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Old 06-13-2012, 12:13 PM
 
Location: Viña del Mar, Chile
16,411 posts, read 26,228,275 times
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I witnessed a murder in Colombia
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Old 06-13-2012, 06:08 PM
 
Location: Duluth, Minnesota, USA
7,653 posts, read 15,333,374 times
Reputation: 6670
I went on a trip from Spain to Morocco four years ago. It was overland entirely from Barcelona to Marrakesh, and then consisted of a flight back from Marrakesh to Barcelona. The most interesting part of it (and probably of the entirety of my travel experience) was the last three or four days I spent in Morocco.

* Discussing Proto-Afro-Asiatic roots with a Madison, Wisconsin former para-legal who I just had met on an overnight bus ride I got no sleep on while being led on a tour of the mosques and kasbahs of Rissani by a "guide" who would later trick us into spending $60 on a night at a Saharan auberge, claiming there was no phone service and I would have to hire a $25 taxi to leave.

* Receiving FM radio stations from Italy on a dune in the Sahara (near the auberge) via sporadic E propagation.

* Being in the Rissani bus station in a pair of black athletic shorts (which apparently offends local sensibilities), finding an isolated spot and changing into long pants, walking into the luggage storage room to find the man who tags and stores the luggage sleeping on the floor, waking him up, walking back to the terminal, and being offered a potato-patty-thing by a man in a djellaba whom I shared no common language with.

* Riding the long-haul bus from Rissani to Marrakesh (which was stifling without A/C in the afternoon and freezing with no heat when I woke up after a brief nap once we ascended into the mountains) and befriending a young multi-lingual man from Errachidia, who got off the bus and bought snacks for me and later offered me accommodation at his house, which I (somewhat fearfully) accepted. It ended up being his rich French uncle's home, which had woodwork that looked like something out of the Alhambra, and contained western-style bathrooms and a very comfortable bed, and eating a Moroccan-French breakfast which featured olive oil that he had pressed from a tree three feet away from me. Later, flicking through the channels on his Hotbird-fed satellite system, and being able to watch TV from all over Europe, and stopping on a channel that was airing karaoke of one of my favorite Italian songs, and eating a luncheon feast with the aged French man and young Berber lad, served by his personal maid in courses, and being urged by the Moroccan kid to stay another night to attend his family reunion, which he finally gave up on after having to explain to him several times that I had a flight to catch tomorrow.
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Old 06-14-2012, 04:18 PM
 
170 posts, read 239,618 times
Reputation: 221
Quote:
Originally Posted by irman View Post
Is that not the *norm* in those parts of this wonderful world ???
Yeah but never really expected it
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Old 06-16-2012, 07:05 PM
 
Location: NC
11,918 posts, read 14,141,141 times
Reputation: 1328
Last summer I had a chance to visit the Old City in Cartagena, Colombia and was wearing some dangling earrings. I wasn't paying attention and wandered too close to one of the horses that pulled one of the buggies that carry tourists. I felt something reach out and nibble on my ear. Next thing I new, my earring was nowhere to be found. But the horse looked like he had had an interesting snack!
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Old 06-16-2012, 11:31 PM
 
Location: NC
11,918 posts, read 14,141,141 times
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Next thing I "knew" I meant!!
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Old 06-17-2012, 01:24 AM
 
Location: Newark, California
2,250 posts, read 1,210,782 times
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Not so much unusual but humorous. Once I was on a family trip and driving East on I-10 towards Phoenix in torrential rain when a flatbed semi drives by on the left and the flatbed was empty except for a little toy Tonka dump truck strapped down with those big thick straps right in the middle of the bed. We didn't stop laughing for a good 3-5 minutes.
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Old 06-17-2012, 02:38 AM
 
Location: Nantahala National Forest, NC
27,093 posts, read 5,888,275 times
Reputation: 30347
Yrs ago we went on an eco trip to Costa Rica. Our trip leader tried to find unusual and remote locations for us to stay. Our lodge on a mountain had only a one-lane, rutted and muddy road for entrance and exit...an open cart the only "vehicle"...

New Year's Eve, one woman got intoxicated and fell, breaking her arm...she was in pain but no way could she be taken down the mt in a cart-way too much jostling around that would increase the pain, plus it was dark etc. The lodge radioed out and they were told a helicopter would be sent to get her the next am...we gave her pain meds some of us had along for the trip.

The unusual part: because it was remote and forested, they had to use machetes to cut down small trees and brush etc to make a spot for the helicopter!! (no chain saws of course).

Good thing it wasn't a life-or-death situation!
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Old 06-19-2012, 10:50 PM
 
Location: Jacksonville/Afghanistan
328 posts, read 574,247 times
Reputation: 276
Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueWillowPlate View Post
Hah, I am enjoying everybody's stories. Budke, for real? I would love to hear more.
A couple of mine:
My first night in London in December 1974 I was eating a spaghetti dinner with friends when we heard a tremendous explosion that shook the windows of our flat. The IRA had exploded a car bomb outside Selfridge's department store on Oxford Street. (Fortunately warnings were given, and nobody was hurt, but there was a whole lot of damage.)

Much more recently, I spent a Halloween night in New Orleans.
I would not know where to begin. Good times.
Sorry, I started travelling for 3 weeks around Europe after I posted mine and I haven't checked this website since then.

But yea, I was arrested for some theft charge some Australian did. I apparently looked close enough to him and they arrested me as I was walking down the street with a few friends in Mandalay.

Two days later they caught the actual guy after I threatened to call my embassy and flashed a business card to a guy at the UN at them. The UN card was real, by the way. I met him on a flight from Bangkok a few months prior to Dubai. He was the Deputy Chief of Staff for the UN in Ivory Coast and was in Thailand for surgery after the building he was in was bombed during those post-election riots they had.

I'm still going to go back to Burma again.
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Old 06-23-2012, 12:10 AM
 
Location: Chicago area
14,374 posts, read 7,918,717 times
Reputation: 53477
We were waiting for a flight in Maroochydore Australia to take us to Sydney for our international flight to Hawaii. It was getting later and later and the airport was vertually deserted. We finally grabbed a cab to try to make our flight on time. The cab driver drove 100 miles an hour on the wrong side of the road (to us anyway). We got to the airport just as the plane was boarding. There were people there that ran us through the airport to make our flight. The only seats available were in first class. Sweet. We didn't have to pay for the cab because the airline was at fault for our flight being cancelled. The cab driver said they had an account with the airline and would bill them directly. We also received a check from the airline for the cab expense. I still remember seeing the Sydney Opera house against a beautiful blue sky and our camera being packed in the suitcase.
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Old 06-23-2012, 12:16 AM
 
Location: Chicago area
14,374 posts, read 7,918,717 times
Reputation: 53477
Quote:
Originally Posted by shocktop View Post
I was in a remote part in vietnam on vacation with a ton of other tourist. We rode in this van and was fitted like sardines. So the bus was full and this man was picked up on the side of the road. He went in the bus and had a huge bag and I thought it was food or some random items.

Next thing you know, it smelled like chicken poop and yes, there was livestock inside. So for about an hour I had to suffer the smell and the noises. But it was the funniest thing I ever encountered while traveling.
We had that experience going from Cozumel to Playa DelCarmen to catch a bus to Cancun. It was a couple of hours with no air in a sweltering hot bus on the Yucatan. We were the only Gringos on board with the locals and a chicken or two in cages. There was some military man guarding some place and topless girls on the beach in Playa DelCarmen. It was kind of scary as was in town Cancun. Never again.
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