Travel whoops moments

Heading to the airport to catch your flight and then you realize it does not leave until tomorrow, ordering something completely different than you wanted in a foreign language, and losing your passport on the beach while afterwards back home you discover it was still in your bag. These are all things we have experiences with while traveling. I call them travel whoops moments. To prevent them from happening again I thought I could share some of mine with you!

  • It is better to be early than to late, but this was a bit over the top. In Minneapolis USA I visited my father (who was working there at the time) who brought me to the airport in the middle of the night, because my flight was going to leave at this sleepy hour. And sleepy I was, because as soon as I tried to check-in the steward started laughing and told me that there were no flights scheduled at this hour of the night. The good thing was that because of this I could still head back to my comfortable bed and leave at 02:00 pm instead of 02:00am…

sleeping airport

  • “Bzzzzzz” says our little friend mister Mosquito from Africa. An-noy-ing, yes, but if you have the right sleeping gear and some repellent with DEET you will be just fine. At least that is what I thought when I was living in Nairobi, Kenya. But somehow I started to feel bad and had go see a doctor – well, more like a witchdoctor that is. He checked my blood, and discovered Malaria. How is that possible I thought. I was taking the Malarone pills the Dutch doc from the GGD told me to take, but not in Nairobi. Malaria was not active in Nairobi according to the docs back home. Eventually, after a week in bed eating only wet rice and losing some pounds, the Malaria left and I did not get the parasite. I had been taking the Malarone pills against the Malaria parasite in the other areas of Kenya and I guess therefor I did not get the parasite after this Malaria ‘attack’. Anyway, take enough anti-malaria pills with you, just in case, if you are going to visit a tropical destination.


  • A Dürüm with what? Some years ago I did not speak any Spanish yet (now I do) and when I decided to go for a Dürüm, when I got hungry, my Spanish just could not get any worse. I was in Barcelona and wanted a Dürüm with chicken. In Spanish that would be a Dürüm con pollo, but I asked for a Dürüm con polla, with an “A“. All the guys working at the place started laughing, but looked at me at the same time with eyes telling me it is okay because I am a bloody tourist.
    Pollo means chicken, polla means penis…


  • Taxi!!! Do you remember the name Eyjafjallajokull? Probably not, I mean I cannot even pronounce the thing. It is a volcano in Iceland that erupted in April 2010 causing an ash plume. Due to the ash many flights to Europe got cancelled, so guess where I was heading to? Jup, Europe! I got stranded while I was visiting my dad in Singapore who was working there at the time – not the worst country to get stranded, and of course I spent my extra days in Asia visiting bounty beaches. The airline kept telling us (my father and I were going to fly back home together) that we should go to the airport with our suitcases packed every day and check if they have room for us on any extra flight (if a flight is operating). We skipped that offer and decided to wait for them to check in on us and tell us when they can arrange our flight. So after about a month, or maybe a week, I do not remember… they called us and told us that tonight a flight would leave and we can be on it. We packed everything, checked-out of the hotel, got into a cab and later we arrived at the airport of Singapore. As soon as we wanted to check in our bags we discovered that my fathers bag was missing! Oh My God! Do not tell me we have to go back to the hotel again and miss this flight? That I will probably have to extend my holiday again and drink more cocktails on the beach? Noooo.. Luckily the hotel saw that the taxi did not put my father’s bag into the trunk and so he went back to pick it up as I waited at the airport. Eventually everything happened right on time, though a little bit stressy. What have we learned today? Always check if the cab-guy puts all your bags or suitcases in the trunk. Even when you are traveling with someone else, like a friend or a family member, check their bags too 😉


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Ever since I left my home country I felt at home at any other place I went to. I enjoy getting to know more cultures by talking to strangers and hearing their philosophy about life. Speaking with gestures when you can not find a shared language, finding places only the locals go to and learn about their customs and values. Hanging out with local people makes me happy. The experience of every new place is a step out of your comfort zone where I like to wander around until it feels like a second home.
4 Comments on “Travel whoops moments
  1. hahaha I love the Polla instead of Pollo part ^_^ TOO funny!! I had a similar situation once.. I said to an irish guy: Enjoy your MALE instead of enjoy your meal… Whoopps….

  2. Haha! I have made plenty of travel mistakes too, like going to the wrong airport and missing my flight. And regarding language mistakes, a friend of mine tried to tell the doctor in Taiwan that his back hurt but ended up saying vagina instead!

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