List love: totally overrated

How many times have you heard: “You HAVE to do/go/see/try it! Such an amazing experience.”? Too many.

There are some things that are just totally overrated. Where your expectations, which have been so built up by everyone else, completely exceed any possible reality, and you’re bound to be disappointed.

Here are the my top 5 experiences that have disappointed:

5. Hot air ballooning

So you get up before the crack of dawn, get into this giant basket that you can’t sit down in, even though you’re exhausted because you shouldn’t be awake for another four hours, and float along so slowly that a granny with a Zimmer frame could beat you in a race to the finish line. Yeah, yeah, the sunrise, and the view….BLERGH. You’re moving so slowly that the view stays the same for so long it becomes boring. Even losing altitude and getting right down close to the Cappadocian landscape won’t impress you after the third dip. All you’ll want is to sit your tired arse down, or get to the champagne bit, stat.

4. Paragliding & parasailing

Hmmm…there might be a bit of a theme here. But once you’ve jumped off the mountain, or been released off the back of the boat into the sky, you just kind of…well, hang around. For ages. And if you think the view gets boring when you’re paragliding because it takes you so darn long to get to the ground, let me assure you, staring around at the ocean is even worse. I actually had a nap while paragliding, probably because it was the most fresh air I’d had in a while, but still – the point is, boring.

3. The pirate ship

Are you seriously going to tell me that after the giddy heights and stomach churning lows of the rollercoaster, that you’re going to be happy with going up, and down, and up….and down, and up……………and down. And all the while having to throw your hands up in the air and fake scream? Please. Point me back to Rita, queen of speed.

2. NYC hot dogs

In fairness, New York hot dogs are pretty tasty. They’re just not that, well, big. After being conditioned to expect huge portion sizes in America, probably not helped by my passion for Man vs Food, I was kind of disappointed that they just weren’t bigger. Surely standard should be foot-long, no?

 1. Thai massages

Now let me begin by saying, I’m not one of those people who doesn’t like to be touched. I don’t tense up when people make physical contact – unless they’re a drunk stranger staggering towards me as I make my sober way home. So I wasn’t immediately “on guard” when I went for a massage in Thailand, many, many moons ago (I’ve been so scarred by the experience I haven’t tried again since).

Every single second of this massage hurt me. I was in the most intense physical pain I had ever had the misfortune of experiencing. Whenever I asked her to be more gentle, she would acknowledge my request and then duly ignore me and mash the crap out of me. NEVER AGAIN. If I ever want to feel pain like that again in my life, I’ll pick a fight in a bar and let them stomp my head in – and I won’t even have to pay for the privilege.

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