03 November 2011

"Don't know much" --Aaron Neville and Linda Ronstadt

A few months ago I had purchased half-price tickets for a guided tour.  I realized the tickets were expiring in March 2012, and, fearing the weather would only get worse between now and March, booked the tour for the two of us for this past Saturday, October 29th.  Fall is perfect for tours, no?

Er, no.  It snowed.  And sleeted.  And was quite cold.  The. Entire. Time.

To make matters worse, the tour guide was terrible.  Here are the highlights or maybe I should say lowlights from the tour:

*passing Pentagon*
Participant:  Excuse me, isn't that the Pentagon?
Tour Guide, looking around, in a blase voice:  Oh,... yeah.  That's the Pentagon.

*at Arlington cemetery, out in the snow/sleet, which by the way, only added to the feeling that this place is the most depressing, deathiest place I've ever been*
Tour Guide:  There are now 50 different insignias that you can get on your headstone if you are buried here.  Even Wiccan!  Wiccan is a male witch.
Hubs:  What?  No, Wiccan is someone who practices Wicca, regardless of gender.  A warlock is a male witch.
Tour Guide:  That's right.  I knew that. 

*still at the cemetery, sopping wet and still getting snowed on*
Tour Guide points to three stones at a distance:  Those are the memorials for the three NASA disasters. 
Me, thinking THREE NASA disasters?  Challenger... Columbia... Did they do something Apollo related?:  Really?
Tour Guide:  Yeah, the shuttle disasters.
I walk over to see these.  Sure enough, the ones on the left and right are memorials to Challenger and Columbia.  The one in the middle?  Well, here, look:

After walking back to the Tour Guide, disgusted, I say:  The middle one has nothing to do with NASA.  Go look!
Tour Guide, not looking:  Oh, I guess I was wrong.

*driving near Iwo Jima*

Tour Guide:  I don't know why the carillion isn't sounding.  That's really strange.

Maybe because there's no such thing as a carillion?  It's a carillon, fergawdssake.

After 5 of the 9 people cut their losses and took a cab home, they decided to cut the tour a bit short.  Best decision ever.  I can't believe I paid for this--even half price.

Which all leads to my question of the day:  Do tour guides agree to be tour guides thinking that they don't have to actually know anything about what they're touring because people who go on tours will just assume the guide is right? Grrrrr.