Travel Story: The Fan – London, 2011

Sometimes the most hilarious memories come from ordinary events in an unexpected place or time.

I had traveled to southern France for a work conference a few years ago. As part of this trip, I was able to spend a few days in our company’s London office. In addition, because I had friends in London, I made it a point to stay the weekend as well in order to spend time with them.

Imperial War Museums

Outside of the Imperial War Museum in London – one of my touristy stops while in London.

My two English friends, a wonderful young woman (G) and a great guy (N), had been close friends my final year of college, where they were studying for their year abroad. Skype and Facebook had allowed us to keep in touch, and so when I had this opportunity to be in London, I jumped at the chance and made sure that I had free time during a weekend when the two of them would not be working.

During the weekend I spent with my friends, we relaxed and were able to simply do everyday weekend activities – which was an absolute joy to me, since I was already exhausted from the long flight across the pond.

On the Saturday morning of my stay, N’s mom had organized a raffle and rummage sale through her church, so we were invited to check out the sale.

My friends and I decided to buy tickets for the raffle, as it was a good cause, even if we didn’t win. We put in our 1 quid to pay for the raffle… Lo and behold, an hour later, when raffle winners were being announced, it turns out that we each had won something.

Guess what I won? Something that I definitely would not be able to take in my (already over-stuffed) suitcase back to America with me?

A desktop fan. Though I would not be needing it (or ever using it), it provided a great memory and laugh every time I think about it.

Jen and the desk fan.

A photo of me and the fan that I won.

Have you ever gotten a gift or won a prize that was so inappropriate or useless for you that it was hilarious?


Jen Burstedt

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