Thought Catalog

35 Stories People From The Internet Have Experienced While Traveling Abroad That You Won’t Be Envious Of

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I love to travel. Traveling is one of the best things that we as humans can experience. From new cultures and meeting new people, it’s a fantastic way to realize that life isn’t experienced in one place. But of course, as with life, nothing comes without a bit of danger and bad people. Found on r/AskReddit

1. maussie

I stayed at the apartment of a friend of mine in Dalian, China in 2006. We walked out of his apartment one day and there were a bunch of camouflaged SUVs driving slowly down the street, with lots of men standing around in what appeared to be military uniforms. I asked my friend if it was the military, and he told me no, it was a wedding.

The bride spotted my brother and me, 2 white guys, and invited us to come and take pictures with her and her new husband. We even took some with her without her husband. But after the pictures they basically just said “OK see ya” and we just continued on our way. Those were some awkward pictures. That was the most involved I’ve ever been in a wedding, which includes many family members.

2. TopScruffy

I was at Señor Frogs in Cancun and they called me onstage to do a dance/drink contest thing that I ended up winning.

Everyone was cheering for us then they started chanting something about a slide. I realized I was standing in front of a tubular playground looking slide, and since even the MC was cheering me to go down I was like fuck it! So I jumped in, thinking I would end up at the bottom of the stage or down in a room below, but I came out in the fucking harbor. I couldn’t touch the bottom and I couldn’t see it was so dark.

I stayed there treading water for a bit thinking the girl was coming down too. Once I realized she wasn’t (and thought about Jaws) I just swam back towards the building and climbed up some rocks to get out.

Shit was crazy. Then I had to pay again to get back in.

image - jthetzel
“I’m ready to PARTAAAAAaaaayyyyy….”
image – jthetzel

3. aalamb

Passing through the border in to Canada to go camping. The Canadian border agents asked us if we had any firearms, large knives, or mace. We had a can of bear spray, and surrendered it to them. One border agent popped open the case that it was in, noted that the can had a picture of a bear on it, and handed it back to us explaining that the picture of a bear made it “Not mace”.

His partner thought about it for a moment, then nodded in agreement. They waved us through and warmly told us to enjoy their country.

Canada is not a frightening country

"I JUST WANTED TO GIVE YOU A HUG." image - cultofmac
“I JUST WANTED TO GIVE YOU A HUG.”
image – cultofmac

4. schrobotindisguise

I fired some guns in Cambodia (at paper targets), and the army guys running the place asked me if i wanted to fire and rpg at a cow. I declined.

5. BigTuck

I went to Oklahoma once. It was terrible.

image - thecollegerag
“Sorry not sorry.”
image – thecollegerag

6. takatori

Kidnapped in western China and forced to jump out of a moving car to escape, then convince a truck driver to let me hitch a ride back to the city.

7. OwlSinger189

Walking through Pakse, Laos my friends and I were suddenly joined by a group of older men. We had an entire conversation using only the word “beer” because we were all drinking the same kind. We rounded the corner and found ourselves in the middle of some kind of celebration, right in the intersection! I was dancing with strangers of all ages and kept yelling “BEER!” with different inflections. I have no idea what the celebration was about but we still had a good time.

8. RedDorf

“Don’t go off the path.” – said by my stonefaced Cambodian motorcycle guide as we walked through the jungle to get our bike tire fixed.

The least frightening thing I could think of was landmines.

9. [deleted]

Traveling Spain in 2008. One night I was walking the streets of Barcelona looking for something exciting to do. I found a random restaurant that was still open (2 am) and I proceeded to eat a hamburger and drink three beers. As I left the restaurant I noticed 5 teenaged kids were casually following me while I backtracked to my hotel. I kept walking and one of the kids ran up behind me and tried taking my wallet but I freaked out on him enough that he ran like the wind. So after that I ran back to my hotel and locked my fucking door, adrenaline pumping.

