I am not a morning person. Especially if it’s one o’clock in the morning, but that’s when the bus that would take us from Charleston, WV to Denver, CO was supposed to leave. As I had to get our two daughters, ages four and six ready and get to the bus stop, I was pretty sure I’d have to wait and sleep on the bus.
It didn’t quite work out that way.
The bus got to said station about six a.m., and I was a little irritated. Spending five hours with two sleepy, bored kids is not easy. I did have my mom with me, which helped, but not on the temper side. She was fuming.
We managed to get settled in, but we had to sit separately on this bus, as there were no seats available that would keep the four of us together. Six very boring (and hungry) hours later, we got off in Columbus, OH.
Right next to where we were supposed to wait for the next bus was a well known burger chain restaurant. We went in and had lunch, which was the first meal we ate that day. Well, we ate most of it, when the dancing roaches came out to share, we left in a hurry.
Out of politeness to the next customer who would grace that table, I took the manager aside to tell her of the problem. She nodded and we left.
Now, there was a window that showed the table we’d recently vacated. We watched as she came out and sprayed down the table with a large amount of “roach b-gone” and wandered off to do other brave deeds…without wiping the table down. Ick.
Naturally, I went and reported this. The guy was nodding and saying, “well, it IS a bus station, after all.” until I got to the poison part, Then he started to take notes.
One would think our luck would change, but not really. On the way to Indianapolis, we passed by a gas tanker that was on fire (no explosion, but very scary) and then got dropped off to “eat” dinner at a chili house. Chili is ok, but this place served us with a concoction that would strip paint. It was totally inedible.
The next bit of difficulty came with the change of drivers. This was my first (and last) trip on this route, but not my mother’s. She told me that this guy was as mean as they get. Well, let me tell you that traveling on a bus with two kids and all of the stuff that had happened, I was feeling a bit on the mean side myself.
They overbooked the bus, and the last two people aboard had nowhere to sit. Our daughters had just fallen into an exhausted sleep in their seats and the bus driver demanded that we pick them up. I said “I paid for their tickets, they’ve been up since one o”clock *yesterday* morning and we are NOT picking them up.”
Mom thought for sure he would throw us off the bus, as he’d done it before to another mother. I think he took one look at the temper I was in, and two sleeping kids that would probably be very loud if awakened and gave in.
The last mishap of the trip came at the last driver change. The driver was new to the route, and got lost. Finally, one of the passengers got a map and stood next to the driver and gave her instructions. That whole process took two hours, just driving around the city.
As you can imagine, I will not be getting on a cross country bus in the future. I think I’d just about rather walk.