Jetsetting Americans Share Their Most Clueless European Vacation Moments[rebelmouse-image 18348959 is_animated_gif=
_There is a whole, big, crazy world out there to go see. And when Americans wander beyond the gates they can be shocked by some of the cultural differences. Or just by the difference in diet and vodka. _
Redditor _Cyber-Goninquired what are the biggest surprise that await American travelers abroad. _
WHO DOESN'T LOVE CALAMARI?
Had a positive WTF moment in Greece in the eastern Peloponnese where I saw a guy walk down to the end of a pier and throw an actual trident into the Aegean and pull out a wriggling octopus. Dude walked up the beach and handed it over the deck railing to a chef.
NEVER DRINK THE WATER![rebelmouse-image 18351869 is_animated_gif=
Spent a summer in Germany. They had the cleanest/safest/best tasting tap water, but nobody drank it and they called it toilet water.
Also the older people in village seemed super grumpy and mean and would never smile or respond if you said hello or good morning, BUT if you asked them a substantive question, like how to get to the museum, they would spend 15 minutes telling you the fastest way to get there, the scenic way to get there, everything interesting you should do on the way there, why that museum isn't actually that good and you should go to this other museum instead, all the different ways to get to the better museum, and where their grandmother used to live before the war.
SOCCER IS NO JOKE![rebelmouse-image 18351870 is_animated_gif=
Going to a soccer game in Italy. When buying a ticket, they needed to know which team I was rooting for to determine where I could sit. Then, during the game, people were setting things on fire.
SUNDAY FUNDAY![rebelmouse-image 18351871 is_animated_gif=
WTF Europe: When you realize that everything is closed on Sunday, because Sunday is sacred. Not in a religious way necessarily, but in a "our free time is sacred." Took a train through the German countryside on a Sunday and the fields were just full of people doing stereotypical free time activities: afternoon strolls, kites and model airplanes, fishing, etc.
THE BIRDS! THE BIRDS![rebelmouse-image 18351872 is_animated_gif=
We were driving through Spain, and to the side of one of the roads, we noticed these MASSIVE bird nests in the high power electrical towers. They were at least twice the size of eagles nests that I had seen. And there were so many of them!
Then we saw these giant birds in them! We stopped by the side of the road and tried to take some pictures (didn't have a great zoom lens, sadly). But no one else was stopping. It was so odd. We are accustomed to at least a few people stopping to watch the osprey, eagles, or other birds where I'm from. So a few days later, we are chatting with a German tourist, and we bring up the birds... I think she thought we were joking until we pulled out the pictures. Then she started laughing. Storks. Those are storks. Of course, don't you know that? They are everywhere and such a nuisance. Don't you have storks in America?
Then she looked confused. Well, if you don't have storks, who brings the babies in kids stories? Storks. Um...how does that work?
And that was when we realized that the story of the storks makes a whole lot more sense when storks are nesting on every chimney, tree, or tall place....
BOW DOWN TO ROYALTY![rebelmouse-image 18356241 is_animated_gif=
Went to Dover England and saw a FREAKING castle. The newest section was built like 300-400 years before my country was founded. Turned a corner and the next part was 200 years older than that. Ten minutes later walk up to a Roman light house built 2000 years ago. Daaaammmnnn!!
PENNIES ADD UP.[rebelmouse-image 18978480 is_animated_gif=
When I visited Prague and water cost two crowns and beer cost one.
UMBRELLA... ELLA... ELLA...[rebelmouse-image 18978481 is_animated_gif=
One time in Rome, it started pouring. As I sought shelter, I saw an older man selling one single umbrella. Strange as it was, I needed that umbrella, so I haggled with him and settled on 3 Euro (he had the upper hand in that transaction).
I wander over to a coffee shop to dry out for a little bit. When I go to leave, the umbrella is no longer in the bucket by the door. Upset at myself for being so trusting, I head into the rain again. Guess who I see? The same old man selling the same umbrella. I try to confront him about stealing back my umbrella, but he claims not to remember our interaction at all. It's pouring and I have a number of miles to walk, so I go through the same charade with him again to re-procure the umbrella.
At least this time he took 2 Euro...