I blacked out… I woke up 14 hours later. I thought I was going to die. I couldn’t move to puke. I was drugged, it was the only explanation. I spent 36 hours in my bed, not knowing what was real or a dream. After that I packed up and went to Amsterdam. Didn’t walk the streets, alone, at 2 am again

10. Legitimate_Scientist

There were about 15 of us visiting Victoria Falls for the day. We were enjoying our lunch by the precipice when we got violently attacked by several baboons. The fuckers were big, quick, and scary, and habitualised enough to not be afraid of humans. Three people got their lunch stolen (they also took someone’s coat), and I ended up having a weird Mexican Standoff with one of them while everyone else was trying to get their stuff together.

"KISS. MY. ASS" image - Derek Keats
“KISS. MY. ASS”
image – Derek Keats

11. LeChatelier

I went to Mexico (my family is American, but my grandma retired in Mexico) to scatter my late grandmother’s ashes in the ocean, as per her request. My cousins and I were supposed to go to a local fishing village where a man was supposed to take us out on a boat to the spot to spread the ashes. We show up, and the family friend that set up the deal is with us, so he heads off to find the boat guy. We sit around awkwardly for a bit waiting, all the while I’m holding a box of my grandma’s ashes.

The family friend comes back, tells us to sit down at the back of this restaurant. Now, I should point out that I speak more Spanish than either of my cousins, but that still basically amounts to “donde esta el bano?” and “uno mas cerveza, por favor.”

So we’re sitting there, and the waitstaff assumes we’re waiting to be served, so they bring out chips and salsa and appetizers, even though I’m trying to say we don’t want anything. Meanwhile, the family friend is nowhere to be found. 20 mins later he shows up. His news (and I quote): “They killed him!” By “they” he means the cartel, and by “him” he meant the fisherman who was supposed to take us out on the boat.

Apparently the guy was an American, but moved to Mexico and got in with the smuggling trade. Ended up owing the wrong people money, and his body was found that morning with more than a couple 9mm holes in it.

Long(er) story short, we found another fisherman from the village just getting back with his catch willing to take us out to scatter the ashes.

12. e-jazzer

Drunk guy in NYC decides it’s a good idea to kidnap my little brother of 7. Two minutes of panic, my other brother and I go look for him, find drunk dude face down on the ground around the corner, little brother scared shitless, quickly take him with us and run like hell to find our parents.

Most terrifying moment of my life, I was 15 at the time.

13. ahymen

Ghana – Kumasi – Kumasi Market – I think it may be the second largest outdoor market in West Africa.

My friend Andrew and I were walking around the absolute clusterfuck that is the market getting lost in alleyways. At any point in this excursion someone could have clubbed us and dragged us into one of the little nooks never to be heard from again. We somehow made it to the center of the market which had a massive bottleneck in it. We were stuck next to what we realized was the outdoor meatmarket which was raised about head level.

Now Ghana is an amazing country but it is divided into two parts religiously. Christians in the south and Muslims in the North. Though I can’t explain why, the entirety of the meatmarket was run by beard clad menacing looking Muslims wielding heavy axes and knives inches from our head. Being the only white boys stuck in this bottleneck one of the men with a large knife started chanting “Long Live Osama Bin Laden!!!” while inches from our heads.

Everyone working with knives on the elevated platform started chanting the same thing while pointing at us. The instigator was also wearing a white shirt with the Two Towers smoldering adorned furthermore by Bin Laden as the conquering hero. We squeezed and squeezed and walked out of the market in absolute silence. Smoked a couple of cigarettes back to back after we got back to our place. Wow.

You can really get lost in there. image - shawnzam
You can really get lost in there.
image – shawnzam

14. george-bob

i was in china, and in a minivan being driven around near the laos and burmese border. we got waved down by the military (holding large, assault rifles). we were told to stand, facing the van with our hands behind our heads, once they finished the search they asked for our passports, when they saw we were australian they laughed and hopped around like kangaroos and then one of them got a picture with us. never in my life has something gone from being terrifying to being hilarious so fast.

