Friday, October 30, 2009

Tamiflu blues - or what I have learned traveling on a bus with 32 teenagers through Poland.

More than 2 weeks ago I got into a bus with 32 teenagers, one other teacher and a few parents travelling to Poland and Germany to revisit the grim history of the World War II. We were excited and ready to have the trip of a lifetime. And it sure was!

I had actually written a very long detailed post about the trip, but realized that it would probably not be a very interesting read. So instead I decided to sum up the things that I have learned that has nothing to do with history:
  1. After 12 hours in a bus your ass goes numb and every part of your body aches. Do not try to walk quickly off the bus, you will stumble and fall. And people will laugh.
  2. Planning to not eat chocolate during 8 days on a bus is inhuman. You might fill a whole bag with fruits, müsli, wheat germ crackers and low fat cheese.... after a while these things will just make you grumpy!
  3. NEVER fall asleep! If you do, some obnoxious teenager will take your picture with your mouth open drooling on your pillow. And yes, they will post it on Facebook.
  4. In spite of being obnoxious, teenagers are pretty awesome to be around!
  5. Do not assume that the weather in Central Europe will be more pleasing than in Scandinavia. Expect snowstorms and bring your rain-boots. Do not be too vain to wear a rain poncho.
  6. Teenager girls will wear whatever is cool and not take your advice. Don't even bother telling them to bundle up!
  7. If you wear rain-boots for a day, your feet will smell no matter how clean your socks. Don't expect the people around you to be happy when you take them off in the bus. And no, perfume will not cover it up!
  8. Do not buy 60 crystal glasses in Krakow and expect to carry them yourself through a blizzard while you have to pee. It's impossible.
  9. You don't need 60 crystal glasses!
  10. If you want to buy 60 crystal glasses anyway you have to sweet-talk the bus driver. Buying him cake works.
  11. Do NOT leave your iPhone on a restaurant table in Poland. It will disappear.
  12. Life without an iPhone is pretty miserable.
  13. There is nothing fun about bathroom breaks when you are 40 people on a bus.
  14. If you tell people inside a salt-mine that the walls and floors are made of salt, some will actually try to lick it. Go figure...
  15. When one teenager gets sick it feels like 10, when 30 teenagers get sick... Make sure you bring a nurse on your trip!
  16. Polish Homeopathic medicine will NOT cure the Swineflu, no matter what that Polish doctor says.
  17. If your head hurts, your throat is sore, your body aches and you have a fever... don't assume it's just a cold. Just face it... it's the Swineflu.
  18. Finding 160 doses of Tamiflu in Berlin is almost impossible! Bring your own.
  19. Do not carry 2 plastic bags full of Tamiflu into a hotel. They hotel staff will freak out!
  20. When everyone is sick, no one will remember your birthday.
  21. When no one remembers your birthday you feel miserable and unloved, even though you should be old enough to not care. Next time forget modesty and just tell everyone it's your birthday!
  22. When enough bad things happen, you are exhausted and feel like crap, there is nothing left to do but laugh. Laughing is a good way to combat insanity.
  23. Trying to get teenagers not to mingle with other teenagers on a ferry... Still haven't found out how to do that!
  24. If you are on a bus with 32 teenagers and experience an outbreak of the Swineflu, you will be quarantined at home for 7 days.
  25. Quarantine is good.
  26. 7 days is not enough. You'll need a month!


Les Cotrions said...

Mmmmm...your vademecum is very interesting!!!!
Wish you a nice and relaxing week end!

NordicPer said...

OK - so I am not envious of your trip to Poland anymore!!
You funny wife!

Amy said...

You are such a wonderful writer. I feel I was right there carrying those glasses, falling asleep, wishing for chocolate, and trying not to get a sore bum. Or even sick. Have a great Friday. Thanks for my little one's Birthday wishes.

Nanni said...

Haha... fikk en herlig latter her!!! JEG husket bursdagen din og sendte sms til Iphonen din, håper den polske tyven angret grovt da mine kjærlige ord strømmet inn...

Og by the way.. bursdag, jeg har gave til deg her!

Og by the way II, jeg har jobbet lenge nok med tenåringer til å vite at det du sier er saaaant!

:o) Love

Nanni said...

Når fyller NordicPer år... trillepillerundt tall, vet jeg... ;o)

Gracie said...

Oh my dear
I sure do feel for you.Teenagers...e-gad!
But you survived a sore butt,crowded spaces,drool flu,I truly am impressed.

Regina said...

Hi. Wow a lot to learned. Great post really and quite hilarious.
I will be traveling soon. I might apply some tips you posted:).

Happy weekend.

Anonymous said...

GOD helg til deg og dine..!

Chrisy said...

Oh I enjoyed reading this very much! And dear, I agree - purely in the interests of worldwide health and safety - you must quarantine yourself for at least a month!

Fruitful Vine2 said...

LOL! #1 and #14 had me laughing. Sounds like a very interesting and eventful trip. Will you do it again?

Happy SITS Saturday Sharefest!

Leann said...

Thanks for those helpful tips!!

Feel better!

Claudia said...

Oh boy - some hard-learned lessons! Sounds like you had a tough time on the bus! Hope all is well now!


CC said...

What a wonderful post..I loved it and have to say. the way you write gives me so many smiles. So thank you for the way you wrote about your are indeed a great,funny writer. Happy Pink Saturday and Happy Halloween.

someplace in thyme said...

Oh my, I don't know if I could do it. Your advice had me laughing all the way, but take heed, it's all good. I remember taking a tour thur Pottsdam and they couldn't fill in the bullet holes on the sides of the buildings fast enough. That terrible part of history has disappeared forever, I still don't know if that's a good thing or not. Do we need to remember or should we forget.....either way, it sounds like you had a great time even with all the numbness and soreness. Happy Pink Saturday, Char

Chic Mama said...

Oh dear........what an experience. Poor you. Hope you are feeling better now.

Karen, author of "My Funny Dad, Harry" said...

Sounds like quite the trip. I would sleep on the bus anyway--picture or no picture. Sad no one remembered your birthday, but then, you may be better off--who knows what kind of prank the teens may have come up with to celebrate it!

Congrats on your SITS day!

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