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  • October Theme Of The Month: Halloween!

    Category: Tourists/Travel

    It’s A Strange World After All

    | Orlando, FL, USA | History, Tourists/Travel

    (I work at Walt Disney World.)

    Me: “Hello, sir, how can I help you?”

    Guest: “Yeah, is Walt Disney going to be in the afternoon parade?”

    (After a short silence, I realize he’s not kidding.)

    Me: “Sir, I’m sorry but… Walt Disney died in 1966.”

    Guest: “What!? Then is his brother in the parade?”

    Me: “No, sir, his brother is dead, too.”

    Guest: “Then one of his sons?”

    Me: “Walt didn’t have any sons, sir.”

    Guest: “Well then, who’s head of the company?”

    Me: “Bob Iger, sir.”

    Guest: “…then why isn’t it called Bob Iger World?”

    Say Adios To Racism

    | Orlando, FL, USA | Bigotry, Family & Kids, Top, Tourists/Travel

    (I work in the guest services department of a major theme park. A Hispanic twenty-something mother and her young son approach the desk.)

    Me: “Yes, ma’am, how can I help you?”

    Mother: “Hello, I… no find… boy… hat.”

    Me: “Pardon?”

    Mother: “I no… look…”

    (I switch to Spanish, which I can speak fairly well after four years studying it in high school.)

    Me: *in Spanish* “Do you speak Spanish?”

    Mother: “Oh, yes! Thank you so much! While my son and I were riding the roller coaster, he lost his hat and we came to see if you could send anyone to find it.”

    Me: “I’m afraid we can’t send anyone to look under the roller coaster until after the park closes, but we can give you a gift certificate to buy a new hat for him at the shop.”

    Mother: “That would be excellent! Thank you!”

    (A burly-looking man, who is waiting for a park representative in the seating area, stands up and shouts at me.)

    Man: “Hey! What the h*** do you think you’re doin’, boy?!”

    Me: “Excuse me?”

    Man: “You talkin’ that [racial slur] language? The h***’s wrong with you? You just encouragin’ them—” *points at the mother and son* “—to come over here like they own this country!”

    Me: “Well, sir, I speak English and Spanish. This lady seemed to be having trouble with her English, so I thought I’d try Spanish.”

    (He walks over to the counter, and puts his face right in mine.)

    Man: “That’s a bunch of bull-s***! They came to our country, so they gotta learn to talk our language! You just gonna let them win by speakin’ their language?!”

    Me: “Uh… win what?”

    Man: “Man, it’s because of f****** like you that they think they can just come in here and tell us what to do!”

    (He gives the woman a dirty look, and she becomes very frightened. I push the silent security alert button under the counter. Suddenly the little boy moves, and stands in front of his mother.)

    Son: “Quit bein’ mean to my mama, poop head!”

    Man: “You gonna make me, you little [racial slur]?”

    Son:They will!”

    (He points out the glass door, as two security officers approach.)

    Security Guard #1: “I’m going to have to ask you to come with us, sir.”

    Man: “For what?! Defending America?!”

    Security Guard #2: “For threatening our other guests. If you don’t come peacefully, we will restrain you.”

    (The man grits his teeth, and seems to be considering fighting the guards, but after a moment he gives up and goes with them.)

    Me: “Adios!”

    Man: “F*** you, f**!”

    (I turn to the mother and son, and start speaking to them in Spanish again.)

    Me: “I’m sorry about that man, ma’am. He won’t bother you again.”

    Mother: “Thank you! I thought he was going to hit me.”

    Son: “I won’t let him hurt you, mama!”

    Me: “Young man, since you were so brave, I’m going to give you an extra gift certificate, so you can get a cartoon character doll, too.”

    Son: “Wow! You’re so nice, mister!”

    Moving Pictures From A Moving Story

    | Washington, DC, USA | History, Spouses & Partners, Top, Tourists/Travel

    (I am visiting the Holocaust Museum. I am in a room full of framed pictures and digital displays, with picture slideshows of the war crime trials. There are some teenagers sitting around playing on their phones. An old couple are looking at the slideshows.)

    Old Woman: “How do you get the pictures to stop moving?”

    (She tries touching the screen.)

    Old Man: “Here, let me try.”

