Friday, 8 August 2008

Olympics hating part 2: bad bus

On the news tonight, two items: first, some fragile little Incredible Hulk of an olympics kid whining about how, because he's seven feet tall and weighs 120kg, it hurts him to walk around and so he can't go to the opening parade because then he won't be able to play basketball properly afterwards.

Why don't they teach these people that whinging because you don't want to walk there because you're too weak, but you're still sulking because you really want someone else to carry you, is for little babies?

Then the next story was a man giving a press conference about how the Australian sport-players don't like it in China, and his example of how it's all just not good enough was the buses the canoeists have to take to go to where their sport is. Apparently the bus has hard seats, is not air conditioned, and takes 50 minutes. Inferior chinese bus an insult to the Australian canoe paddlers, who are entitled to the best that buses can offer.

Hearing this pathetic moaning I was instantly transported back to the ex-demilitarised zone in Vietnam, in 2001, where the minibus hauling a load of Western tourists from Hue out to Khe Sahn, the bridge across Ben Hai at the 17th parallel, the tunnels at Vinh Moc, and a whole lot of other depressingly unreconstructed bombed-back-into-stone-age historical sites, raised the ire of a red-bearded German tourist. Bouncing along a red dirt road we were, probably having just left yet another of the two-horse villages where tourists are mobbed by five year old kids trying to sell cans of Coke, or maybe on the way to the place where Hmong people lived in single-roomed bamboo houses and I saw an English girl wave a two hundred dong note above a child's head, just out of reach, and laughingly tell the kid to jump for it, when suddenly Redbeard yelled out


It wasn't the best of buses but compared to everything else we were showed that day it was a mobile palace of luxury and comfort.

1 comment:

Ampersand Duck said...

Uh, don't get me started on bad tourists. Every time I travel I dislike my fellow (I was going to say Anglos, but just as many of the offenders have been of other cultures) travellers more and more.

I think of them as 'Verucas', in the Roald Dahl sense of the word.