A Guide for Traveling Simpletons (me)

Do you remember those educational films we watched in elementary school regarding etiquette in the classroom, cafeteria, playground, or bathroom?  Perhaps you’re not old enough to recall these, especially if you don’t know what a projector is.  These films were highly acclaimed short movies, including scripts displaying Steven Spielberg type quality. They made you want to be a well behaved boy or girl at Pastywood Elementary in any white picket fenced neighborhood throughout the country. Those films were both brilliant and quite entertaining.  Six, seven and eight year olds were held captive, I mean captivated by these dingy, gray screened masterpieces during the course of about one half of a delightful hour.  However, I’m a bit upset today with these productions, although maintaining profound reverence for them, because they never provided one for traveling abroad.  Here’s a script I will present for students all over the USA, hopefully enhancing their global travels.

(Only requiring narration from a man or woman, there is no dialogue from the actors, other than mouthing words)  In order to properly get a kick out of this, you must be 30 years of age or older and use the corny voices of the narrators..while using your imagination as to how stupid these actors were made to look…….here we go…….10  9  8  7  6  5  4  3  ….projection scramble…..and action.

Look, there’s Ben and his wife Brittney packing for a long trip to India.  See the smiles on their faces.  They look healthy and happily married.

Once fully packed, Ben and Brittney sadly say their goodbyes to their dogs, Jack and Etta.  Oops, don’t forget cats, Jazz, Lola, and Grandpa Dennis.  (insert narrator chuckle) Doesn’t this seem like one big happy family?  Off to the Airport.

Before entering the airport, they take one last look to see if they have their passports, plenty of reading material for a 22 hour flight, and Brittney’s plastic flask containing only three ounces of liquid.  Be careful, if you take more than that, those squirrels of authority figures may confiscate it.

Uh oh, here comes the strip search.  Look at how well behaved Ben and Brittney are while being subjected to such ridiculous measures.  They take it in stride and are prepared for flying.

Ben and Brittney ate a hearty meal prior to taking the flight because, “ouch”, airplane food can sometimes be scary, kids……..almost as much as the flight.  They seem to be taking all the steps necessary for a fun and safe flight, minus the scary food.

Twenty hours into the flight and, “wow”, they’ve almost made it.  Brittney looks like she can see the finish line, but, “hmm”, Ben has a strange look in his eyes.  Looks like twenty hours is far too long for flying without food for Ben.  Take a good long look at Brittney’s gesture towards her husband while he suggests such nonsense. (overacting with a scowl and shake of her head) Seems to me, the wife may be the one with the most common sense in THIS family.

After finishing his inflight meal, by the look on Ben’s face, I’d say he made a poor decision, wouldn’t you, kids?

Uh oh, look at that. Considering those hand gestures, well it seems as though Ben’s recognizing just what a fool he’s been.  No, those looks from side to side are not just to peer at his pretty wife or stare at the foreign fellow sitting next to him.  Rather, Ben’s clearly looking for a restroom sign before the fasten your seatbelt sign comes on.  Ding.  Remember, safety first.

Exiting the plane, even with that grimace on his face, it looks like Ben will make it to the proper place of doing what all of us sometimes have to do.  Now, he just has to make it to the hotel.

Upon checking into the hotel, the happy couple doesn’t look as happy as before, do they?  Brittney seems agitated, almost as though she wants to pick a fight with her silly husband.  That wouldn’t be a good start to this trip, would it?  They have to be in India for 16 days.

Why is Ben clutching his stomach while walking to find their room?  That’s right, he has to go good potty.  Well, Ben sure must be a lucky traveler, because he makes it to the room without an accident.  However, his raising a fist in triumph is only bad Karma for what is to come of the next three days.

Whoa! Brittney should be polite and turn up the volume on that television set, because Ben’s heading off to the bathroom again.  As you will learn, sound travels well in a small hotel room.

Oh no, Ben is now washing his hands with tap water!  That’s a no no in India.  Now he looks as though brushing his teeth is a good idea.  Don’t grab your toothbrush, Ben, unless you use bottled water to rinse out your mouth.  Poor, uneducated Ben looks like he’s made another vital error.

Ben’s mouth opening and closing in a fetal position like a fish out of water are not those of one talking or singing.  Those are referred to as groans.  We’ll speak more of those noises when we next approach, “The Guide to Deep Sea Fishing”, subtitled, “Just because You’re Fishing, Doesn’t Mean You have to be Puking”.

Spending the next three days in bed, amongst one other more familiar place close by, should we feel sorry for Ben?  No, because he didn’t follow the simple rules of traveling abroad.

(Most of this is relatively true.)


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