IT'S ALL IN THE SERVICE.[rebelmouse-image 18352416 is_animated_gif=
Went to Sweden on a vacation package. Stayed at a wonderful historic hotel for part of the trip that had a restaurant inside of it. Part of our package called for a free dinner at the hotel and we had asked that it be the night we arrived.
We arrived and got settled in our room and then went to check out the restaurant. As soon as we walked in, there was no one there, only a hostess. She immediately said they were expecting us and we could sit anywhere. There was no one else in this gorgeous, ornate restaurant. A waiter came out and said they had prepared a special meal for us. We asked why it was so empty and he said the restaurant was closed one day a week and today was that day.
We were shocked, we apologized profusely and told them that we had booked through another company and would have just scheduled it for another day. He said it was no problem and we had some free extras such as wine and dessert. The main course ended up being a huge piece of meat, which we jokingly said must have been because we were big fat Americans. No one rushed us, we had a great time, and after we left they closed the restaurant for the night.
It was a total WTF moment because if you booked something like this in America, they'd either force you to reschedule or just have the restaurant closed with no explanation.
WHAT'S THE RUSH?[rebelmouse-image 18978482 is_animated_gif=
every meal in Paris taking 3 hours.
I loved the culture and I'm all about eating a relaxing meal, but sometimes it was just like "wtf" when we were on a schedule and had to meet up with a tour group or had reservations for something.
THOSE PESKY DANES.[rebelmouse-image 18978483 is_animated_gif=
My American friends who visited The Netherlands: Completely surprised by our bicycle 'things':
a) so many bicycles -everywhere-
b) everybody riding without a helmet
c) so many different bicycles
HISTORY ALWAYS PLAYS A PART.[rebelmouse-image 18350897 is_animated_gif=
It was subtle at first, but it eventually boggled my mind how old everything was and it was still integrated into everyday life. Like in the UK, drinking in pub that had been in the same spot since the 11th Century, or eating dinner at restaurant in an 18th cathedral. Or in Prague going to club in a 14th Century stone cellar or staying a hotel/brewery that had be operating since the 15th Century.
The oldest building in my vicinity is from the 1750s (which is prehistoric by US standards), but, like, someone in Europe sees a building that is half a millenia old that no one is using and they're like, "Let's turn this into a disco." I loved it.
NO FLIES FOR YOU![rebelmouse-image 18978484 is_animated_gif=
For me it was a lack of insects in England. Not that they don't exist but I'm from Michigan with lots of swampy land around me. When I showed up at my dorm and saw there was no screen on my window I was just thinking about all of the bugs that are gonna get in my room. I got one fly the entire month stay there.
I THOUGHT BIRTHDAY SUITS HAD AGE RESTRICTIONS.[rebelmouse-image 18978485 is_animated_gif=
At a lake retreat in Germany, kids playing in/around the lake naked.
GOTTA GO GOTTA GO GOTTA RIGHT NOW![rebelmouse-image 18978486 is_animated_gif=
Paying to use a public restroom. I get why though. Just a horrible feeling if you really had to go and you don't have any change.
HANGING OUT IN A GHOST TOWN.[rebelmouse-image 18349533 is_animated_gif=
I was in Italy and wanted to grab a bite and a beer for some lunch. I left the flat and I was flabbergasted to find the entire town was empty. Everything was closed, not even the neighborhood dogs were around!
KEEP IT SPIC AND SPAN.[rebelmouse-image 18978487 is_animated_gif=
Every night in Spain, around 3 a.m. this MASSIVE fleet of street scrubbers, vacuum-mobiles, and water hoses appeared and cleaned the entire city for about an hour. It was like ~100 people every night just cleaning the city. The following morning, all of Salamanca was spotless. That s*was magical.
EVERY CALORIE COUNTS.[rebelmouse-image 18354179 is_animated_gif=
In Spain, everyone appears to be very thin, yet I swear eats a loaf of bread a day.
DO YOU FEEL THAT NEED FOR SPEED?[rebelmouse-image 18978488 is_animated_gif=
In Italy there is virtually no threshold for how much distance should be left between a speeding car and any obstacles (including pedestrians) it is zooming past.
A bus driver will rush down a narrow cobblestone street with about a centimeter to spare between the sides of the bus and any parked cars, walls, ancient monuments, or playing children.
