Me: ‘Oh, look, there’s the castle where Richard the Lionheart was held prisoner in the 1100s!’
Him: ‘Ooh, look, they have Erdinger on tap. Let’s go here!’
Same person at dinner: a glass of wine and a glass of beer. Drink beer, then hold empty glass above head while drinking the wine. Shake glass. Look annoyed if not refilled within 15 seconds. Rinse and repeat.
Another friend disliked being at sea. Hello? You’re on a cruise! What exactly did you expect? That same couple then joined us on the Rocky Mountaineer train – and complained because they couldn’t get off it during the day. And the subsequent coach tour… well, it would have been so much better if I had driven them in a hire car. Who, me?
Not all bad
We travel with another couple who are a delight to be with. She goes with the flow, joins in anything. And he simply says, ‘Yes, I’m in,” or, ‘You know, I think I’ll stay back and read today’. Great! No hassle, no ill feelings.
Then there was the close friend on an Amsterdam-to-Budapest cruise, holding up a glass of fine German Riesling to the cruise director (or whatever his title was): ‘Listen, Aussies don’t like this sour slop. Find us a decent bottle of SSB’. To their credit, they did. I would have said, ‘The gangway is over there... madam’.
Another couple, in Germany: ‘I don’t like this foreign food. Haven’t they got anything decent?’
So, do I sound bitter? I certainly don’t mean to. We love to travel and love to help others experience what we do. Sometimes it’s hard, yes. But in the long run, it’s worth it.
When even the complainers and the whingers say, nostalgically, ‘Do you remember when...?’ you know you’ve had a win.