Funniest Thing

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.


February, 2021 Issue

This month’s winner is DOLORES (LOIE) MAMINSKI of Westminster, Maryland:

Years ago, on a trip to Italy with friends and their young son, we chose a small restaurant in Naples for supper.

Our friend had noticed in another restaurant diners being served a carafe of white wine with a peach inside, and she wanted to order it for our meal. She inquired in her newly acquired version of Italian if we could have a carafe of wine with a peach.

The server looked mildly puzzled but soon returned holding in one hand a carafe of white wine and in the other hand a fish by the tail. He had a small smile on his face.

We guessed he was accustomed to tourists practicing the local language without realizing the Italian words for peach (pesca) and fish (pesce) sound quite similar, but, being a professional, he wanted to make sure a fish in wine was not our choice.

Or maybe he was just having some fun with Americans!


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.

 


January, 2021 Issue

This month’s winner, JEFF GARRETT of Lauderhill, Florida, is a tour operator:

On my fall “5 ’Stans” tour in 2018, our group made a pit stop near lake Issyk-Kul in Kyrgyzstan. At this stop there is a modern gas station, with a beautiful Western WC, and a modern supermarket, where our groups always stock up on “goodies.”

Even though there were ample bottles of drinking water in our Sprinter van for everyone, one couple on the tour, Jay and his wife, Kim, were always stocking up on bottled water on their own.

Well, Jay emerged from the market with a HUGE bottle of what he presumed was drinking water. When he asked our guide, Ramil, about the plastic bottle having a blue color, the guide read the Krygyz print.

Jay and his wife were the proud owners of a bottle of glass cleaner.

We told Jay that we would gladly put him to work cleaning the windows on our van.

 


 

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.

 


December, 2020 Issue

This month’s winner is DEB KALIKOW of Westford, Massachusetts:

I was on a tour of France when our group visited the Fragonard perfumery in Grasse. After being shown the entire interesting perfume-making process, from flowers to packaging, we ended up at the gift shop, of course.

I hadn’t used perfume in years, but, looking around and testing a few scents, I found one I liked. It smelled luscious, and I thought it would make a fine souvenir of France, so I bought a bottle.

Being newly remarried, I wasn’t yet sure of all my husband’s likes and dislikes, such as which perfume he might enjoy on me, and he hadn’t accompanied me on this trip. (He was still working; l was retired.)

After I finished in the shop, I went outside to wait for our tour bus to return and chatted with one of my tour mates. He and I had previously bonded over the fact that both he and my husband had been in the Marine Corps. As they say, once a Marine, always a Marine.

My friend noticed that I was caring a Fragonard bag and asked, “Did you buy something here?”

I replied, “Yes. I hope my husband likes it.”

He looked at me in wide-eyed shock and said, with great indignation, “He’s a Marine! He’ll NEVER wear perfume!”


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.