HEALTHCARE FOR ALL! WHY IS THAT HARD?[rebelmouse-image 18978489 is_animated_gif=
When I? visited the hospital and had X-rays done, spoke with two doctors and was triaged by a nurse, all with no health insurance, and my total bill was 24euros. Then I? had to pay 10 additional euros for some painkillers, again with no insurance or anything.
Our parents should be able––and willing––to protect us and to fight for our best interests. But that's not always the case, and the unlucky ones can spend years seeking mental health counseling to figure out what went wrong.
Our parents are human and they have the ability to disappoint us and devastate us like anyone else. It just hurts a little more, as we were reminded once Redditor banbidoe asked the online community,
"What's the worst thing your parents ever said to you?"
"My family never went on vacations, we couldn't afford them."
"When I was 18 my parents told me that they were going out west to see the Grand Canyon, do some hikes, etc. I exclaimed how cool and fun that would be. Then my dad said, "Oh, you're not going. You're staying here with Sally (16). We're only taking Mary (14) and Jeff (12)."
"I froze for a minute, trying to compute what he said. "Why can't we come?" I finally asked."
"You have summer jobs."
"We can take time off..."
"Well, we just can't afford to take you."
"They had a really fun time without us. I still think about it over ten years later."
"Gotta be when I was 12..."
"Gotta be when I was 12 and my mum told me my uncle fancied me. She said it so matter of factly. Like it was the most natural thing in the world. I've never really been able to get past that."
"10 years later..."
"One month after my sister died unexpectedly, I was having a complete breakdown about it and called my mother for comfort."
"Get over it." She told me, before hanging up."
"10 years later in therapy, I was finally able to trace the start of our relationship breakdown to this moment."
"I hate that phrase now."
"I'm 30 now..."
"My dad telling my brothers (10 & 6 years old) and I (8 years old) over and over again that we should go find a new dad because he didn't want to be ours anymore while ranting and raving after our mom served him with divorce papers. The best part is that he would also tell us "You'll understand why when you're older." I'm 30 now and the only thing I understand is that he's a lunatic."
"They told me..."
"They told me they didn't want me, they wanted a girl so they tried again and got lucky and had the girl they wanted."
"I'm adopted, and at one point my mom said to me "If I had known you'd grow up to be so screwed up I would have picked another child," as if my physical conditions are my fault somehow and my mental disorders aren't at least in part caused by how she raised me."
"That I was faking my depression..."
"That I was faking my depression, and I need to "man up."
"When I was 15..."
"When I was 15, my dad patted my belly and said "put on some weight haven't you?"
"Which is probably not the worst thing in this list, but as I was already struggling with my body image, this was the last nudge I needed to push me into an eating disorder."
"After my sister died..."
"After my sister died, I was in a very dark place mentally / emotionally. The way I dealt with the grief was to keep it bottled up inside - I know it wasn't healthy, but that's how I survived the trauma. My mother was frustrated that I never talked about my sister. I couldn't even say her name or visit her grave. I did attend the funeral, but after that I went back to my silent grief."
"One day, my mother was pushing me to talk about what happened. I was frustrated because I didn't want to talk about it and she wouldn't let it go. My mother told me I disgraced my sister's memory by not talking about her, and it broke me."
"My Dad once told me..."
"My Dad once told me that no girl would love me because I'm fat. That cut me like a knife! There are people who love fat people!"
"Who does he think he is?"
The ones we love the most absolutely know the right buttons to push when it comes to an insult.
Do you have similar experiences to share? Let us know below.
It's human nature to have various opinions about the people we come across.
What sets us apart from heathens is that we keep our judgments to ourselves–especially when they are not of the flattering variety.
The people who probably interact with strangers the most are those who work in any type of service industry, and they should be good about keeping their mouths shut if they don't have anything nice to say about a customer or of their purchases.
But Redditor gracoal gave those who worked in retail the opportunity to share their anecdotes by asking:
"Cashiers of Reddit, what items make you silently judge the people who buy them?"
When it came to the sale of beverages, these Redditors had some interesting thoughts.
"When I worked at the liquor store we only judged people if they came back several times a day."