15. rhairbag

I finished my late lunch and returned to my Lonely Planet “Old Town Walking Tour.” As I turned up Venezuela street, the heavenly Basilica del Voto Nacional came into view. Unlike its similar Spanish counterparts, the towering Gothic marvel is adorned with iguanas, armadillos, and tortoises in the place of gargoyles and saints. I stood there, thinking about how awesome it will be to get some sweeping HDR panoramas from the soaring tower of the old church. It was around this moment that someone from the roof of a charming colonial building dumped a bucket of shit on my head.

It startled me immensely. I ducked into a doorway and assessed the damage. My Nikon d700 was covered in what appeared to be diarrhea. My hair was damp with the same disgusting brown liquid. My backpack was mostly spared with just a light sprinkling here and there. If you have never had a bucket of fecal matter dumped on you from above, then congratulations, your life is less demeaning than mine.

It is a functional part of the robbery. Appeal to the senses, get the mark to focus on something close, make them nearsighted, shock them away from their natural balance, and then take what they have. Governments utilize this approach to push through agendas during times of crisis when the populace sees in only the short term. Crooks behave similarly. Like focusing a camera on something near, the background fades to a blurry bokeh, and you can only see the crap on the hand you just ran through your hair. This is when the muggers come for you.

About 10 seconds into my shitty assessment, two Ecuadorian men rushed me. One went for my backpack and the other went for my camera. Preparation and travel IQ go out the window if someone wants what you have bad enough. They roughed me around a bit as I shouted something pathetic along the lines of “Nooooo…not my camera.” Luckily, I held on to my backpack tight. They only made off with my prized camera rig. Each man took off in separate directions.

16. monstar449

Lived in Japan for six months on the southernmost island of Kyushu. Kyushu is not what you typically think of when you imagine Japan, it is full of nature with many trails, parks, and mountains. So there was a very tall mountain that overlooked the town I lived in (town was at sea level, mountain was about 600m high).

Two of my mates and I decided it would be fun to climb the mountain and spend the night. Well around 3am we thought it would be awesome to light a giant fire on top of the mountain. We were all very experienced campers (two eagle scouts in a group of three) so we built a lovely fire pit and proceeded to burn dead pine trees til we had about a 14′ fire burning.

Now we were unconcerned and frankly thrilled with our creation, but to the townspeople below us it must have looked like the fucking Beacon of Gondor had just been lit. So about 30 min later we see a firetruck agonizingly crawling up the tiny mountain trail that leads to the top. We all realize what massive idiots we’ve been, douse the fire and start running down the back of the mountain through the forest. We reach the bottom only to see a fire truck waiting there, with one man standing next to it.

At this point I am convinced I am about to go to Japanese prison for arson. Our plan was to pretend like we knew no Japanese (we are all fluent) and just walk by. I said “good morning” to the man by the truck (in English) and he responded in perfect oxford English “good morning how are you?” He smiled at us and watched us walk away. It was 5am and we were covered in dirt and soot. No idea why they let it slide.

17. The_Painted_Man

I chased a gypsy whilst naked in a holiday park near Venice.

Fucker crept into our room while we slept, started taking stuff, i woke up just as he grabbed my mobile phone. Half asleep (and still a little drunk), realised what was happening and chased him around the park. Never caught him. Hot weather, I sleep naked. Didn’t cross my mind to put on clothes. Lucky it was still fairly early in the morning, so only half the other tourists saw my drunken junk flopping past. Was teased relentlessly about my shenanigans for the rest of the coach trip.

Never again.

"Come to Venice, where naked Gypsies will come into your room when you're sleeping." image - Arian Zwegers
“Come to Venice, where naked Gypsies will come into your room when you’re sleeping.”
image – Arian Zwegers

