I've been on a handful of trips where travel companions suddenly turn into the companion from hell. Sometimes they are foreigners on a group tour, other times it is a family member or friend who I adore but drives me nuts on a particular day.
Traveling with others is a litmus test of patience, flexibility, and ability to compromise. We all have our limits. And when someone tests those limits, the results can get ugly.
I'd like to hear from you all. Any readers with quick stories that are funny, a little scary, or at very minimum just plain "story worthy?" Let's hear 'em. I'll start it off and hope to see comments with other stories. Think of it as blog therapy.
My travel companion from hell: While traveling overseas for the very first time (to Colombia, no less) for a wedding, two us went on an day trip. The excurion was a small cruise off the coast of Cartegena. The Caribbean waters and tiny droplets of islands were intoxicating. Scenery I'd only seen on romantic travel brochures floated past me. I was trippin' on the good vibes. However, on the cruise, my friend and I met two other American tourists - the only other Americans on the entire boat (probably in the entire country at that time). We gringos sat near each other to chat since we all barely spoke Spanish. The American woman of the couple was a stereotypical, unworldly, rich American. Demanding. Loud. Snotty. English only. And she pronounced "hola" with the "h." I was embarrassed to share a flag with this woman. At one point the woman grabbed my arm and said, "Will you order me a soda?" I took her money to get the drink. When I returned I handed her bottled water as that was the only non-alcoholic drink they had and she yelled at me and - here's the kicker - pinched my arm hard with fury.
I've since had many pleasant experience meeting other Americans abroad while traveling. But this woman put new meaning with the term "bad trip." I felt sorry for her husband who looked like he couldn't say boo for fear she might strike him.
Any other travel companions from hell out there? Please avoid using real names.