Thursday, October 1, 2015

The Buses Aren't My Friends

After moving into my dorm, my parents took me to the store with them several times to pick up things that I'd need (like food and contact solution) so that I'd be stocked up and wouldn't have to worry about getting to the store for the first several weeks of school. Now, that's all well and good, but the only way to get to the store is to ride on the public buses.

Where I'm from, only scary people ride the public buses and have bus passes, so I'd never been on one before and I had no idea how the routes worked. I googled the routes and picked the ones that would work the best in getting me to and from the store with my groceries and then I waited at the bus stop outside my building to start my new journey with the bus system.

As many of you know from my previous posts, I get motion sickness. As soon as I boarded the bus, I knew that I was going to have a really hard time not dying while I waited for the bus to get to the store where I'd get off. The buses have a been "wrapped" with a big decal that has the school mascot on it, which makes it so that you can't see out of any of the windows while you're on the bus. In addition to not being able to look out the windows, all of the benches in the front of the bus aren't facing forwards! Only a few benches in the back are facing forwards! Basically, it was a recipe for puke.

I sat as close to the front of the bus as I could, trying to look out the front windshield, and sat crooked on my bench so that I was facing forwards. At first, this helped and I was fine. Something they may not have realized when designing the buses is that it's easier to tell when you get off when you can see outside and look at the landmarks or street signs. When you can't look out the windows of this bus, you have to look at the lit up signs on the bus that stated where it was headed (they had one on the inside of the bus). However, reading moving words on a screen isn't what you want to be having a motion sick person do, so I got off at the wrong stop when I felt lost and like I was going to throw up.

I walked to the store from where I got off, and was very relieved when I got there because I could breathe fresh air and walk around at my own pace. I roamed the aisles looking for the things that I needed, and then I checked myself out (as in I went to one of the stations where you scan your own items and pay for them).

When I got out of the store, I walked to the bus stop that was right next to the store (as I'd planned) and looked on the pamphlet I had grabbed of the bus routes to make sure that I was getting on the right one. When the bus came, I loaded up my things and sat in the back in one of the front facing seats to see if the results would be better than they were when I was sitting in the sideways seats at the front of the bus. They weren't. I started to feel just as sick as before.

The longer I was on the bus, the more confused I got. According to the route map that I'd planned around, my stop was supposed to have been the 5th one, but the bus just kept going and going and none of the stops were at the right streets (this bus driver announced the upcoming stops over the speaker system). Even though I knew it wasn't a good idea, I looked at my pamphlet to try and figure out what was going on. As you can probably guess, I just got off at the next stop with all of the groceries.

My dorm was about a 10 minute walk away from where I had gotten off the bus, but 10 minutes while carrying groceries feels like hours! Especially when you have no upper body strength.

I made it back safely, and all of the things I bought were still intact, so that's good! Hopefully I won't have to ride the buses again soon.

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