As we've been making our way across the globe we've had our fair share of funny stories, once-in-a-lifetime memories and just flat out bizarre moments. It's not always possible to cram all of these stories neatly into our blog entries without ending up with something that's bigger than Ben Hur. So we've decided to compile a few of these random observation themed blog entries. We hope you get a giggle and/or facepalm out of them where appropriate.
What does the "fran" stand for?
Whilst in France, I kept noticing a chain of convenience stores and express supermarkets called "Franprix". I commented to Jess that it was a clever play on words - dropping the "G" from "Grandprix" and replacing it with "F" to indicate that it was a speedy way to get your shopping done in France. Jess replied that she agreed. But then she looked at me puzzled and asked "But what does the Fran part stand for?" God give me strength…
The higher you go, the stupider they become!
After fighting through hordes of annoying tourists (yes, I'm aware of the hypocrisy of that statement) on the Effiel Tower observation deck, we finally managed to squeeze up to the fence and take in the glorious view? We found ourselves next to a group of American college students. Right on cue one of the students turned to her friend and asked "How many countries can you see from up here?" Well let's see there's France and….yep just France.
I worry about our future. No society can survive this level of stupidity.
Cleaning tips from the methadone clinic
Whilst in Stirling, Scotland we decided to take an excursion out to Doune Castle - the location for Monty Python's The Holy Grail. The excursion involved a rather lengthy bus ride through some of Scotland's rougher neighbourhoods. At one stage a group of drug affected bums boarded the bus and proceeded to talk amongst each other rather loudly. After discussing whether so and so was still in jail the conversation shifted to domestic matters. Apparently one of the druggies had a pretty nasty stain on his carpet. One of the other druggies "suggested" that he use sugar soap to get it out. When I say she "suggested", I mean she got right up in his face and yelled repeatedly that he needs to use sugar soap to remove the stain. Just in case he wasn't clear on what he should do, she carried on saying this non-stop for about 8 minutes. Message received. Thanks crazy lady!
Jess' history lessons
Every now and then we'll be walking through a city or town and Jess will find the need to give me a history lesson on a particular building, object, landmark etc. The trouble is that Jess doesn't bother to take the time to read about said object or landmark and then repeat what she has just read. Instead she just makes up her own history. Why let a little thing like facts and the objective truth get in the way of a good story? It's the vibe that counts.
Here's an example: "Gary, see this bench? This bench is actually very important. You see this was the bench where Napoleon sat and drew up the terms of surrender following the battle of Pompeii. He would come and sit on this bench in particular because it overlooks the harbour where he married his fourth wife after his third wife was beheaded".
All the text in bold in the above statement is false and Jessica just made it up on the spot. And if I'm honest, I fell for it the first few times. Lesson learnt.
England - the land of only one original idea
I don't know what it is about England but they're just not all that into original ideas and creative names for pubs and shops. Every single English town and city we visited had at least one pub called the Red Lion and another called the Kings arms. It didn't matter how small the town was, it had a Red Lion. And no, the Red Lion isn't a franchise of pubs like McDonalds is to restaurants. The Poms just can't be stuffed coming up with a new idea. Don't believe me? Just Google "red lion England" and see for yourself. According to Yahoo answers, there are 759 pubs in England called the Red Lion.
One day, I'm going to put together a book of Jess-isms. In that book I'll have a whole chapter dedicated to her analogies. The other week she described me (and my tempter) as a Wasabi pea - because apparently I immediately explode in a heated rage but then calm down quickly and go back to being rather sweet and pleasant.
Another analogy she used to describe something that excites you at first but becomes boring very quickly (and I quote verbatim) "s/he's like a grouper fish. When you catch one you're excited but then they wriggle around for a bit too long and become annoying".