The last couple of months I have been engaged in doing some paperwork that led me to the consulates of three countries. I would love to inform that in this era of enhanced terrorism alerts, the security would be airtight since they insist you must come to their grounds totally disarmed but you would be disappointed. I understand that Miami is not a hotbed for terrorism, but maybe because of that it makes for a more inviting target, specially when one of the consulates I visited was a past target of terrorism by at least two different groups.
The first consulate was an accidental test. As told, no weapons of any kind were allowed and I thought I followed the instructions but I did not and not on purpose. A local Rent-A-Cop was at the door and ordered me to drop all metal objects on a basket before going through the metal detector. Keys, change, pen cell phone (turned off of course), Surefire 6P and my American Snipers steel bracelet were put aside and I walked through the magnetometer which, of course, beeped. I started doing the patting-myself dance and I realized that I had my Boker Subcom Wharcom on my back pocket. I kept doing the pocket patting and the Rent-A-Cop pointed at my midsection and asked me if my belt buckle was metal (I wear a The Wilderness Instructor belt every day) I said yes and he waved me in! No second go around through the detector, no waving me with the magic wand,just come right in.
The second was the first official test. Again no firearms but this time I had two knives with me: An old Swiss army knife and a folding with a 4 inch blade. I also had my Leatherman which has a blade of its own so you could say I had 3 blades. This Rent-A-Cop was pretty much the same even if it was from a different company. I had left my American Snipers steel bracelet on my wrist so it would be detected and create a misdirection: It worked beautifully. I showed it to the Rent-A-Cop, he nodded and let me in without any further checks.
The last consulate was even easier. The Rent-A-Cop was so enthralled that I would walk around in the daylight with a flashlight in my pocket that he ignored beeps and alarms emanating from my person while he fondled it and listened to my explanation that buildings tend to be very dark places if the power goes out during the day. For this trip and knowing that this country had been the victim of terrorism for over half my lifetime, I chosen to carry only the Boker again in my back pocket. I thought this place would be a much tougher nut to crack, but it happened to be way to darn easy. As a matter of fact I was carrying one of those leather legal size pad holder that are very cushy and I could have smuggled a small semi auto with several magazines inside because Rent-A-Cop didn’t even check it.
All three consulate’s floor plans are designed for one-entrance-one-exit-both-side-by-side which allows for no escape whatsoever unless you are inside the inner sanctum. But if you are in the public common area and a gunman appears at the door, you are plum empty of fecal material because you will be sprayed in a perfect killing zone. Barrel Meet Fish. Internationals Gun Free Zones are no fun either.
The worst part? I have to go back to the damned places.