“If I hear her clear her throat one more fucking time…”
“We are sightseeing. Why do we have to sit every ten feet. WHY DO YOU ALWAYS WANT TO SIT?”
“For what purpose do you unpack every single item in your suitcase and inspect it, to then put it right back into your suitcase the same way? WHY ARE YOU DOING THAT?”
I don’t care if it’s your nicest, never-been-in-even-the-smallest-fight friend, you’re gonna hate her/him at some point in your travels. The littlest things they do will grate on your nerves extra-rusty-grater-like.
Whenever someone spends every waking moment for an extended period of time with literally anyone, they’re gonna want to throttle them at least once.
It’s basic human nature.
It is possible to minimize and, if you’re lucky enough, eliminate becoming irrationally annoyed with your travel companion(s) with these failsafe tips:
1. Don’t be an asshole, (but if it happens, be a little understanding)
This one sounds pretty simple, but not being an asshole can be pretty hard when you’re sleep-deprived, you have traveler’s diarrhea, and/or you haven’t quite adjusted to your new cultural surroundings.
The best bet here is, if someone you know is always an asshole, don’t agree to spend six days and seven nights with them on a trip where escape is impossible.
If you or someone you know isn’t known for being an asshole, but you/they have suddenly morphed into Kanye West, blame it on the travel diarrhea. It’s not you, it’s the chapped butthole.
ALWAYS BLAME IT ON THE DIARRHEA.
2. Be prepared to battle
It’s gonna happen. Prepare yourself mentally for the inevitable fact that you will annoy each other and that it will likely lead to a nasty and probably public disagreement or argument.
And then, to make up, they’ll make this face to make you laugh and wait until you notice as you are actively avoiding them while waiting for your meal at a crowded restaurant.*
When you’re expecting it that your pal’s incessant throat clearing or tendency to dominate conversations and decisions will eventually annoy you, you can be better prepared to act in a positive fashion.
However tempting, leaving your travel partner alone in the Theatre District in NYC doesn’t do wonders for a friendship. Also, you’ll feel really bad if your friend gets shanked.
3. Be more flexible
This pretty much goes along with the previous two suggestions. No one who isn’t able to adjust and be flexible is fun to travel with. Sorry. It’s fact.
If you have a hard time going with the flow, not only will you miss out on awesome travel experiences, the people traveling with you will want to send you packing.
Despite the fact that snoring and having to use the bathroom right after someone drops a Beijing Bomb is unpleasant, it’s all part of the experience when traveling and sharing a room with others. Embrace it.
4. Plan time apart
The best way to get back to semi-liking your travel friend is to not have to see their face or hear their mouth breathing for a couple of hours.
Plan some dedicated time when you can part ways for a chunk of the day. Maybe you’re into museums, but your friend is more into shopping. Perfect. You can each do what you want and get that much-needed if-i-have-to-spend-five-more-minutes-with-you-I’ll-do-murder-break.
Checked out some awesome Edinburgh back alleys. I swear I wasn’t looking for a place to dump the body.
5. Focus on what’s around you
Don’t get so in a tizzy that you forget what you planned months for and paid out the ass to see. Sure, part of why you planned the trip was to spend time with your friend, but let’s be real, an even bigger reason was to see the Eiffel Tower/Grand Canyon/Great Wall/Loch Ness.
Focus on the sights, smells, and new sensations all around you. Immerse yourself in your experience and ignore the reality that your travel companion feels the need to read to you every sign, banner, billboard, shop window, and names of businesses as you pass by.
This one was amusing, though.
6. Just get drunk
If all else fails, drink.
*I think it took a lot longer for me to eventually see his ridiculous face than he had anticipated. The entirety of the restaurant and 20 people walking by gawked and pointed before I turned to look and subsequently threw a breadstick at his stupid face.
Also, I’ve been given express permission to post his image. I’m just not sure he remembers me taking this one…