18. karatechopgeo

In Istanbul, I went for a walk to see the sights and got a bit lost. I ended up by the sea in what I can only guess is not part of the usual touristy area…I was being approached by kids constantly asking to shine my shoes with one of those boot polishing kits, my shoes at the time were white trainers. So I keep saying no, walking on along this path with purpose and it seems to be working. To my left is a road about 20 foot away, to right is just a large drop onto a load of rocks and then the sea crashing up against this wall. I get this one persistent little shit who would set up as I walked pass, shout, then pack up, run about 30 steps ahead and set up again. Cute right? Well it stopped being cute pretty quick. After about five minutes of this I light up and notice the kid has run a lot further ahead, over to a row of cars. He’s talking to the one in the middle and two guys get out and start walking to me. When they’re about halfway, more guys empty out of the other cars and start milling around the general area. I notice a lot of the locals suddenly clear out completely, subtly, but quickly. Men who were on benches walk over the road into shops, people walking down the road go past quickly. It goes from being fairly empty to ghost town in less than five seconds. I try to change my course, but I’m now surrounded at around 30 foot all the way round by these fairly beefy guys in sunglasses, and a drop onto rocks and the sea behind me, a white kid in shorts and long hair, some stupid ska band shirt and an old film camera around my neck. The kid comes over and puts his little stool down and the main guy walks over. No joke, he has scars on his face half an inch to an inch deep.

“Hey man, give the kid a chance yeah?”

All the other men are now staring at us in the middle of the circle, not even trying to hide it. I size it up and decide I’ll try. I ask for no polish, but the kid grabs my foot and whacks it on the block, slaps on some polish and starts going for it. The guy looks at me like I’m his bitch. When I change feet he gestures something to the guys.

“Ay you smoke? Got one for me?”

I reluctantly get out my deck and pull him one out and light it for him. He nods to the guy next to him who hasn’t said a word. I get it and pull him one out. The kid finishes up and looks at me.

“That’ll be 50 lira”

I get out my wallet, luckily I have a load of old receipts in there which I manage to hide all the notes behind.

“I don’t have 50 lira…Look, I have about seven or eight.”

I show the head guy, who grabs the edge of my wallet and peers in. He looks at me angrily and nods and says something in Turkish. The kid then starts giving him lip, which makes him laugh. He lets go and tilts his head, so I pull out the coins and pass them to the kid. He throws the smoke down, only about a quarter done.

“Got another?”

I try to look at him like “WTF Man”, but I was 18 and shitting myself. All I could think of was how easily he could push me off the edge onto the rocks and clear off. There was nobody around and I doubt any of his guys would say anything. I pull one out and hand it to him.

“The kid too.”

So, this was it. My lowest moment. I looked at the kid.

“He’s like eight.”

“The kid too.”

I now notice the big guy behind him, still silent, has knuckle dusters on. I catch sight of one of the other guys in the circle, the circle which has shrunk in a fair bit, holding something that looked like an old fashioned cosh. I sigh and pull out a smoke and give it to the kid. I light up and the guy looks at me. The circle shrinks and the kid runs off. He points up a road.

“That’ll get you back to Blue Mosque. Don’t come here again.”

And that was it. No smokes, ruined shoes, ruined day.

19. someonefarted

This isn’t exactly frightening but rather odd. I was in Korea eating some delicious bulgogi. I guess Momma (owner of the restaurant) did not like the fact that I did not eat all of my veggies so she grabs my chopsticks out of my hand and begins to feed me. She then started feeding my friend who was sitting across from me with the same chopsticks. Momma told me that I should always eat my vegetables, gave me a pat on the head, and walked away.

20. hillkiwi

A drunk guy in Australia took me for a ride on his dirt bike on a pitch black night, was able to able chase down bunnies, pin them under the front tire, then literally rip their heads off with his bare hands, then made me carry their headless bodies while be drove us back to his shop to feed them to the dogs.

21. [deleted]

Was on a trip with some friends. Another friend of ours had convinced us(I don’t know how) that the Congo was a great place because it was so untouched by civilization. (We’re huge nature-goers).

I was skeptical but finally caved into peer-pressure.

So about 2 days after we had arrived(that a WHOLE other story) we’re taking a jeep through a well know ‘danger zone’ although our guide assured us that since we were white, we wouldn’t be in any danger(especially considering that we’re American).

So we’re driving and suddenly some guy pops up from beside some brush and waves his arms. The driver stops and starts talking to the man. Then, 4 more men appears with rifles all around us.

Our guide calmly asks us for a ‘donation’ to ‘secure travel’. So scared out of our minds we reach into our pockets, pull out the loose change we have and hand it over. The first man sees to accept our ‘donation’ and lets us pass.

