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Who is your favorite travel companion and why? Share nightmarish ones as well!

Who is your favorite travel companion and why? Share nightmarish ones as well!

Mar 16th, 2007, 01:31 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 9
The worst companion ever? Hands down, my (thankfully now EX) husband. For too many years he spoiled our trips by getting completely, hopelessly drunk each and every night, no matter where we were. Of course the following morning he was always a total BEAR to deal with. Ugh!

First runner-up would have to be my college roommate, who insisted on coming to Spain with me after my junior year abroad in Valencia. She refused to even TRY to learn Spanish and never missed an opportunity to insult the locals. She left with the firm belief that "Spain is a third world country" -- then somehow managed to talk her way into a position with the Peace Corps in Micronesia. As you can imagine that did not last long!

Best companion -- my wonderful DH (current one of course, and the only one that really counts in my book!). He helps calm me down and really shows me how to stop and smell the roses (I tend to overplan if not kept in check by him!). I think we bring out the best in each other when we travel together.
britishchippy is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 02:44 PM
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,569
My favourite travelling companion is my friend, Muffy. She is very laid-back and doesn't get ruffled when things go wrong. She also doesn't care how much anything costs. "Muffy, our bar bill is $26,000.00, " I say. She replies, "Oh, just give the man my black American Express card." She has Mark Cross luggage that is held together with duct tape.

I also like to travel with my friend, Cynthia, Countess de Billy. We went to China together and she was a lot of fun. She can sit on the ground and eat food out of a box with her fingers whilst wearing ilias lalaounis jewelry. Not many people can get away with that.

I cut the nightmarish people out of my life, so I don't have any problems with boors.

marginal_margiela is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 02:47 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 154
My hands down favorite traveling companion is my sister. She likes to see historical sites, go to pubs, shop and can sit and people -watch at the beach or a cafe for hours, just like me.

My second choice would be my youngest son. He loves cities, bright lights and adventure. He wants to see anything and everything in an easy going laid back style. He never gets flustered and can figure out subways, metros, taxis,etc, in any country, any language. He also can make me laugh in stressful situations.

Unfortunately, my worst travel companion is my very dear DH! He loves to spend HOURS and HOURS reading every sign in a museum, hates to shop, gets nervous driving in foreign countries (but won't agree to allowing me to drive)and never wants to see what I want to see! I will say I always get to eat in the best restaurants with him, though.

I'm off to Ireland with my mother in June and I'm not yet sure where she's going to fit on my list!
suse is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 02:51 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,019
The best: My girlfriend of 50 years. No contest.

The worst one? Please. Let us keep this civil. Has to be my father. His way or some other highway.

You conservatives need not worry. The relationship is legal; has been for more than 48 years. It is just better to take my girlfriend. Fewer arguments.

bob_brown is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 04:00 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 5,950
I usually travel alone because I prefer it.

One bad experience with a person I get along with & who had gone to London with me before & that's my boss' wife. On the previous trip she had split costs with me.

The last time, on a last minute whim she came over on a free Biz class ticket using miles & stayed with me in the studio flat I usually rent for half my stay. She got the bed & I slept on a 2 seater love seat. She enjoyed my stocked refrigerator, had a good time & then left without paying me a penny.

She then had the nerve the following year to tell me I shouldn't go to London because it was "too expensive." That will never happen again.
Carrybean is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 04:27 PM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 250
My best traveling companion? I have been fortunate to have traveled with lots of great people--my father and stepmother, , some college friends, a friend and her niece and nephew, my own nephews. They were all great fun, good sports and able to roll with the punches. It was fun to have someone to share laughs and horrors with. I took my four nephews when they were young and we had great laughs and adventures.

That said, I have enjoyed lots of trips on my own. I have met lots of people that way as often people are more likely to talk to someone on her own than a twosome or group. I have been thankful that when things went wrong, there was no one to tell me I had messed up big time. Getting lost could be an adventure rather than a "Don't you know what you're doing!?"
If I wanted to get up early, I didn't disturb anyone. If I didn't feel like eating a full meal, I could grab an apple from my grocery bag and munch away. I could stop when I was hungry. I could be where I wanted to be when the light was best for photographing. However, there was no one with whom I could share laughs or memories afterwards.

