Olympian's Mother Finds Suitcase Exploded By Brazilian Authorities
Photo courtesy Thinkstock
Did you hear the one about the Olympian’s mother who saw her suitcase blown up by Brazilian officials?
You may have missed the crazy story amid tales such as Ryan Lochte’s purportedly tenuous story of being robbed at gunpoint, but according to the New York Times (h/t Seatrade Cruise News), that seems to be what took place for Cindy Lloyd.
Lloyd and family flew to Rio to watch her daughter Carli Lloyd – the volleyball player not the star of Team USA’s women’s soccer team – compete in the Summer Games, and is staying in a Norwegian Cruise Line ship in Rio right next to the one that is accommodating Team USA’s basketball contingent.
Because of time constraints, the family checked in with the cruise line and then quickly left to watch Lloyd compete in a match — completely unaware that one piece of their luggage was about to meet its ultimate demise.
Upon returning, Cindy Lloyd found that one of her bags, a suitcase left with port officials that she assumed would be squired to her cabin, had been detonated, leaving nothing but a pile of blackened refuse and a very perplexed traveler.
Norwegian Cruise Line officials told TravelPulse that it was Brazilian authorities that commandeered the bag before it could be taken to Lloyd's cabin, as the bag set off security sensors upon review.
The Times report quotes the astonished mother who explains what she found when the group returned from her daughter’s competition last week.
“The handle was nowhere. It was completely blown up. There was some clothing," she said. "They use some sort of wet bomb, I think, because everything was wet. Some of the clothes were salvageable, but some were melted. Some had holes. My American flag was melted. And all the toiletries with caps had their caps blown off.”
Lloyd continues: “They took me back to this room, and there were some really scary people. They started interrogating me. I don’t know who they were, but there were five or six of them, all in uniform. And after about 10 minutes, they told me they blew up my bag.”
According to Lloyd, Brazilian officials had an apparent issue with an extra mobile phone that was packed away in the bag.
She believes this because the officials showed it to her after it was procured from the bag before it was exploded.
That’s right, the most remarkable part of this story is this little tidbit: “What she could not understand was why the authorities handed her the phone. They had opened the bag and retrieved the phone yet still proceeded to blow up the bag. And she could not figure out how a bag that had gone through several cities on different airlines without any suspicion was suddenly in pieces in front of her.”
This would be enough for just about any traveler to get home solely based on the steam fuming from the top of their irate head, but in this case, the Times reports Lloyd was in great spirits, which you might credit to being in a foreign country and watching her daughter compete at the highest level.
Moreover, Norwegian Cruise Line has done all it could to remedy the strange situation, which includes free food, wine and the offer to reimburse lost items.
These Olympics have housed more than its fair share of odd side notes. Amid green pools and bacteria-riddled water is one mother who was left to merely pick through a smoking pile of stuff she once considered carefully packed luggage.
For more Impacting Travel News
More by Gabe Zaldivar
Get Travel Deals and Travel News
Recent Travel Opinions
Features & Advice
Airlines & Airports
Destination & Tourism