Funniest Thing

December, 2021 Issue

This month’s winner is JIM ROYLE of San Diego, California:

On a trip around southwestern Western Australia in 2009, I got to the town of Esperance, with plans to visit Cape Le Grand and Cape Arid national parks. I intended to camp but wasn’t sure if there would be space in the campground at the more remote Cape Arid. If there wasn’t, I knew I wouldn’t have time to drive all the way back before dark. Ideally, I wanted to spend the night somewhere between the two parks. To see if there was any such place, I visited the Visitor Information Centre in Esperance.

Browsing the racks in the VIC, I came across a brochure for the Orleans Bay Caravan Park, which met my requirements; I could camp there. Turning over the brochure, I learned that the place was run by Chris and Guy Royle. Then I knew I had to stop there.

Pulling into the caravan park after a pleasant visit to Cape Le Grand, I found the office closed but managed to find someone to check me in. As he began the process, I said, “Are you Guy Royle? My name’s Jim Royle.”

He replied something like, “No kidding? My Dad’s name is Jim!”

Guy then called in his mother, and we compared notes about from where in England our families came.

She wanted me to meet her husband, so I drove her to the pier, where he was helping clean the day’s catch. We went through the same discussion of where our families were from, and I mentioned that my father and grandfather were also named James.

He looked at me and said, “My middle name’s William. What’s yours?”

It’s William.

I’d traveled 9,000-plus miles to meet someone with my own name.


Tell us about something humorous that happened to you while traveling outside the United States. There are no restrictions on length. ITN staff will choose each month’s winner, who will receive a free one-year subscription to ITN. Include your full mailing or billing address. Entries not chosen cannot be acknowledged.

 


November, 2021 Issue

This month’s winner is ROGER ECKER of Alameda, California:

The Soviet Union had collapsed and travel had opened up. My wife, Judy, and I, along with two of my brothers and their wives, rented a van in Vienna and traveled for several days through the Czech Republic, Poland. Slovakia and Hungary. In Poland, we arrived in Kraków in time for lunch at our hotel, the Holiday Inn.

Our waiter was lively, friendly and talkative. We learned that he had recently returned from exile in Paris, now that the borders were open.

My sister-in-law wanted to order iced tea with her lunch, but he did not seem to understand. My wife had been to Kraków with Project Hope and knew a little Polish, so she tried “herbata” (tea) and “zimno” (cold), but without result. I tried my French. No comprehension.

The waiter became thoughtful for a moment, then his face lit up with understanding. He turned, went to the kitchen and returned triumphantly with a pot of hot tea and a bowl of ice cream!


Tell us about something humorous that happened to you while traveling outside the United States. There are no restrictions on length. ITN staff will choose each month’s winner, who will receive a free one-year subscription to ITN. Include your full mailing address. Entries not chosen cannot be acknowledged.


October, 2021 Issue

This month’s winner is CAROL PEIM, from Hendersonville, NC:

In March 2019 I was in Australia buying boulder opals. They are opals that are still encased in brown stone. I asked the owner of the store what the brown stone was called and she said, “Einstein.” I looked puzzled and asked why it was called that and she just said that that was its name.

When I went to another store and they asked if I knew what the brown stone around the opal was called, I proudly answered, “Einstein.”

She smiled and said, “Yes, that’s right, ironstone.”

Go figure accents.


Tell us about something humorous that happened to you while traveling outside the United States. There are no restrictions on length. ITN staff will choose each month’s winner, who will receive a free one-year subscription to ITN. Include your full mailing or billing address. Entries not chosen cannot be acknowledged.


September, 2021 Issue

This month’s winner is RUSSELL GLUCK of Franklin Lakes, New Jersey:

My wife and I have observed that, during our travels abroad, the local guides generally have spoken English quite well, although they often had difficulties with idioms. An example of this occurred a few years ago while we were visiting China, where the guide’s command of English appeared to be excellent.

Our group had just gotten onto the tour bus in Beijing when one of our fellow travelers said something very complimentary to the guide. We all burst out laughing when she responded, “Oh, you’re just trying to smear me with butter!”


Tell us about something humorous that happened to you while traveling outside the United States. There are no restrictions on length. ITN staff will choose each month’s winner, who will receive a free one-year subscription to ITN. Include your full mailing or billing address. Entries not chosen cannot be acknowledged.

 


August, 2021 Issue

This month’s winner is RON OAKHAM of Phoenix, Arizona:

My long-time friend and travel companion, Mike, and I had arranged, via ToursByLocals.com, to take a privately guided tour in the ancient port city of Hoi An, Vietnam, during a port call at Da Nang on our January 2019 Southeast Asia cruise.

One stop on our tour was at a silk factory to view the whole process of making silk, from nurturing silkworms to very artistic finished products. Of course, the tour ended in the sales department.

One of the salesladies, seeing Mike looking at their selection of shirts, asked if he would like to buy a silk shirt. Mike, who is a very big man (and claims he is “in shape,” since round is a shape), responded that they probably didn’t have a shirt that would fit him. The saleslady assured him that they did, and another saleslady brought out an extra-extra-large shirt. Indeed, it didn’t fit.

Quickly, the saleslady said, “This is not a problem. We do make Buddha size also.”

