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    Category: Geography

    You may call them “lost”, but we prefer the name “geographically disadvantaged.”

    Pales In Comparison To Wales

    | Wales, UK | Geography, Language & Words, Tourists/Travel

    (I work in a tourist information centre in a Welsh town. As well as its regular Welsh town name, the town has an anglicised version since it is a popular seaside destination for a large swathe of people from central England. The anglicised name sounds similar to another popular seaside resort that actually IS in England, but it’s a good 350+ miles away from us.)

    Me: “Bore da, Canolfan Groeso [Welsh town]. Sut gallai helpu chi? Good morning, tourist information [Anglicised name of Welsh town]. How may I help you?”

    Caller: “Yeah. I want sailing times for the ferries to the [island near the English town].”

    Me: “I’m afraid I don’t have that information to hand, sir. I can either give you the phone number for [English Town]‘s tourist services or I can pop you on hold whilst I look it up.”

    Caller: “But people sail from [town not far from English town] all the time. Why haven’t you got it to hand? I could look it up on the Internet myself!”

    Me: “We are [Welsh town], 350+ miles from [English town]. We tend to only provide information for [Welsh town] and the surrounding county.”

    Caller: “I don’t understand.”

    Me: “You’ve called Wales, sir. The services you want are in England.”

    Caller: “Wales?”

    Me: “Yep, Wales.”

    Caller: “So you’re not [English town]?”

    Me: “Nope, we’re [Welsh town].”

    Caller: “Well, what’s the point of that? Why would you do that?”

    Me: “Erm, I’m really sorry but I don’t follow?”

    Caller: “Why would you be in Wales?”

    Unable To Think Independently

    | Ireland | Geography, History, Tourists/Travel

    (Years ago, I worked in an Internet cafe. We have an American tourist come in and check his email. His email doesn’t have a traditional webmail service. You have to connect through a special program and chose your location.)

    Customer: “I can’t connect. It’s not showing my mail.”

    Me: “I see what it is. You chose to use the UK access number.”

    Customer: “But I’m in the UK.”

    Me: “No, this is Ireland.”

    Customer: “But Ireland is part of the UK.”

    Me: “No, only the north is.”

    Customer: “But you all speak English.”

    Me: “Yes, but we are still a different country. It’s listed under the Republic of Ireland in the drop down menu.”

    Customer: “But that is part of the UK. People here are British right?”

    Me: “No. In America you had a war of independence in 1775 right?”

    Customer: “Yes.”

    Me: “So did we, in 1921. If we’re British, so are you.”

    Half-Brain

    | Yosemite National Park, CA, USA | Extra Stupid, Geography, Tourists/Travel

    (A tourist walks up to me at the front desk.)

    Tourist: “Is that Half Dome outside?”

    Me: “Half Dome is one of the many mountain features outside if you face east.”

    Tourist: “Which one is it?”

    Me: “It is the one that is exactly half of a granite dome… to the east.”

    Tourist: “How much concrete was used to make it?”

    Me: “… Seriously?”

    Tourist: *stares blankly at me*

    Me: “I couldn’t tell you, but they decided to ditch the building project once they ran out of re-bar.”

    The Land Of The Free From Thought

    | USA | Bigotry, Geography

    (I am the manager at a discount department store, and one of our regular customers is a little bit flaky. She often talks to herself, repeating herself over and over.)

    Customer: “Where are you from? What country do you come from?”

    Me: “I was born in Colorado.”

    Customer: “You need to go back to your country at once. America is for Americans.”

    Me: “Colorado IS in America.

    Customer: “You must go back! You must go back! You must go back!”

    (She continues this ad nauseam until she finally leaves. A few weeks later she returns and purchases some items. Her total is $7.60 or so, and one of the coins she hands me is a Canadian quarter. I calmly inspect said quarter, and hand it back.)

    Me: “I can’t accept this coin. Here in America, we only accept AMERICAN currency. If you want to spend the Canadian currency, perhaps you should, you know, go back to Canada to do so.”

    (I haven’t had a problem with her since.)

    If I Know Him I’ll Eat My Hat

    | CA, USA | Extra Stupid, Geography

    (I vend at local arts and craft shows, selling handmade hats.)

    Customer: “These hats are great! Do you know Sandy?”

    Me: “Sandy? I don’t think so.”

    Customer: “Oh c’mon! Sandy! He makes hats, too! Y’know, in Arizona? He’s famous!”

    Me: “Nope. Can’t say I’ve met him.”

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