I still have nightmares thinking what would have happened had we been short…sigh

22. Mr0range

Was sitting on the boardwalk in Barcelona at like eleven or so at night. My two friends had gone back to the hostel so it was just me sitting there eating the last bits of peanut butter jar and stale bread. It was the end of our trip and I was fucking broke. Anyways, it was a beautiful night, perfect temperature, waves caressing the shore, and people just enjoying live on the beach. So, obviously something shitty had to happen. Then a guy rode up on a bike and spoke what I thought was Catalan to me. I put my hands up and just say, “no, no.” He continued to talk to me and I got so tired of repeating, “no, no!” to him so I just get up and leave.

So while this guy is still blabbering away I reached for my bag that was on my side. My hand touches wood. What the fuck. Everything I had was in there, wallet, debit card, camera with about a thousand pictures, and my ipod of over three years. Strangely enough, the first thing I think about is that iPod. I turn around and see some overweight Spaniard with my bag…riding away on a bike. Almost immediately, I call upon my middle school track powers! No way was this fatass motherfucker getting away with my shit!!

I don’t think Usian Bolt could have caught me in the stretch it took for me to catch that fatass Spaniard. I throw my arms around his neck, “GIVE ME MY SHIT BACK MOTHERFUCKER!” (in perfect Catalan) and try to throw him off the bike. He lets go of my bag and I grab for it, letting go off his thick neck.

There we stood, facing off, his little friend coming up alongside him. It was stand off. “FUCK YOU! FUCK YOU! FUCK YOU!” That is all I remember saying. I’m sure they yelled various Catalan/Spanish epitaphs but those mofo’s never made one step toward me. And then I turned around and went to bed. Fuck yeah.

23. yourtehdiction

A man in Egypt attempted to buy my mother for five camels. If my Dad wasn’t there, I’d have taken it.

24. ericblair84

In the summer of 2004, I was taking a train from the city of Irkutsk in Siberia south through Ulaan Bator to Beijing. My party of about 35 people had reserved seats, which were empty when the train left Moscow headed to pick us up in Irkutsk. People fanned out to stay in the empty compartments for the first few days of the trip. When we boarded in Irkutsk, there were two young Mongolians in my compartment. They cleared out quickly when we got there.

Later that night there was a knock on our door, and the men on the other side said they were from the Mongolian customs service. When we opened up, they turned out to be the two young men who had been riding in our compartment. While the one men tried to chat up my roommates with his broken English, the other man climbed up into the overhead storage compartment, pulled off the back panel separating the compartment from the adjacent ventilation duct, and proceeded to pull a series of cardboard packages out of the air duct. Then he pulled off the two seat cushions lining the walls of the compartment, revealing boxes of prescription medication taped to the back side of each cushion.

The two men left as soon as they had all of their boxes. Carrying their contraband, some of which was obvious to the naked eye, they walked right past a real customs agent and off the train.

That is, to this day, the most exciting thing that has happened to me.

If you can hide boxes of pills under seat cushions on a train, just imagine what else they can hide. image - Jim Linwood
If you can hide boxes of pills under seat cushions on a train, just imagine what else they can hide.
image – Jim Linwood

25. ultragnomecunt

Spent 18 hours on the roof of a bus,sitting on my shoes because the roof was metal rods to tie luggage (still got huge bruises), going through the (lower) Himalayas trying to get to Kathmandu because the regular road was blocked off.

Got burned by the sun in the morning, soaked and frozen by the rain in the afternoon while holding in one arm my sleeping wife, in the other hand the rail I was sitting on, pushing with my foot when the bus turned one way, holding on for dear life when he turned the other way.

All this while looking down at a 500m cliff, the edge a few cm’s from the bus tires, while the guy was zooming past incoming trucks in the most narrow gravel roads, while hallucinating from lack of sleep that giants were coming out of the forest (which were actually women carrying wood), while a nepali guy was throat singing and smoking hash.

Good times.

26. northsider1983

I got chased out of a “villa” on the outskirts of Rosario, Argentina by a couple guys on a motorcycle brandishing automatic rifles.

