#HostelStories Competition: And the Winner is…

#HostelStories competition

So, who won our #HostelStories competition?

The winner is: Russell Edney! His winning entry (telling us his best hostel story):

In a hostel in Japan recently a guest placed an eel in each person’s bed during the night in what I can only imagine what he thought would be a hilarious practical joke. This would probably have been a minor inconvenience at best if the sea creatures were dead; but they were not.

I awoke early the next morning to a girl screaming in the bed opposite me, before realising that my hair – which is fairly long – was moving of its own accord. Not knowing about the eels at the time, or why the girl was screaming, I cautiously ran my fingers through my locks only to find that – yup, you guessed it – one of the slimy critters had worked its way into my hair, presumably whilst I slept peacefully during the night.

Then I started screaming as well.

God, I love hostels!

Congratulations Russell on winning a Kindle!

Russell’s winning entry was picked at random from a shortlist of our ten favourite entries…

The Shortlist

Stories that make you fear sharing a dorm with strangers…

1. I stayed at a very popular hostel in Amsterdam. On arrival to the dorm I was greeted by a naked man telling off his ‘friend’. The friend was apparently ‘an invisible species of butterfly’, which he kept in a cage. Not only did he carry this empty cage everywhere but he also had a stuffed duck which he took everywhere and would occasionally accuse of ”looking at him funny”. Never found out his name, saw him outside the hostel or any evidence he even had clothes let alone wore them; but remembering his attempts to ‘booty pop’ in front of the mirror still crack me up. – Amanda

2. We were staying at a hostel in Norfolk with one incredibly strange chap named Ethan. One night there was an awful noise of thumping and ferocious growling coming from the garden. When we all, rather cowardly, went down to investigate we found a worryingly manic Ethan, stripped to the waist and covered in mud, sitting on top of a wheelie bin in which he had trapped an incredibly furious badger inside. His suggestion that we could let the beast live with us in the hostel were politely rebuffed, although give his mental state I think a rabid woodland creature might have been a less unsettling neighbour. If you’re reading this Ethan, hello, you utter lunatic. – Andrew

3. In a hostel in Japan recently a guest placed an eel in each person’s bed during the night in what I can only imagine what he thought would be a hilarious practical joke. This would probably have been a minor inconvenience at best if the sea creatures were dead; but they were not.

I awoke early the next morning to a girl screaming in the bed opposite me, before realising that my hair – which is fairly long – was moving of its own accord. Not knowing about the eels at the time, or why the girl was screaming, I cautiously ran my fingers through my locks only to find that – yup, you guessed it – one of the slimy critters had worked its way into my hair, presumably whilst I slept peacefully during the night.

Then I started screaming as well.

God, I love hostels! – Russell

Stories that make you go ‘awww…’

4. I had just arrived at a hostel in Phnom Penh, and as I was registering my details with the hostel I realised I had no idea what the day was, so I looked up and asked the person nearest to me. He told me that it was a Tuesday, and eventually we got chatting.

I found out that he was at the end of a four month sabbatical from work, and I had just started out on my journey. We spent two brilliant days together sightseeing, eating out and playing games like “spot the most amount of people on a motorcycle” on a rooftop bar somewhere in Phnom Penh, but after two days we went our separate ways.

I kept in touch with him while I was travelling and somehow ended up flying to Amsterdam (where he lives) for a week in the middle of my big trip to try and either get him out of my head, or make a go of it. I was far more interested in making a go of it and as it turned out, so was he. I spent a fantastic week in Amsterdam and fell in love with him. Then I went back to my travelling, even though I was sad to say goodbye, I knew that he was the right man for me.

When I got to New Zealand three months later, I ran out of money and I had to go home. Once I got home, he came to see me and my family and we very quickly moved in together as distance was an issue. We have been living together for over a year now so it just goes to show that you can meet the man of your dreams in a hostel somewhere… – Ashley

Stories that remind you how lovely backpackers are…

5. My coolest hostel stay was just recently in Munich. I came back to my room after a full day exploring the amazing city and it’s garden. Three girls and one guy were playing card games and listening to music quite loudly. They saw I was tired and asked if the music was bothering me. “No, not at all, I love Muse”. They exchanged glances and then said they were in Munich to see Muse and they had a spare ticket!!! But I had to be in work the next day in Regensburg a city 90mins away.

But to hell with it, sleep when your dead. I went to the amazing gig with the lovely people, got drunk and made the last train to Regensburg and had a whole 5hours sleep before heading to work! Amazing random perfect opportunities! – Gita

6. I knew that I’d chosen the right hostel when I saw that The Generator in London was hosting a Twister contest in their hostel bar. I signed up immediately and, after stretching my way into the finals, found myself squaring off against a six-foot-five (almost two meters) American guy in the final round. In the end, he won fair and tall, and I used my second place prize of a jug of alcohol to invite him to join our table. We chatted well into the night – he had just finished studying in Spain and I was heading back to finish my semester in Greece the next day. He was backpacking without any real schedule so I offered him a place to stay if he ever made it down to the Mediterranean.

The next morning, while packing my bag for the airport, I realized that my camera was missing. I went to the reception desk to check Lost & Found but there was nothing there, although the woman told me that the bar staff didn’t arrive until 2:00 in the afternoon, at which point I’d be on an airplane. I glumly took a business card and, as a last hope effort, wrote a note with my Twister-playing friend’s name in huge letters explaining my situation, the make and model of my camera and an email address to contact me on the off chance that he found it. Then I headed towards Heathrow with a heavy heart, mourning the memory card full of Greek ruins and irreplaceable sunsets.