    (They both assume it is a touch-screen, and are pressing hard against it.The teenagers see this, and start laughing to each other.)

    Teenager: “Look at these senile old people!”

    (They begin filming the old couple, who are still trying to get the slideshow to stop. A tour guide has heard the noise, and comes over to see what is wrong.)

    Guide: “Can I help you?”

    Old Woman: “Yes, what button do we need to press to get the picture to stop?”

    Guide: “You can’t stop them; it’s a looping slideshow. I think it’s only for two minutes, so you can just wait for it to repeat.”

    Old Woman: “But those pictures change so fast!”

    Guide: “Is there a reason you need to see all these pictures?”

    Old Man: “Yes, I’m looking for the pictures of the bench.”

    Guide: “Oh, well there are several photos just over here from the trials. Here’s one.”

    (He directs them to the opposite wall to several pictures hidden among a few dozen others.)

    Old Woman: “There you are!”

    (She grows very excited, and points to the picture as though she had spotted something she had been looking for.)

    Old Man: “Yep, got my American Flag pin on.”

    (The old man reaches into his coat pocket, and shows the tour guide the pin. The teenagers have shut up by this point, and stopped filming. The tour guide then leads the old couple around the corner to show them more pictures of the trials. I walk up afterwards, and look at the picture. Seated at the bench were the Nazi war criminals that had caused so much death and destruction. Behind them are a line of American soldier guards. While most of the men have no medals or pins on, I spot the one soldier wearing an American flag pin over his heart. Don’t judge a book by its cover. That same man who had difficulty with a foreign device was entrusted to stand watch over some of the worst men of the twentieth century.)

    Fruit Loopy

    | Los Angeles, CA, USA | Bad Behavior, Bizarre, Money, Tourists/Travel

    Me: “Alright ma’am, I’ve entered all your requests in the reservation. Have a great day!”

    Caller: “Wait, I’m not finished! I want a fruit basket in my room to be there when I arrive. And there better not be any grapes! They’re nasty! They’re dirty and full of germs! I only want fruit with skins I can peel off!”

    Me: *being a fellow germophobe* “I definitely understand that. Bananas and oranges.”

    Caller: “If I find any skinless fruit, I will immediately throw the entire fruit basket out of the window into the ocean! Do you hear me?”

    Me: “Ah, well then we have to move you to a room with a balcony, because the window in your stateroom doesn’t open. The upgrade would cost $2,100.00, is that okay?”

    Caller: *long pause* “No, I will just carry it upstairs to the deck and do it from there.”

    Me: “Alright, sounds great. Anything else I can help you with?”

    Caller: “No thanks dear, have a good day.” *click*


    | Whitehorse, YT, Canada | Food & Drink, Top, Tourists/Travel

    (I work in a tourist souvenir shop. On this day, we receive much-needed maple products, including maple candy, syrup and the like. I am busy labelling the new stock as my coworker receives the stock.)

    Me: “Well, I know there will be Japanese tourists in today.”

    Coworker: “…Huh?”

    Me: “Last time we got our maple shipment in, we sold half of it before it was all completely in the system. They just seem to know when we have it. The Japanese tourists just have a sense for it. We’ll be busy tonight.”

    Coworker: “Oh, really?”

    Me: “Yep, just you wait…”

    (An hour later, two Japanese tourists come into the store and take a look around as we are busy working. When they are finished, both come up to the counter with baskets of maple syrup bottles. Once I’m finished helping both of them, I turn to my coworker.)

    Me: “Well what have you got to say to that?”

    Coworker: *not believing me* “No comment.”

    (About twenty minutes later, I hear the door open, but it doesn’t shut immediately. Curious, I look up in the direction of the door.)

    Me: “Oh, look, they brought friends!”

    Coworker: *looks up and at the front* “Holy crap!”

    (A group of about nine Japanese tourists walk in, all immediately heading for our ‘maple’ section of the store. Due to the small size of the store, it is a lot of people to have in at once. We help them as best we can. Despite there being a huge language barrier, I recognize some words and we are able to help each one of them as they patiently wait their turn in line. Once they are all finished and things are once again quiet, I turn once again to my coworker.)

    Me: “So, you believe me now?”

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