When we left on our travels, we wanted to immerse ourselves in new cultures, meet interesting people and generally just have fun. We weren’t looking to “find ourselves” or change as people…and we haven’t.
What we have found is that a huge portion of the people we’ve met all fall into distinct categories. We’ve met some lovely people, but the world is full of so many ridiculous and intriguing characters. Here are some of the people we’ve come across the most:
The over 60 long timer:
Lived in Asia for 10+ years, this guy’s got an Asian wife and knows everything about everything. You’ll never get a word in edgeways in a conversation and if you do it’ll be turned back around to talk about him. He won’t ask any questions about your trip but you’ll get his full life story and a bit of boasting about what he has now. If you manage to humour the conversation without getting too annoyed, you may get a few sexist and racist comments thrown in there too.
The over 60 newbie:
Recently divorced his Western wife or never had a girlfriend, this guy is looking for a new one in Asia, or just looking for a good time with some young girls. He won’t talk much, he’s usually on his own in a bar but you can spot him a mile off.
The just-graduated party goer:
Usually found in hostels, wearing tank tops that reveal their nipples and covered in UV paint. These people are here for a good time and that’s it. They’re not really interested in the culture of the country, they just want to drink their way around Asia, they can be fun on a night out but are usually found nursing their hangover in the day time so not much conversation.
The fake hippies:
They’re young, middle-class and their trip has been funded by Daddy. Their hair is styled perfectly into the “messy” look, they’ve got a tie-dye top on and they’ve taken the time to make sure it doesn’t clash with their pre-ripped trousers. They like to sit in cafés and talk really loud about how bad Capitalism is, not realising the irony of the Che Guevara t-shirt they’re wearing.
The 90’s travellers:
These are older, and have been here a while but they don’t go on about it. They came in the 90’s when you could get a bungalow on the beach for under a dollar and stayed ever since. Maybe they owned a bar at one point too. They have some good stories and are genuinely interested in what you have to say. Usually found in a bar on their own or hanging out with some locals. Our favourite people to talk to.