My worst? When my niece was 16 (different family than the nephews, different houserules-actually none), I took her to Ireland. It was the trip from hell. I was fortunate that she couldn't drive a manual transmission or I would have been left in a ditch somewhere. Her attitude whenever anything was diferent from what she was used to was, "Why don't they just _________ like normal people?" Her attitude toward rules such as "keep off the grass" was that it was a stupid rule and she would do what she liked. When we arrived at a B&B, she would hop into the shower and use up all the towels. I mentioned that she could leave me just one of the four or five towels. I got wise after the second time and would jump in the bathroom first and sneak one towel away so that I would have a dry one when it came time to wash. At most sights, she would refuse to go in and just sit in the car. If I asked her what she would like to do, she said she didn't care. In Dublin she disappeared into a shop and got a tatoo.

One night when we were staying at a B&B in the suburbs of Dublin, she met a young man and ran off with him to Dublin for the evening. Came home at 3:30 a.m. plastered.

I could go on, but I think this paints the picture of the trip from Hell.
teacher33 is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 04:50 PM
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 12,023
My favorite travel companion is my sister, who has bad feet but a marvelous sense of humor and an almost child-like appreciation of the places we visit.

The rock-bottom worst was Judy, who did not drink alcohol when I first knew her, but by the time we traveled together had developed quite a thirst and very erratic behavior to go along with it.

One night in Spain she created a scene by taking a dislike to a perfectly innocent woman and first glaring at her for a long time and then going to the woman and saying that she had been staring because the woman was so attractive.

But the most memorable incident took place at a so-called "bullfighting school," where unwise customers drank waaay too much wine out of a bottle with a spout--sort of like a bota bag--and then went into the ring to "fight" old bulls, or weak bulls, or otherwise non-confrontational bulls.

Judy decided she should fight a bull. She went into the ring, but the bull she was attempting to fight was just not very interested in her, so she began to chase it. The bull then turned around, accidentally knocking her down and splitting her lip quite badly.

The proprietors, who were quite shaken, gave her first aid. Judy then wanted to go back into the ring again. I could have throttled her! For days after that, we'd have to hunt up a doctor--with my fractured Spanish--at every town we visited.
Pegontheroad is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 05:02 PM
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,569
Peg, I fell off my chair reading your story. Thankfully, my cereal bowl full of gin was on the piano.

Judy sounds like a character out of a story by Flannery O'Connor.

A good traveling companion is hard to find.
marginal_margiela is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 06:07 PM
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 656
My favorite travelling companion is my darling husband. He is so calm and laid back on vacation, we have identical travelling styles and we laugh and play through every trip. I count my blessings every time we travel together that we have each other to share the wonder with.

My nightmare travelling companions are my two daughters in law. Either one of them alone is wonderful but when we decided to take them both on the same trip it was a nightmare. Jealousy and petty arguements abounded and actually climaxed in a screaming match between the two of them in the lobby of the Hotel Jolly in Florence. Never again will they both get to go on the same trip and if they do I will not be there.
jdraper is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 06:35 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 47,827
Oh there are so many, both good and bad...

Worst has to have been M, whom I invited to come to my house in the Dordogne in a moment of weakness...well, a moment of weakness fueled by more wine than I should have partaken of. It was April, and she showed up at the airport in this HUGE tattered mink coat and three suitcases the size of Iowa. On the plane over she drank a fifth of Scotch or so and passed out in the bathroom and had to be revived by the flight attendants.

Needless to say she wasn't in great shape for the long train ride to the Dordogne the next morning. She couldn't carry any of her bags and was in a very vocal snit about the fact that there were no porters at the train station (and no way I was hauling her bags for her, which made her even madder). She ended up throwing herself at various middle-aged Frenchmen and coercing them to get her bags on the train, then promptly headed to the bathroom where she threw up most of the way to Bordeaux.

She slept through the ride from Bordeaux to the Dordogne. When we arrived at my house she couldn't haul her bags up the stairs to the bedrooms, so they stayed in the living room for a week while she wandered up and downstairs picking up clothes and dropping off clothes. She never once took a shower or a bath in the week we were there.

She used her tattered mink coat as a blanket every night, curling up in it on the bed instead of climbing under the covers.