When I arrived in Athens, I discovered that I’d happened to meet the good samaritan backpacker of the year! He’d seen the note, checked with the bar, retrieved my camera and booked a flight to Athens to return it! As a reward, he ended up with free accommodation and traveled with our study abroad group for about a week. And, as a reminder to always keep an eye on your valuables even when consuming alcoholic beverages, I also ended up with a bunch of pictures pair of bored bartenders posing and flipping off my camera. I guess I can at least be glad that it wasn’t my toothbrush…. – Auburn

Stories that are sexy…

7. I am a 21 year old woman from Canada, and this past summer I was travelling alone through Spain. I arrived in Valencia, checked into my room, and headed out to tour the city. When I come back to my 16 person room, I was introduced to my new room mates: 15 members of a British rugby team, who were all completely naked. They had just showered and were helping each other rub in their moisturising cream. At first I was completely shocked, but once I got over that we all quickly became friends. I quite enjoyed staring at their amazing bodies for the remainder of my stay. – River

And stories that are not…

8. Once upon a time in rainy old Brisbane, myself and two friends found ourselves staying at Base Central Hostel, a perfectly fine establishment. Perfectly fine that is, until we get to our room, a 10 bed female dorm…possibly the messiest room I’ve ever set foot in, and we’d stayed in a lot of different hostels prior to this! There was even a note on the door from the hostel telling the girls to tidy up or else!

Anyway, the mess is only part of the story.

On our second night there, I was woken at about 1:30am by Rachel and Rosa (my travelling buddies) in fits of laughter, looking puzzled, bemused and, above all, horrified. I looked down and saw that there was a random girl sitting on Rosa’s bed, with no clothes on her bottom half. I was more than confused. I eventually realised, after trying to get words out of Rach and Rosa, who just couldn’t stop laughing, that this was a girl who slept in our room, but she had somehow managed, in her drunken (or otherwise intoxicated) state, to climb down from her top bunk, make it to Rosa’s bed (a bottom bunk) and, apparently thinking she was in the bathroom, remove her leggings and underwear, before proceeding to pee all over Rosa’s bed and bags (which were just under the bed).

Yes, you read that correctly…shall I repeat it? She PEED on Rosa’s bed! EURGH! This girl was completely out of it, had absolutely no idea what she’d done and then just got into Rosa’s bed and passed out, ignoring our protestations that this was not her bed! Rachel and Rosa went down to reception to get someone to come up and sort it all out, but he had no idea what he was doing, so in the end Rosa got a private room for the night and we just decided to sort the rest out in the morning. I think we were in shock…I still get fits of laughter whenever I think about it! – Rusja

Stories about family travel…

9. My grandmother, keen to show she could still out-adventure anyone, met me in Sofia for a weekend during my year long trip around Europe. She’s been to just about as many countries as her 72 years would allow, and has shied away from not a single challenge; from living for 3 months in a yurt in the Swiss alps, to cycling around Malawi, and walking the Great Wall of China.
As much as I am COMPLETELY INSPIRED BY HER EVERY DAY, our relationship has always seemed a little business like (she’s a prim and proper lady who wishes to bring her grandchildren up to be prim and proper too), she doesn’t share many of what I can only imagine are some incredible stories, and we all take great pains to mind out P’s and Q’s around her.

Eschewing a private room, my petite Granny happily pitched up with me in the 12 bed dorm I’d been in for 4 days now. The hostel crowd had been really great, barring one guy who was a bit of a ‘harmless’ sleaze..making a few bad ‘jokes’ that would make people a bit uncomfortable until he apologised for them.

On the first night, tucked up in bed with her flannel pyjamas and moisturising gloves, my Grandmother was treated to a 4am barrage of swears and semi-nudity as the majority of our room came home from a night out and got into bed themselves. In among the melee, our sleaziest house mate piped up and started offering up his excellent skills in bed, moving from one girls bed to the other just to double check they didn’t want shown ‘the greatest time of their lives’. He reached my bed and before he could utter another sleazy syllable, quick as a flash my thus far demure grandmother leapt up and without a flicker of an eyelid let loose a tirade of language that would make a sailor blush. Ending with the assertion that he ‘wouldn’t know what to do with the good stuff anyway’, she got back into bed, replaced her eye mask, and nodded off to sleep.

We’ve not spoke of it since, that would be unseemly, right? – Louise

And stories that are just silly!

10. I am almost certain this is what happened. I was staying in a Hostel in Scotland. Nice place, hot water, sky tv etc. On the second night a strange man called “Evil Barry the Evil Wizard” came to stay. I think he was an evil wizard. In the middle of the night he shrank me to the size of a toothpick as a punishment for not owning a kindle. I have now been the size of a toothpick for 2 years. Mostly it has not been too inconvenient. The main issue is typing. I have to jump from key to key, it’s incredibly tiring. It has taken me 45 minutes to type this! The only fun word to type is “qwerty” because I can type it by powersliding on my knees.I am almost certain this happened, but it is possible my overactive imagination made this up to make up for the fact that every time I have stayed in a Hostel, it has been very nice, and involved no wizards. QWERTY…. yay. – Chris

Thanks to everyone who entered!

 

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