"Edit: I only did this because it was illegal to sell alcohol to drunk people, when you have someone making multiple trips during a shift they may be drunk, whether or not they where an alcoholic wasn't my concern, but yes I had to judge them."
"When I was drinking heavily every night I’d go to a different store each day so as to avoid judgment lol"
Quality Of Water
"The ethos water at Starbucks. We literally give out free water and it’s way better than the ethos water like sir."
Some of these are examples of how cashiers shouldn't respond to items being purchased.
"This was about ten years ago, but the only time I judged someone was also when I lost a little faith in humanity."
"Guy in his late twenties comes through the line. Belt is filled with junk food; chips, chocolate, popcorn, candy, etc. The whole time I'm ringing him up he's saying how glad he is to be out of the house, that the baby has a flu or something and hes at his wits end."
"Fair enough, I suppose."
"I get to the total, tell him, and wouldn't you know, he's short a few dollars. So what does he put back? The only non-juck food item: children's cold and flu medicine."
"I still judge that man, and I don't even remember his face."
"At the pharmacy I had a guy not buy an epipen for his child with a $50 copay but pay $100 for tretinoin which was not covered for his own acne which, honestly wasn’t that bad. He really could have used an OTC med. I felt sorry for his offspring."
"I bought toilet paper and laxatives at the same time. Teenage cashier looked at it and got the giggles. This got the bagger laughing. I just stood there stupidly pretending it wasn’t funny."
"Not judged as much as hated when people bought dozens of those individually wrapped snack sized cheese slices. At my store we had to scan each one of them."
"🧀 Beep 🧀 beep 🧀 beep 🧀 beep"
A Lesson Learned
"Currently working as a cashier and I was reading thru these thinking 'what was something I really judged people for?'"
"Then I remembered this one customer I judged wrongly. Every morning this one guy would bolt into the store, go to the drink aisle, and come out with 5-6 energy drinks. He would come everyday so one day, I made a joke and said: 'don't drink them all in one setting.'"
"He then proceeded to tell me that it's to help with his ongoing chemo therapy. Stopped judging people based on their items after that one."
It's not always the merchandise that prompted judgment.
Checking The Attitude
"I was a cashier for 3 years, and I can't think of a single thing that anyone bought that I judged them for."
"I certainly judged people for their attitudes, for inappropriately asking for a discount, or for various other petty things, but never for the items they were buying."
"back when i worked nights at a gas station, i had a lady come in wanting a sale that had ended the previous week. when i refused to give it to her she did the whole 'DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM?!' bit, and swore her uncle owned the gas station chain and was going to have me fired. i really didn't give a damn. i made $12/hour. i told her go for it. then kicked her out."
"talked to my boss the next day who was a little peeved i didnt give her the discount but said i did the right thing by kicking her out because she doesn't tolerate customers being rude to her staff. never did find out if she really was the niece of the gas station owner, and never got fired. quit a year later for a better paying job."
These former cashiers couldn't be bothered with assessing the behavior or shopping preferences of customers.
"Nothing. Absolutely nothing. I barely pay attention to what im scanning most of the time. You could point a loaded gun at me and leave a note saying you're gonna rob me. So long as I swipe it through and hear a beep, I won't even flinch."
Free From Judgment
"I cashiered at a grocery store for 4 years, same. I never judged people for what they were buying. I did judge people for being rude, for complaining about paying for disposable bags, for eating produce before paying for it, and for lying to my face to save a couple pennies. You can try switching the produce stickers but I can tell the difference between a Fuji and a Sweet Tango."
"Something I always wished people knew that we DO NOT judge people for"
- "having their card declined. If you only knew how frequently this happened all day long. No one cares and I do believe you when you tell me the account has money. I believe you. Cards get declined for all kinds of reasons, all day long. It is not a big deal at all."
- "I do not judge you for bringing a reusable bag from a different grocery store. People seem to think it’s bad etiquette or something and would always apologize for using a trader joe’s bag or something. No one cares. At all. Use whatever reusable bag you like, it’s just a bag."
The Wild Lovers
"I worked as a grocery store cashier many years ago when I was in college. I saw lots of weird stuff, but never judged what people bought, but did judge them if they were a-holes. Even people on wic and foodstamps buying beer or steaks didn't bother me - sometimes you have to enjoy the little things, and who am I to deny or judge someone wanting a small enjoyment if their life is already rough enough?"