Also, a run-in with local police in Russia isn’t the most pleasant thing either. :-/

Sorry if my wife read this, I know you don’t want to know this stuff!

27. KaiserMessa

I got groped in the Sistine Chapel by a German girl.

I was seventeen and on a school trip to Europe. We’re in the Sistine Chapel and I’m gawking up at the ceiling when I feel a hand squeeze my ass. I turn around and the hand switches to my crotch. There was a German girl there smirking at me. I was shocked and looking at her like a goldfish.

Then she releases my dick and scampers off to her giggling friends. In a HOLY place too.

It’s been scientifically proven that German girls go apeshit whenever in the Sistine Chapel.
image – blogefl

28. goodcigar

I visited North Korea in the fall of 2010. We went to the demilitarized zone (a highly guarded area where the north meets the south). While we were walking passing all the soldiers guarding the zone, I took a photo of one of the soldiers standing at attention. This apparently wasn’t allowed and I immediately found myself in a situation where multiple guns were trained on me. The tour guide defused the situation and asked me to delete the photo and everybody went on their way.

Oh and they spent 20 mins at airport security wondering what my PSP was.

29. jonasperrin

I was in an Israeli flea market with some friends, and one of my friends thought it would be cool to steal a little ring from one of them, so he grabs it, walks away and i’m left there looking at all the random junk. Out of nowhere the owner of the shop comes up to me yelling in hebrew saying i stole it. In the very little hebrew i know, i tell him it wasn’t me and that i don’t know what happened to it. He lifts up my shirt and tries to find it, i back up and he grabs me by my belt. At this point, there is quite a ruckus and some other shop owners come and this one guy is telling me in english to just give it back and it will be fine. I keep telling them i didn’t have it and they keep yelling at me. Eventually the guard to our tour group comes over and saves my ass by telling the it wasn’t me and that i didn’t know what happened to the ring. The rest of the day i was super shaken up and pissed off.

30. LtAwesome91

Keep in mind, I was scrawny back when this took place.

So, I was in Cuba with my family so I’m pretty tanned and basically looked like a kid that lived there. Well, someone in airport security saw me and thought that it was out of place/I was getting smuggled out the country, so all of a sudden about 3 security officers and a few military (with guns drawn) come and surround me and push my mom away. One of the security guards is questioning me “Is this your mom? Where are you from? Do you know her? Do you live here?” et cetera. I wasn’t allowed talking or looking at my mom while all this happened and I was pretty much crying. It’s not that bad, but it’s one of the worst.

Edit: this was at Frank Pais Airport in Holguin, which doubles as a military airport.

31. notmyrealidentity

Getting caught smuggling cocaine out of Turkey.

I was returning home from a one-week-vacation in Turkey with my parents. My father had a bag that could have been oversized cabin baggage, but was meant to be checked. This bag contained a knife. In that turkish airport, they screen baggage when it enters the airport, and then re-screen cabin baggage. They found a pocket knife in my fathers bag, and made a fuss as they thought it was cabin baggage. I explained to them that it was not, and they calmed down a bit and decided to just give the bag one of these swab tests. They swabbed it, put the swab through the machine, and it showed a result with one bright red entry.

I inched closer, just to read COCAINE.

At that moment, the only thought was “Shit, what is this going to be, an extortion? Will they let us contact the embassy before throwing us into a cell with 30 criminals?”. To make matters worse, my mother (who could not see the display) had the wise idea to make stupid jokes in broken english about “what did you find, some marihuana or what?”. They asked us if we are smuggling cocaine. We said no, as we actually weren’t. They said OK and let us go. I guess they were used to false positives, but it surely scared the hell out of me. I knew that turkish law is really strict about drugs and that turkish prisons are definitely a place you do not want to be in.

We still do not know what triggered the false positive. We had bought some scrap leather from a shady seller to make a finger protector for archery out of it, so maybe there was some residue on that. It was not one of those “someone smuggles drugs in unsuspecting tourist’s baggage” things either, as our baggage was never left unattended, did not get stolen after arrival, and did not contain any cocaine when we unpacked it.

