & I shouldn’t have to fulfill all the needs of his personal curiosity.
After the first 45 minutes of him going through everything I packed & asking questions about it, he went through the lining of my suit cases we were not at the point where I knew what was next. My phone, my technology, everything that remains. The phone leads to more questions than you can imagine, I don’t carry hard core or nude photos on my phone, so I know this so disappointing to the officers. Photo by photo, I get asked when the photo’s were taken, where, why was I there and so on. You can imagine how frustrating this is, especially after a 14-hour flight. At this point I started to talk about the Patriot Act, my rights that I know and his response was the same as every other man who has detained me like this. They all say, “none of that matters here, you in my country now!”
This is when I remind myself i am just being tested and to avoid showing frustration I remind myself I am doing nothing wrong. I have no criminal record, nothing illegal in my bags. I calmly remind myself he is only going to keep me here till he is finished going through all of my things. I am going to get through this and I am going to have an awesome trip. I stood there realizing though he had my passport, he never asked to see my travel visa. My driver’s license, travel documents, where I was staying. The normal border patrol criteria for questions. Nope, this guy was just curious and the trade off was my time, my privacy was all at the cost of satisfying his curiosity.
As frustrating as this all is, I have become committed to not allowing these events to derail my thought process. It’s a powerful feeling to just let it all be and not let it take my spirit. These little challenges in life are part of what reminds me who I am. What I am made of, what I can endure and more important what I can just breeze through without allowing it have any effect on me. I always just think about The Secret.
As the hour went by I couldn’t help but to feel bad for Jason from Fleshight who I knew was at the airport waiting to pick me up. I asked if I could use my phone, but that only opened a can of worms. “Are you in a hurry? Do you have somewhere to be? Whom are you meeting with?” Seriously, I am just giving my one word answers, I am totally expressionless and more than anything, I couldn’t wait to get a cup of coffee.
Once nothing was left, there was no reason for me to stay he told me I was free to go. Off I went and as I was leaving, I looked back and said “Have a nice day Man!” when in my mind I was thinking about all the actually smugglers & criminals they may have been over looked during the process of endlessly searching me.
I pushed my cart with my bags out to the waiting area at the airport. I was so happy to see Jason. Jason and I met in August of 2014 at the Gold Coast Sexpo. So I knew what he looked like & felt comfortable knowing he was going to be taking care of me for the trip. Most of my life was spent going to a new place, being picked up by a total stranger and just hoping for the best lol. This is why I like to work with the same people as much as possible.
When I saw Jason I gave him a hug and said, “I made it, shakedown and all!” I let him know it would just take hour and me or so to get my wits back a bit & totally erase the feelings of annoyance I was left with after the search. We walked out to the car & as I always do, I walked over to the passenger door. That is actually the driver’s side in the AU. They sit on the other side of the car and drive on the other side of the street. It is not easy to adjust to. So confusing and everything feels so different in a car when it is the total opposite of what you know.
It was a cool, crisp morning. The air was so fresh & the scenery was a lush green. It was about 8 am Brisbane time. It was a beautiful drive through Brisbane. I spent the drive looking at everything out the window, asking Jason questions while learning more about the area. I noticed a lot of the same foliage we have in southern California and I was calling out flowers and plants to Jason as he laughed. It was about a 45-minute drive and it was just enough to shake my airport experience & be back in the positive, inspired, curious mindset that I thrive on.
When we arrived at the Fleshlight warehouse, I set up my computer in Jason’s office& started to reconnect with the world. He called a coffee service that comes to the office and makes you coffee right there. Yes, a traveling barista. It was so cool. I added some pictures to my snap chat, but I forgot to save my story. So many apps with so many quirky things to get used to. BUT it was awesome! It was now about 10am and it was warming up outside by the time the coffee guy arrived. We stood outside to enjoy the fresh air and coffee and I got time to get to know the staff.
Me & my coffee in my work vest taking a pre work coffee break! Keep in mind I am still recovering from a 14 hour flight. That is the best I could even try to look lol!
Now it was time to hit the convention center and get to work. While we waited for hotel check in, I figured why not help out. Make use of my time, get to know some people at Sexpo in advance & just get my sea legs in this totally different time zone. 17 hours ahead from home. I also wanted to stay away that entire day till about 8pm so that I could sleep a full night and avoid jet lag all together. Which I did.
Here is a photo of me with my work vest on getting into the work of it all with Jason as we set up the Fleshlight Booth. Don’t let me take too much credit, Jason did all the work, I just helped here and there lol.
When I finally got to my hotel room, a beautiful suite over looking the city with the most awesome balcony, I walked outside right away. What did I see, the ferris wheel right outside of my room. It was a magical moment. One I knew I would want to share.
After soaking in the sights & getting my fill of fresh air, I decided to start to get settled, I was just thrilled to discover this tub. I ended that day & every day of my trip enjoying that tub!
It all ended beautifully! Between the ferris wheel & the tub, magical can only describe it!