"But there was this one time that was freaking hilarious. Late on a weekend night, a really trashy couple were all over each other as they bought a 12 pack of beer and a box of condoms. Hey, at least they were being responsible. But the funniest part was when they came back not 30 minutes later and bought smokes. I still laugh thinking about that."
You never know what a cashier might be thinking, but that shouldn't stop you from buying the merchandise you want for fear of being judged.
Just make sure you treat them all with kindness. Because the positive impression you give will be something that stays with them after a long shift dealing with wacky customers.
The Mandela effect is when multiple people share the same, incorrect memory.
Its name stems from when paranormal researcher Fiona Broome falsely believed that the future president of South Africa, Nelson Mandela, died in prison in the 1980s.
A false memory she shared with a number of others.
Our memories have been known to deceive us, as we might frequently forget someone's name or one of our numerous online passwords.
But when we share a memory that turns out to be false with many others, convincing ourselves it wasn't the truth can be a very difficult ordeal indeed.
Redditor Mysterious_Boat_1701 was curious to hear people's most unsettling experiences with the Mandela Effect, leading them to ask:
"Which Mandela effect freaks you out the most and why?"
A mysterious gym
"Just had one personally."
"Went to a mall where there was supposedly a gym, asked around and nobody that worked at the mall knew what I was talking about."
"Looked around and couldn't find it."
"Come back a few months later and it’s right there in front of my face, you'd have to be strung out to not notice it."
"idk how or when it just appeared but it freaked me out."- prex320278
A "fruit"ful logo.
"That the fruit of the loom logo never had a cornucopia."
"What’s crazy about that one is that someone emailed the creator of the logo about it and he said even he remembers it having one."- mrcock2·
Less well intentioned than they thought.
"I Mandela effected my whole family once."
"Years ago there was a football player on a rival team that always did a dumb celebration after he got a sack and my family and I always hated it."
"One night after he did it my family started trashing the celebration and I said as a joke 'we are all going to feel terrible when we find out he is doing that celebration as a request from a make-a-wish kid'."
"Fast forward to years later and our team is playing that team again."
"The player got a sack and did the celebration."
"I rolled my eyes and said 'I hate that celebration so much' my mom instantly turned and said 'don't say that, he is doing it for a sick kid'."
"'I actually like it."
"So I was like 'what?'"
"'No there is no sick kid', my whole family then proceeded to argue with me'."
"They all vividly remembered reading articles about it, seeing special report segments before games about it, and other information."
"Some of them even thought they knew the disease the kid had and even extra details about why the kid chose that specific celebration."
"They all had these shared memories that they were sure were true."
"I was floored by all this and insisted none of that was true."
"So we looked it up.'
'No kid like that ever existed.'
"They still have trouble wrapping their heads around this one."
"Turned out human memory is not near as reliable as we think"
"It was American Football and the player was Jared Allen of the Minnesota Vikings and his cattle roping sack celebration."
"This was maybe 10 years ago."- AUSpartan37College Football Win GIF by Michigan State FootballGiphy
His eyesight was better than we thought.
"Mr. Monopoly's monocle."- Additional_Day9903
It's not easy being green.
"I have a personal one that to this day a decade later still destroys my mind."
"I had an old(ish) 2001 dodge neon."
"With BLACK SEATS.'
"I drove this car for years and years, like 80,000 miles.'
'All through college."
"I took work breaks in my car, commuted hours every day total, to college and then the opposite direction to work and back."
"I even lived out of this thing on several occasions.'
'The day I go and trade it in, I'm pulling misc things out of the car at the dealer."
'And the seats are GREEN."
"Not even a little."
'Like very unmistakably GREEN."
"In my black Neon, with black interior, that ALWAYS HAD BLACK SEATS."
"My girlfriend then, wife now, goes oh they've always been green."
"EXCEPT THEY F*CKING WEREN'T DON'T LIE TO ME."
"This is still upsetting to this day..... life is a lie and nothing is real."- ZakuLegionWinona Ryder Omg GIFGiphy
An urban legend was born.
"Not a global one, just a family thing."
"Back in 2002 my grandma had her 60th birthday, my father took us home at 10.00pm, ready for bed."
