Festival-goer was left stranded in Croatia after friends 'left and took his passport'
Everybody has experienced those classic anxiety dreams at some point in their lives.
You know the ones: leaving the house with no trousers on, having to re-take exams that you'd already suffered through years previously, getting stranded in a foreign country with no way of getting home. Unfortunately, for 19-year-old festival-goer Joel Scott, this last bad-dream scenario quickly became a reality.
Scott, who is from Bristol in the UK, was visiting Croatia for the Sonus Festival - an electronic music festival offering everything from beautiful beaches to boozy boat parties. Despite its amazing appeal, the festival proved to be one of the worst experiences of the young man's life, as his friends apparently abandoned him on the Dalmatian island of Pag.
Rea Branch, a fellow Brit who was holidaying in Croatia, found out about Scott's predicament after he came up to them for help. "He just approached us and asked if we were English, and told us his situation," Rea told the Bristol Post. "He got to the hostel to find his mates had gone, and he thinks they've taken his bags and his passport. He's stuck here now, it seems."
Scott was supposed to catch a flight at 5am on Tuesday morning, but a Tweet from Branch shows the teenager clad in an orange lei and wearing a festival band - yet still looking rather sullen - on a beach at nearly 8am the same day:
Despite being "lumbered with some random geezer", Branch and her friends did their best to help Scott find his way back home. "We're actually staying in a different part of this area, and he's not got his ticket and not got his passport and he doesn't know what to do - he just came up to us at the festival," she said. The group proceeded to charge Scott's phone for him, and posted on social media in an attempt to get the attention of anyone who might be able to help the man out.
The Bristol Post were also incredibly helpful in the situation, putting Branch in contact with the British Embassy and keeping tabs on the situation as it played out.
A lost passport is obviously impossible to replace at short notice, so Brits stranded abroad have to apply for an 'emergency travel document' - a process which costs £95 ($120), and relies on the traveller being able to provide a recent photograph of themself and proof of their travel plans. When everything you have has been taken, though, this is an understandably tricky obstacle to navigate.
Fortunately, such measures were not necessary in the end, as the group of women were able to assist Scott to the airport, where it turned out his friends were waiting for him. I'd love to know what explanation they had for abandoning him, but nothing has been disclosed on the matter as of yet.
Perhaps there is a happy ending to this story, though, as Branch posted on Twitter that Scott is "a friend for life now". If I were him, I'd be looking for some new pals anyway - preferably people that don't ditch one another while they're travelling abroad.