Funniest Thing

Tell ITN about the funniest thing that ever happened to you while traveling in a foreign country. There are no restrictions on length. (ITN prints no info on destinations in the U.S., Canada, Mexico or the Caribbean.) The ITN staff will choose the winner, who will receive a free one-year subscription to ITN. Entries not chosen cannot be acknowledged.

This month’s winner is PEGGY PARKER of Milwaukie, Oregon:

Several years ago my father and I took a tour of India. Due to a plague scare written up in the U.S. papers, there were only four of us in the group. An in-country flight was included.

The first plane did not arrive at all after a more than 4-hour wait at a very small airport. Finally, a substitute plane arrived and we boarded, filling the last few seats in the rear of the small plane.

The flight hostess then came around telling us all to put our seats in the upright position for takeoff. By this time, I had found that my seat back was broken and I was not able to keep it from falling backward. The hostess informed me that I must have the seat in the proper position for takeoff.

I explained the problem of the broken seat. I got a blank stare in return and another command to place my seat in the proper position. I again explained the problem and asked to be moved. I was informed there were no seats available, which I already knew.

Finally, she informed me very sternly that if I did not place my seat properly the plane could not take off. (By now, all the passengers on board were grinning ear to ear, aware of my dilemma.)

In desperation, I turned to the gentleman seated directly behind me, who had very long legs, and asked if he would use his legs to prop up my seat for takeoff. He did so, the hostess thanked me, and we took off.