I could go on and on, but the culmination was the night she and a friend of mine and I went to dinner at Les Trois As in Le Bugue. We walked inside the restaurant, and after I confirmed our reservation and the hostess was leading us to our table, M turns to me as if a lightbulb has just gone off and says "Les Trois As! I get it! That's perfect!" and in front of the wait staff and the hostess and the dining patrons pulls down her jeans, sticks out and wiggles her bare ass and goes "Les Trois As! That's US!!!"

OMG, I wanted to die on the spot. Been picking my guests a lot more carefully since then.....
StCirq is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 06:48 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 4,129
My favorite travel companion is my mom. She's fun, up for anything, and will often suggest something I never thought of, like Argentina, Chile and the Chilean Fjords.

I'm also fortunate to have a wonderful group of friends who are a hoot to travel with, togther and separately.

Then, of course, traveling with me is just a dream. I plan to take myself to Europe alone one of these days.

My aunt and uncle are probably my worst travel companions. They complain about everything ad nauseum. Glad they have their own rooms when we travel, otherwise, I'd have to kill myself!

I have not yet traveled with nightmarish friends, although I almost did. We're now back to being more acquaintances than anything else. She still wants to trade airfare for lodging at 5* hotels!!!
mcnyc is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 06:48 PM
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,569
Sorry, St. Cirq, but I don't remember ever going to your house in the Dordogne. But, I would never wear jeans with a mink coat.

I am snowed in. Philly is having a blizzard. Thankfully, I have my gin and Darvocet to get me through the night.

My husband and dog are fast asleep. Thanks for the company.
marginal_margiela is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 06:58 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 47,827
Of course you wouldn't, marginal! I would never cast such aspersions.

We're having a sleet and slush fest here in DC. I just slid home and opened a bottle of Montrachet. Remind me not to issue any invitations this evening
StCirq is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 08:10 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,392
My favorite companion is my DH, followed by our daughter and son. DH is sooo easygoing and basically does any thing I want to do!
Worst? Where to begin. Pretty much anyone else who we have ever traveled with! There is the couple who have no concept of time or place. Or the couple who are terrified to let us out of their sight and are literally stepping on our heels the ENTIRE trip. I fear the worst is yet to come, though. A friend who I love dearly but would NEVER travel with for many reasons has invited herself and her spouse to join DH and I on our next trip to Europe. I was too wimpy to say no. Oy.
rbnwdln is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 08:26 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 13
My sister is my favorite travel companion. She is easy to get along with, willing to do anything, and very comfortable to be with. I have lots of friends who are great to travel with so I always have good options.
kgw is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 08:38 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 940
My husband is my favorite travel companion, and I have never traveled with anyone else, except for the kids when they were little, so no nightmares I think I enjoy travel more with him than I would without him as we have shared memories. It would be a nightmare to me to travel with anyone else. For example, I have no desire to travel with another couple.

sandypaws3 is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 09:11 PM
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 891
I guess you last couple of posters don't want to know about our Florida weather right now so I'll just move right along....

My DH is my favorite travel companion because I love him to death, but sometimes he is also my worst. The best, he's smart, has amazing directional sense and is a great driver on any side of the road, remembers everything (while I forget everything). He's more patient with others than I am (but impatient with my impatience). He's a huge foodie, so we eat well, he's patient with things I want to do that he might not be interested in..

BUT, the worst--- even tho I'm 50+ and have had multiple careers, served as director on more than one Board and have infinite responsibilities, he often treats me like an 8-year-old who can't cross the street alone when we travel. Drives me NUTS. I know he's just being protective because he loves me. The thought only helps sometimes.
Lady is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 09:58 PM
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 12,023
Gadzooks, StCirq! M sounds like she has a loose screw somewhere.
Pegontheroad is offline  
Mar 16th, 2007, 11:02 PM
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 112
this is for Barb
have just started reading your diva report. this is the best novel I've read for a long time can't do it all in one sitting though. just loving it! as they say life is full of many experiences some good some bad!
64kerry is offline  
Mar 17th, 2007, 05:35 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 1,136
Still sick, but woke this am to see lots of fun responses.

Tell more.....
tripgirl is offline  

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