“Where are you from?”
“How long have you been travelling?”
“Where have you been?”
“How long are you here for?”
These questions are standard travellever small talk, but admittedly they do get a bit boring. In fact once I met someone and asked how long they’d been in Australia for, only for them to respond ‘No I don’t want to answer these questions, they are boring.’ So I asked which five celebrities living or dead they’d invite to dinner instead. Thinking it would either start a conversation or warrant being told to fuck off.
Anyway, sometimes when you’re travelling you find yourself being asked some rather odd questions, I thought I’d share some of the funniest I’ve been asked here..
“How many skyscrapers are there in London?” – asked by an Australian in Budapest.
This question was funny to me as we were walking through the centre of Budapest, and talking about old architecture. The guy, who was from Melbourne, pointed to one of the Georgian style shop fronts and said “See these old buildings? You don’t get these in Melbourne.” Which led him to ask how many skyscrapers there were in London, and I found myself racking my brains to come up with an estimate. In the end I replied ‘I only know the ones with names, the Shard, the Gherkin and the Walkie talkie.’ Exposing my lack of knowledge about the capital of England.
“Don’t the English drink warm beer?” – asked by two Tasmanians in Melbourne.
“England, where the weather is cold and the people are colder.” A joke I couldn’t help but laugh at when I went to a comedy night in Melbourne. I wasn’t surprised by this view of English people, especially when compared to the laid back Australians.
Warm beer, my English friends, is a big part of the Australian perception of us. I got asked this question when I befriended two Tassies on my first night in St Kilda as a result of asking them if they could open my bottle of beer. I also met a German guy at the same hostel who asked if it was true that the English drank warm beer. I have no idea where this has come from and find it hilarious that warm beer is considered an English thing… I’m definitely going to try and find out where this came from!
“What does your lipstick mean?” – asked by a Dutch guy in Tasmania.
One day in Hobart I decided to wear a bright red lipstick that my friend Megan bought me, “because everyone needs a showstopper red,” she said. I wear it from time to time when I want an outfit to pop, or if I’m bored.
I went out for a walk with a guy I’d met at my hostel, and when we were sat on a rock he asked ‘what does your lipstick mean?’
‘It means I felt like wearing lipstick today,’I said.
‘I thought it meant “Don’t kiss me!”’ He said.
This was funny as I’ve never been asked what my make up means before, and well I don’t kiss and tell…
“Have you had Malteasers before?” – asked by an Australian in Brisbane.
This Christmas Santa found me in Brisbane and very kindly gave me a copy of The Dressmaker (the most bizarre book I’ve ever read!) and a box of Malteasers. On Boxing Day I opened the Malteasers to share with the family I was staying with. My friend’s Mum asked if I’d had Malteasers before, and I wanted to laugh considering they’re one of England’s most loved chocolates. They’re like crack over there!
“Are you from Liverpool?” – asked by an Australian in Winton.
During my first shift on the bar at the North Gregory, I was serving an Ozzie truck driver who’d drank around 3 Schooners by the time he asked me where I was from. When I said “I’m from England,” he said “Oh are you from Liverpool?”
Cue a very confused me, wondering how my southern accent could be mistaken for scouse.
The guy went on to explain that it’s a joke he pulls with every English person he meets.
He said “Once I ask them if they’re from Liverpool, they always tell me EXACTLY where in England they’re from.”
A pretty unique strategy if you ask me.
And there you have it, the funniest questions I’ve been asked on my travels so far. I think they reflect the weird and wonderful people I’ve met so far and I’m sure I’ll be asked many more funny questions.
What’s the funniest thing someone has asked you? Let me know in the comments below!