Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Adventures in the Back of the Bus

This is where I recount the adventures of riding the Taichung Public Transit System to School.

At the Bus Stop
Day ONE:
  • I arrived @ 7:59
  • Bus arrived @ 8:15

Day TWO:
  • I arrived @ 8:03
  • Bus arrived @ 8:11

  • I arrived @ 8:07
  • Bus arrived @ 8:06

It's okay, I still made it to school on time. Thanks for asking.

Today, on my return trip, there was a crazy lady that sat at the seat across the aisle from me. She had purple socks, purple shoes, purple pants and far too much red lipstick. Her bag overturned and the contents wound up rolling around on the bus floor. I leaned over to help retrieve the multiple packs of tissue.

"I'm sorry, I'm sorry! Thank you, Thank you!!" She said, far too loudly.
Luckily, I had just learned the Chinese words for "You're welcome" and "Don't worry about it."

Mandarin lessons are paying off!

At the next light, she moved forward on the bus, as we were nearing her stop.
The driver forced the door open to let in the next passenger - a young man, who moved very slowly as he climbed the stairs and scanned his card. As the driver accelerated through the light, and then tapped the breaks when the car in front of him didn't do the same, the young man tumbled and rolled backwards in slow motion, his feet high in the air.

The crazy lady loudly squawked at the man in Chinese as he fumbled to his seat.

Before I could tune her out and return to my book, the bus driver laid into his horn at the car in front of us. Ten seconds I counted. Still honking. I glanced out the window and realized, as we swerved back to the right, that the bus driver had considered passing the slow moving car in the face of oncoming traffic.

A truck whizzed past us.

To end my trip, I dropped the two $50 coins from my front pocket into the coin slot between the driver and the door. It was the shimmer of gold sliding into the bucket that made me catch my mistake. As the bus doors closed behind me, I reached into that 5th half-pocket in my jeans, and found the two, silver $10 coins I intended to leave. $80 overpay, and the driver won't even consider it a tip.

I guess it's true. You can't put a price on a good adventure.


Anna Lefler said...

Good Lord! That's quite a bus ride...but at least you got your $100-worth.

Wouldn't it be more relaxing just to ride a unicycle?

:^) Anna

sarahlynn said...

My gosh what a ride. Chase, I love hearing of your adventures! Have a Merry Christmas!

Simplicity said...

Ha Ha Ha!! You definitely got your money's worth on that trip!

I guess the bus arrival is random at best!