"We, me and brother, were 12 and 14 at this time."
'All went well."
"Over the years, a story was made up that we went missing after visiting the local playground after dinner at said grandma's birthday party."
"Some neighbors help to search us, the whole train of 'missing children in a smal village'-thing."
"Fun fact: we never went missing."
"Dad brought us home, put on 'Toy Story' on tv and left."
"My brother and I heard first about this in 2015.'
"From different people on different occasions."
"'Ah your one of the missing boys'."
"I first thought they were mocking me for a different event.'
"I got lost, but it was 2013, alcohol inflicted, different story."
"But then they ALL tell us the same story about us going missing."
'And the stories are damn close to 'true' in every story my mum is driving around the same neighbors to different locations to search, old wine yard, old mill etc."
"Sometimes I think I got lost on the most brutal way."
"I was lost and changed this plane of existence with another one."
"It sometimes made me think about my whole life."- tjorben123missing kenny mccormick GIF by South Park Giphy
Memories are a fascinating thing.
They can be changed or altered with even the tiniest suggestion.
And making the truth seem less believable than lies.
One last time. One last meal.
How do you chose a last meal?
Let's hope we never have to find out.
People on death row get that option.
Do they deserve it?
Whose to say?
But they have it.
A steak. A pizza... Burger King.
The food world is their oyster.
Oyster. Also an option.
The menu is endless...
Redditor No-Caterpillar4212 wanted to know what our menu choices would be if we faced the end. They asked:
"You're on a death row, you have one hour left, they ask for your final meal - what is it?"
I'd want 2 hours in a Golden Coral with a bar. Covers it all.
Masailor moon cooking GIFGiphy
"Everything my mom has ever made."
"I want a nice filet mignon, medium rare, a baked potato with everything on it, and a nice Cabernet from a good year - I'm thinking 2135."
"'Sorry, we couldn't get the Cabernet from 2135. So instead of what could have been a great wine request from a more plausible period of time, you get this crappy stuff we sourced from Wal-Mart. Enjoy your meal, I hope that maintaining your sense of humor was worth it."'
"Something badly cooked so I will be sick and want to die sooner and have diarrhea so bad it will be a last revenge!"
"Taco bell it is!"
"If Taco Bell makes you poop a lot, it's a sign that you probably need more fiber in your diet."
The Yuck Factor
"A huge bowl of baked beans, a bowl of shredded wheat, a six egg omelette, and a gallon of apple cider. I'm gonna make it awful for everyone."
"Save yourself the hassle of eating all that, just ask for one pack of sugar free Haribo gummy bears. Should make for an interesting time for the folks watching you die."
"You void your bowels when you die too so that should be lovely."
PerfectFried Chicken Scandal GIF by ABC NetworkGiphy
"Fried chicken with some Fanta."
Fried chicken is on the top of everyone's list!
DetailsInterested GIF by Nick CannonGiphy
"150mg of MDMA. I’m dying happy."
"This should absolutely be allowed. If our leaders insist on the practice of capital punishment then the condemned should be able to ingest any substance they damn please."
"McFlurry. Those machine are always broken. I just bought myself some time."
"Is this like an American thing? I worked at a McDonald's in Denmark once and our machine was never once broken when i was there."
"I saw a video about this once. I'm a little fuzzy on the details but I think it has something to do with the contract that was signed in America. Only one company is allowed to do maintenance on the machines and they basically lock out if it's cleaned incorrectly. It's a crap system."
"Cabbage!! Add some cabbage. I don’t know if an hour if enough to take effect but there was an old coworker on a cabbage diet. Omg she smelled, like it was coming out of her pores. She knew she smelled and kept apologizing and reminding us of the diet."
The OG Always
"Olive Garden. Unlimited soup and breadsticks."
"I saw a sketch once, can't remember who it 2qs from. But a an inmate ordered the all you can eat buffet and had been eating for like 8 years. He's constantly on the toilet and takes micro-naps between bites."
"Unlimited for 1 hour. Cool."
How GoldenGolden Girls Dorothy GIF by HULUGiphy
"If my grandma is still alive her potato soup and cheesecake. Hopefully I'd be able to cook said meal with her one last time."
Let's hope none of us has to make this decision.