Conversations With Ecuador George: Traveling Made ...

Conversations With Ecuador George: Traveling Made Uneasy

We like to travel.

We do it as much as we can within reason. My partner prefers having just the two of us go off on our own, but sometimes I like traveling with friends. I think it makes it more interesting.  Or at least, I used to. Lately, traveling with friends has felt like having visitors in from out of town. Two hours is great, over the weekend is fine, but when all that togetherness stretches out to more than five days, I start coming unglued. I don’t remember it being like this before. Maybe being older and set in one’s ways makes shared travels more difficult.

Case in point: Last year we went on a trip with four other people. Two were very alpha males, one was a dish rag, and one was a wine aficionado. For the first few days one alpha guy tried to out-macho the other until one of them broke his ankle. For the rest of the trip we had to walk around at half speed, so that he could keep up with us. And his wife kept ordering a second bottle of wine and then drinking most of it herself. During the last four days, neither one of these people could stand up without assistance.

I have compiled a list of traveler “types.” Have you ever vacationed with someone who:

Has an opinion on everything, including politics, religion, and chemtrails

Is a back-seat driver

Understands no boundaries and talks about anything… Everything from sex and dirty stories to toilet practices is fair game

Belches as if in a contest

Constantly interrupts everyone all the time

Always turns the conversation around to being all about them

Has already done everything and been everywhere

Is impolite to wait staff and service people

Gets whiny and thinks you don’t like them if you want a little “alone” time

Complains about everything, and everyone, all the time


Is cheap, cheap, cheap

Everything they see is the most beautiful they have ever seen

Keeps disappearing so that you have to go look for them

Is a really slow walker

Is a really fast walker

Always waits to see if someone else will pick up the tab

Is a vegetarian

Only eats meat and says insulting things to vegetarians

Wants to run, run, run, when you want to sit and watch

Keeps suggesting a visit to a nude beach (At 60, I don’t think so…)

At the beach, their “business” is visible from where you are sitting

Complains that the back seat is too small, and that you should have rented a bigger car

When they say, “Bathroom, soon!” they mean in two minutes, not twenty minutes

Every other word out of their mouth is the F word

Needs a beer within two minutes of sitting down or gives the wait staff a hard time

Makes you listen to every joke they know, several times over

Always takes the bill splits it to the penny

Thinks it’s funny to fart in the car

Brings a couple of mixed CD’s of awful music

Thinks 5% is more than enough for a tip, and that is all they are giving

Has every possible medical ailment imaginable and talks about them ad nauseum

Is a fast-food junkie who won’t pay for fine dining

Is a heavy drinker at dinner who wants to split the bill evenly

Never adds tax and tip to the bill and then wonders why the numbers don’t add up

Won’t leave the bar when it’s time to go, and starts partying with the table next to you.

Has bladder-control problems that can make a road trip “interesting”

Can you think of more?

Pick your travel companions carefully or things can get real crazy real fast. And here’s one that gets real old real fast

Always leaves his wallet “back in the room.”


Ecuador George was born and raised in Southern California. He then spent 20 years in the Phoenix area, first going to school and then building custom homes, mostly in the downtown historic districts. He then moved back to California to be close to family, and started building mountain cabins in his new home town of Forest Falls. In 2014, he retired and moved to Cuenca, Ecuador where he is very slowly learning to speak Spanish, is writing a couple of books, and has a popular blog called And if you wish to continue the conversation, you can contact Ecuador George through his blog.