32. Zoup

Got shot at, saw a few IEDs met some cool people wearing turbans some were friendly others not so much, not all that bad but then I saw this and I was ready to go home.

33. sehgalanuj

While on an internship in Fiji me and my buddy went to get our driver’s licenses changed in to local ones. The supposedly 15 min procedure took 3 hours, at the end of which a scary looking man from Fijian Immigration walked out with our passports, licenses and IDs. He proceeded to “arrest” us, put us in the back of his truck and take us in for a long interrogation because apparently our visas, which they issued, were not the correct ones.

Eventually, after hours of trying to make him understand that an internship is not a job on a ship, he finally says the visas are ok but the fees paid is not. Of course, he only wants the money in cash and this tips us off to his wish of being “tipped”. But, he doesn’t want to let us go out of the office and we obviously don’t have money. Strangely enough, we managed to convince him to give us our passports to go to the bank and get the money. Since he didn’t have our addresses and stuff, we obviously never went back. This was somewhat nerve-wracking.

Of course, this wasn’t the end of our (mis)adventures in Fiji. Then a lovely conman made friends with my buddy and pretended to be a Justice of Peace there. He managed to get a bunch of money out of his pocket by convincing him that he was helping him set up a business in Fiji and getting him Australian citizenship. The weirdest part was when we visited his not larger than 4 sq.m. (43 sq. feet) office where he introduced us to one of his customers who had broken her leg and he magically fixed it by using duct tape! Of course, my friend only believed that he was a con man when this guy claiming to be a millionaire philanthropist asked him to buy a cake for a party at his house (not better than a shack) and didn’t even offer to pay him for it.

If you think that’s the end, ohh no. Another week or so in and the locals start telling us that the political scenario is looking like there might be a military coup in Fiji. Knowing of such events in the past, living opposite their parliament and being Indians (the ethnicity targeted in these coups), we got pretty darn worried. Calling our University for help was not really useful since their sources said that nothing was going to happen. But, when asked if something were to happen, their funny enough response was that we’d be flown out by helicopter by the US Embassy (strange considering that we are both, even today, Indian citizens). Our calls to the Indian Embassy and the US Embassy both told us that a military coup was highly likely.

We changed our tickets, got visas for Australia (one hell of a hassle as they wanted us to go back to India for these visas, which we could only do by going through Australia in the first place) and decided to leave. Now, within this time our dear Justice of Peace was really pissed off at my friend for suddenly ignoring him so he starts sending him legal notices claiming that my friend owes him money and will sue him and stuff. Our little bump with immigration also worries us that it might cause trouble when trying to leave. Fortunately, we left, without trouble. Unfortunately for the people of Fiji, the coup followed shortly.

All in all, quite an adventurous, weird and nerve wracking trip but super memorable. We even got to meet the Vice President of Papua New Guinea (the country was a client of our company)!

Fiji: Beautiful waters, beautiful land, wonderful scammers and great political atmosphere. image - Frontierofficial
Fiji: Beautiful waters, beautiful land, wonderful scammers and great political atmosphere.
image – Frontierofficial

34. [deleted]

While attending private school in Tianjin, China. During recess we saw a bunch of military SUV’s rip around the corner our school was located. They drive down about a quarter mile into a barren, industrial waste place where they park furiously and soldiers pour out. We can see pretty clearly because the land is flat all around us for miles. I squint and I see some civilian being roughed up and forced to knee on the ground. Then they line up, shoot him up, pack up and leave. with the body there.

35. Acidyo

Visiting siblings in a Mediterranean country, the van stops. A car in front is sideways on the road blocking us. Driver opens the door to check if it’s an accident and if anyone is hurt. We see two kids, 15-17 year old grab him from behind and point a knife at him. They yell at us to give them all cash we have and after they run into the car and drive away.

Scariest moment of my life, the other people riding with us told us that we were really lucky nothing else happened. A lot of people have gotten killed like this even if they obeyed the robbers. Some times they stab or shoot others for fun.

I haven’t been there in five years now. TC mark

image – ~suchitra~

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