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Traveling, not funny at the time, but now...

Posted by purpleinopp 8b AL (My Page) on
Wed, May 2, 12 at 12:42

I chuckle when I recall the time my Mom & I got lost in Italy while my Dad & brother were asleep in the back seat. They woke up because we were laughing so hard about it, on a dirt road, waiting for a flock of sheep to cross, kind of wrestling with the map with the disagreement about which way should be "up".

A few days later, in Belgium, we went in a restaurant and it felt like lunch time to me, but the other 3 family members said they just wanted something to drink and a light snack. Using a translation book, hand gestures, and sound effects, I tried to order a plate of chicken, and thought it went well but wasn't confident if I had made the dark meat part clear but was hungry enough to eat white. Almost an hour later, the extremely nice lady brought us FOUR WHOLE CHICKENS! Then she tried to tie a bib on my very ticked off Dad.

The trip to Disney in Orlando in February when there were record-breaking low temps (below freezing) they 2 days we were there.

Same thing happened in mid-Oct of '08 in Tampa, high of 55!!

Going to Baltimore for a wedding the same day as hurricane Isabel and our hotel having no hot water or electricity. We had other options to pursue, but the electric workers who had been brought in from other states were stuck there for the night. Unfortunate irony.

At the beach in NC with a friend one time, cleaning up the kitchen. Found one more dish to put in the dishwasher and, although it was already running, I opened it to add that plate. Never knew there was such a thing as a dishwasher that does NOT stop when you open the door, but this rental house had one! In the split second it took to open it and yell Oh S*** and slam it shut, the entire kitchen and both of us were completely soaked! The ceiling, cabinets, counters, table, chairs, floor - all dripping wet. Much more water than could have possibly been in the dishwasher. I swear it happened to explode right when I happened to open the door. It took every towel we could find and half an hour to dry everything off, but man, we left that kitchen CLEAN!

What has happened to you out there that you now laugh about?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Traveling, not funny at the time, but now...

The bath room or toilet situation in some countries, Anywhere from a hole in the ground to some very fancy hotels trying to be fancy and combining a bidet/toilet. Not a good thing.


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RE: Traveling, not funny at the time, but now...

My daughter was on the iconic three month travel through Europe after she graduated from college. She asked me to come and join her for ten days. She, with the confidence of youth, instead of making reservations for a lodging, would find the listing of available places in the train station and we would pick one. It made for some interesting experiences.

We arrived in Edinburgh, Scotland, tired and anxious to settle in for the night after walking all day. This time we found a winner, a small, classy hotel on a side street. The room was cozy. The mattress on the bed was so thick that one almost needed a ladder to climb in. The attached bathroom was clean and in good condition, but was a remnant from a prior century. The sink was large, the toilet had a pull chain, and the tub was very deep and narrow, there was no shower.

I called "first dibbies" (a family tradition in a home with only one bathroom) and won the right to get the day�s grime off first. The tub held enough hot water for a delightful soak and I settled in with great contentment. After a while, there was a knock on the door and a voice inquired if I was all right. It was time to leave the tub - but I couldn�t get out! Now I knew that my hips weren�t that wide, it was just that there didn�t seem to be a level place to get any leverage to stand up. The water was getting cold and again the voice on the other side of the door was a bit more insistent - "are you sure you�re all right?" The story of President Taft stuck in the White House bathtub ran through my mind. At last, in desperation, I got on my knees, got my right hand under the lip of the tub (the old fashioned bathtub actually had a lip) and reached my left hand way over to an almost out of reach towel rack, and with great relief, heaved myself out, wondering what would have happened if I hadn�t been able to.

As I left the bathroom, I warned Claudia in very strong language that the tub was the spawn of Beezlebub, but she just laughed and I thought I heard her mutter something that sounded a bit like "she losing it" as she disappeared to finally get her share of the hot water. She was gone a long time - too long. She, young, strong, and slender, at last emerged quiet and red-faced. She had to admit that she had quite a struggle to get out of the tub too - but I never did hear about how mothers are always right.

I wonder if anyone who stayed in that room more than one night ever took more than one bath.


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RE: Traveling, not funny at the time, but now...

I can laugh at myself now, but for years I was embarrassed at having become lost in Pennsylvania. I who *never* lost my way, always knew what direction I was going, and could read the rarely needed maps upside-down and sideways, met my comeuppance one rainy night while driving my mother to the home of friend (about 50 miles from Lancaster).

Imagine a thunder-and-lightning storm pouring rain in sheets, a nice paved road that suddenly became a mud pit (no preceding warning signs for road work underway), occasional yellow sawhorses barricading one side of the road - flashes of lightning clarified that those were to prevent 20-foot dropoffs- large machinery tilted and crouched here and there, and NO signs. No detour-this-way, no arrows, no route numbers. After sloshing and slithering through the mud for an hour, the tires finally found pavement again. Big sigh of relief. Paved road soon ends at a T junction. No signs.

Mum, who always naps while traveling in bad weather, opened one eye and asked, "Are we there yet?" I mentally reached for my locating-compass and *that's* when I realized it wasn't working. I had absolutely no idea where friend's house was, or which direction held Lancaster, or even where I had been before the mud. Left turn or right turn were equally unknown. This had never, ever happened to me before; the feeling is akin to stepping on a step that isn't there, only more so.

Mum's intuition must have been working that night. She sat up and peered at the unmarked intersection, glanced at my [probably dumbfounded] face, slouched back down in her seat and, closing her eyes, said "Wake me when there's some coffee."

I did eventually find a small town with a small motel with a small cafe that provided a large cup of coffee for mum. I also found a waitress who said that kids had been removing the road signs "as a lark", and that I had chosen the wrong turn, thus ending up 20 miles opposite of where I meant to go.

The embarrassment came after the shock passed: mum began reading roadmaps very, very carefully. And stopped napping whenever I drove through a rainstorm.


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