Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Travel Tuesday-A Ride on the Bus

A Ride on the Bus

I’m always a big fan of taking public transportation when I travel, because a) it’s just cheaper, and b) it is way better to see a place the way locals do. I am completely directionally challenged, and have found myself lost on foreign public transportation more times than I can count, but as a means of getting place to place I still prefer either walking or taking the subway/bus.

I was in Dublin with my parents and we decided we would go take a tour of the Guinness Factory, which is about a ten minute bus ride from the city centre. Luckily my parents agree with my “no taxi” philosophy, and we hopped on the bus to go down to the brewery. It was crowded, and it was standing room only. We made our way to the back of the bus and stood next to a woman with a small boy in the stroller. Nobody was really talking for the first couple of stops, but one of us must have made eye contact, because suddenly the woman was our new best friend.

There were no introductions, no “where you from”, her main mission was to impress us with her toddlers anatomy knowledge. The woman was clearly intoxicated, and she stumbled and slurred her words.

“Ssssshow the family where your poo comes from!!” she directed the child in a thick Irish accent. The child stared at her with a look I interpreted to mean “mother please, you are embarrassing me.” Personally, I think two years old is a little soon to be mortified of your parents, but in this case, I was totally on the kids’ side.

“I said, show them where your poo comes from!!” she said again, louder this time. My parents and I exchanged awkward glances with the other people on the bus, and they smiled back in that way people do when they mean to convey their sympathies at your situation, but have no intention of getting involved.

“Ohhhhh, he knows this!” the lady said to my mother, “show them where your poo comes from!!”

“It’s okay” my mother said, “he’s probably just being shy”, trying to alleviate the situation.

“No. No. Fine then!” throwing the child a fiery glance, “SHOW ME WHERE YOUR POO COMES FROM” she hollered. Everyone on the bus turned around and stared. It seemed to be taking forever to get to the brewery.

“Hey!!” she was suddenly shouting, pointing towards the front of the bus. “It’s our stop now!!” A small child started making his way from the front of the bus to the back where we were standing. The three of them got off at the next stop. Once they were off, everyone shuffled kind of uncomfortably.

“Yup”, one man finally said, “she’s on the bus with them all the time, every day, always drunk”. The situation was comical in one way, slightly tragic for the children in another.

We finally made it to the brewery, and hopped off the bus.

“That was pretty much the best bus ride ever”, I remarked as we made our way towards the entrance. We laughed about it, and then continued on the tour of the brewery. We came back from the tour with bags full of Guinness related items. Hats, mugs, chocolate bars-we had ‘em.

Standing at the bus stop, waiting for another bus to take us back to the hotel, it had started to rain. Large puddles had formed on the road, and we huddled under the bus shelter. A man came staggering towards us, walking partly on the road, partly on the sidewalk. He was clearly intoxicated. A car drove by him and splashed him with a huge amount of rain water.

“HEY!!!” he screamed, “You fucking wanker, come back here!!!” He started to run drunkenly after the car, but realized soon enough he was never going to catch it. He came stumbling back over to where we were standing. Being the only three people at the bus stop, he stopped and stared directly at us. His face was a mess; he had clearly been in a fight as his nose look broken and bloody, and his eye was blackened.

“Good day,” he said, directing his words towards my mother and I. “I’m very sorry for using such language in the presence of ladies.”

My mother and I stared for a minute before she said, “it’s okay!” He went on his way.

The bus came shortly after, and once again it was packed. We made our way towards the back, the crowd trying to make room as we went.

“Hello!!!”, we heard a familiar voice call out. “He’ll do it now. Show them where your poo comes from!!!”

And that is why I will always, always, choose public transportation to get me places when I travel.


lifelove'n'wine said...

Haha, oh my gosh I can't believe she was on the bus both times! That really is terrible about the children though. Breaks my heart:(

angryredhead said...

LOL, hilarious! You must join MatadorU, you have such awesome travel stories!

Laura said...

OMG LMAO!! ...

so... did he finally show you where his POO comes from? ;)

Dave "Loose Cannon" Wills said...

Hilarious! Lol. I laughed so hard at the end when you heard the same voice when you got back on the bus.

I imagine in it a Jerry Maguire-eqsue way too. Lol. "Show me the poo! Show me the poo!"

I agree about public transportation being a great source of comedy and adventure. I used to ride the trains during college and I never had a dull moment.

carissajaded said...

hahaha I hope that kid finally figured it out... or that his mom stopped being so obnoxious!

Sounds, like always, like a blast! I think I'm going to start taking public transportation here... adventures can always happen!

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