I remember the closest I ever came to feeling true travel freedom. It happened just a few hours after I felt true travel non-freedom. It was about five years ago and I had just spent the week having fun on the beach in Tel Aviv, Israel and I headed to the airport. I've been targeted before. Single male. Small carry-on bag. A one-way ticket and a real bad attitude with ANY government "officials".
They pulled me aside.
"What were you doing in Israel?" they asked.
"Just having fun," I replied.
"Where did you visit?"
"Just the beach and the discos in Tel Aviv," I replied, holding back my natural response which is to say, "What business is it of yours?"
"You didn't visit Bethlehem or any of our famous religious destinations?"
"Nah," I said. Back then I was more interested in meeting the local girls than the tourist attractions.
"And where you are going?"
"Zurich," I replied, starting to get irritated.
"What are you going to do there?" they prodded.
"Have fun." I said plainly.
That was enough of that. They sent me to the "back room". They "asked" me to disrobe down to my underwear and went through my things meticulously. They'd hold up a computer mouse and say, "And this? What is this?"
I'd look at them with complete disdain. "It's a computer mouse... you've never seen one before?" I'd chide.
After about an hour of that they ran all my stuff through a machine. As they did, sirens began to wail and all ten of the "inspectors" in the room literally ran for their lives. I laughed heartily at them as they ran past me... which probably made them even more scared... but I couldn't help it, they looked like scared fools. I was alone in the room for a moment when a very big guy in a track suit grabbed me, ran out of the room with me and shoved me into a corner in another room and began cracking his knuckles.