Everyone laughed, and Mike, intrigued by imagining himself as a Buddha, told them to begin measuring. Before leaving Hoi An, Mike had his custom-made silk shirt in hand for just $70.


Tell us about something humorous that happened to you while traveling outside the United States. There are no restrictions on length. ITN staff will choose each month’s winner, who will receive a free one-year subscription to ITN. Include your full mailing address. Entries not chosen cannot be acknowledged.


July, 2021 Issue

This month’s winner is SONIA IBANEZ of Rego Park, New York:

Some time ago, my partner and I visited the Dominican Republic. Our resort by the beach was about 30 minutes from the capital, Santo Domingo. After an unpleasant incident with a taxi driver returning us from the downtown area, the next day we decided to try the public bus system, which had a stop right by our resort.

Since our destination was the last stop on the bus route, we sat in the very back seat, where we found another person already sitting by the window. As the bus was filling in with passengers, we noticed that in each row, by the aisle, there was a small folding seat that could be pulled out so people could sit when the rows were full rather than stand on the aisle. Even before we reached our final stop, the bus was packed.

Now and then, somebody would yell “Stop!”, and at the next stop, the driver would allow whomever wanted to get off to do so.

To our surprise, well before we reached the last stop, the person sitting next to us by the window called for the bus to stop. We wondered how on Earth this person was going to get through the packed bus to reach the front exit.

The bus stopped where it should, and our seat mate just stood up and jumped out the window.


Tell us about something humorous that happened to you while traveling outside the United States. There are no restrictions on length. ITN staff will choose each month’s winner, who will receive a free one-year subscription to ITN. Include your full mailing address. Entries not chosen cannot be acknowledged.

 


June, 2021 Issue

This month’s winner is MARY HESSE JENKINS of Santa Rosa, California:

Many years ago, I hitchhiked from Egypt to Morocco with my boyfriend. In Nabeul, Tunisia, we were picked up by this fellow about 30 years old. His English was only fair, but he mentioned something about Christmas and having a wife and two babies and not much money.

After about 15 miles, our driver veered off the main road and went down a dirt road. I whispered to my friend, “What is he doing? I’m scared.”

A little way down the dirt road, he stopped the car, opened the trunk and got out an axe. I was almost crying. I was petrified.

The man sauntered off into the forest, then came back with a Christmas tree. How do you spell RELIEF?!


Tell us about something humorous that happened to you while traveling outside the United States. There are no restrictions on length. ITN staff will choose each month’s winner, who will receive a free one-year subscription to ITN. Include your full mailing address. Entries not chosen cannot be acknowledged.


May, 2021 Issue

This month’s winner is WILLIAM SOLOF of Golden, Colorado:

Visiting Holland a few years ago, my wife and I obtained rooms at a farm outside Amsterdam. Our host had a ginormous Bouvier des Flandres named Berri.

At dinner that first evening, the dog kept pushing and sniffing us, and it became, to say the least, quite annoying. We finally asked our host about the dog’s behavior.

The answer was “When you return late this evening, you really want Berri to remember your scent.”

Oh! Sniff away, Berri dog!


Tell us about something humorous that happened to you while traveling outside the United States. There are no restrictions on length. ITN staff will choose each month’s winner, who will receive a free one-year subscription to ITN. Include your full mailing address. Entries not chosen cannot be acknowledged.


April, 2021 Issue

This month’s winner is EMILY MOORE of Greenville, Illinois:

Several years ago while visiting Salzburg, Austria, my husband and I took the funicular up to Hohensalz burg Fortress and enjoyed videoing the many scenes up there. This was back in the day when video cameras were still quite large, and my husband was carrying his around his neck, letting it hang down, which made it easy to turn on accidentally, wasting a lot of footage.

Back in our hotel room that evening, we were anxious to see the video we had taken that day. We turned on the camcorder and, squinting in the viewfinder, saw scene after scene of beautiful buildings and the great view of Salzburg.

We also heard our conversation, including, at one point, my husband asking me if I had the right change for the WC, and then the video continued: hiking boot, cobblestone, hiking boot, cobblestone…, then wood floor, hiking boot, wood floor, hiking boot…. Oh, no! He’s going to the men’s WC!

Sure enough, the video changed to… tile floor, hiking boot, tile floor, hiking boot, and then it stopped. Turned off just in time!


Tell us about something humorous that happened to you while traveling outside the United States. There are no restrictions on length. ITN staff will choose each month’s winner, who will receive a free one-year subscription to ITN. Include your full mailing address. Entries not chosen cannot be acknowledged.

 


March, 2021 Issue

This month’s winner is SARNIA GUITON of Nairobi, Kenya:

Some years ago, I was traveling with a group in Egypt. One day, we visited the Khan Al Khalili bazaar in Cairo. This was a rushed visit, so I returned by myself after the day’s guided tour had ended.

There were few people there on my return visit. While I was walking along the alleys between the shops, a man stepped out of his shop and called to me, “Lady, lady, come buy. I have everything in my shop. What you want?”

I replied, with a smile, “Nothing.”

“Oh, lady, I have lots of nothing!”

Then he realized what he had said. We both had a good laugh, and I went on my way.


 

Tell us about something humorous that happened to you while traveling outside the United States. There are no restrictions on length. ITN staff will choose each month’s winner, who will receive a free one-year subscription to ITN. Include your full mailing address. Entries not chosen cannot be acknowledged.