Hush, snore, wait, hey: Hostel or Hostile

Vilnius, Lithuania: I am too old for this shit!

By Michael Hammelow-Berg (26)

During the last few years I have questioned myself: am I too old to stay at hostels? I’m tired of the ongoing struggle of getting a good night sleep, to avoid waking up your roommates and standing in shower line.

foto anders vereide
Michael at the hostel door. Foto: Anders Vereide

, Lithuania
My last stay at a hostel was in the capital of Lithuania. I stayed at Home Made House in the centre of Vilnius.

The entire hostel had a total of 12 beds: one room for 4 people, one for 6 people and one double room. And yes, you thought right: Everybody’s sharing the same bathroom.

I stayed in the 4-bedroom with my friend Anders – who had never stayed at a hostel before! Our roommates were two girls: one from Lviv, Ukraine and one from Madrid, Spain.

Hostel life
After getting some help from Domantas, our local pre-couchsurfer and guide for the weekend, we got to the hostel at 4pm.

We left our stuff, went out for food and drinks and let Domantas show us his city. It’s when we get back to the hostel I suddenly feel way to old for this…

We enter the room, and all I want to do is to turn on the light. It is pitch dark and I’m looking for my toothbrush. Phone light on. Trying to be quiet like a cat. Truth is – it probably sounds like an earthquake…

foto domantas var (1)
Anders and Michael – two mountain monkeys? Foto: Domantas Var

No surprise: we have the upper beds, meaning  two mountain monkeys from Norway are having their biggest challenged of the evening:

How to climb this wooden bed without falling down or making too much noise. Then, after a few hours of sleep: I realize I need to pee.

«Truth is – it probably sound slike an earthquake…»

12 people, 1 shower

I slowly wake up at 8 am and start the challenging down-climb, trying not to become the morning rooster who wakes up everybody else.

And for those of you who haven’t slept at a hostel before, this is when the fun begins: there are 12 people and one shower. You just gotta love it!

It might sound terrible, but when you are travelling you don’t rush. This is the beautiful secret of travelling.

While waiting, I talk with the other guests and share ideas on how to spend our time and money.

«This is the beautiful secret of travelling.»

Two nights at the home made house

After two nights and one hostel experience richer, I sit back and think about my experience. I have slept at airports, hostels, in tents, I’ve couchsurfed and lived with local families in Mexico and The Philippines – to say a few…

I always ask myself if I’m too old for this shit… and then I look back at all the great moments I’ve had around the world, and all the amazing people, who I still meet and travel along with.

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Strolling the streets of Vilnius. Foto: Domantas Var

Give it a try
If I always had stayed at comfy hotels, I believe I would have been much poorer in life experiences. I would have seen the world with my Scandinavian goggles, and not been given a wider perspective.

I’m not saying people who only sleep at hotels are narrow minded, but I do think they are an important experience poorer.

«I would have been poorer in life experiences.»


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