It Might Be Time For A Burner

I blame my parents for my (slightly obsessive) love of travel. They sent me to France on my own when I was 14, to stay with a French family for a month. The journey from NY to Marseille was so fraught with mishaps that I learned how to navigate across borders without any assistance (and only one year of French behind me). The rest of the trip didn't go well, but when I returned to NY I felt like a grown up.

I travel a lot for work and pleasure, and I am not even close to done yet.

The current state of things has me concerned for real, for the first time in my life. Travel bans that seem to change daily, airport interrogations, increased privacy risk, a ban on devices... as much as I hate to admit it, I am starting to think differently about my approach - what I bring, where I go, how I go (thankfully, I haven't gotten to "if" I should go).

It's likely that I won't encounter any real trouble. I was born in NYC to American parents from NY and the midwest, whose families emigrated here from Scandinavia, Ireland, and Germany. But my friends might. And what happens if I travel to the Middle East or certain parts of Asia? Because those places are still on my list, despite the troubles in the world.

Today, I read this piece in the NY Times about safeguarding your information during security searches. There are good tips in this story and I recommend reading it. Like, get a burner device to travel with - a phone and/or computer that doesn't have all of your most important information on it. A device that you can delete everything from once you no longer need it (which isn't a bad idea, anyway). Following this protocol adds another layer of complication to our lives and that's annoying. But if doing so makes it easier to move around the world, then I'll do it. I wish it was that simple for everyone.