Friday, October 8, 2010

The Bus Ride From Hell

Day Seven

On our way through Sexy-Town, Paris the previous day we had noticed a four story, three building complex of a discount store called "TATI" where we had decided that we would stop by and look for some cheap clothes. We figured we would want to have some coats and maybe some extra pants so this was our first stop on this day. We found a really nice thick coat for Jacob, who swore on all things American just two months ago that he would NEVER need a coat because he is physically incapable of being cold. I, on the other hand, was told and made to purchase the "sensible, light-weight" coat despite my constant complaints of being freezing even in the hot Maine summers. What is wrong with this picture? Anyways, not wanting to break the bank on clothes we called it good for the time being. We then headed to the Bus Terminal in the outskirts of Paris by Metro to begin our long wait.

We arrived at the terminal starving and thirsty and entered a large mall in search of lunch. I immediately recognized PAUL, a chain patisserie where I had eaten on a layover to Arles last year. They had a restaurant so Jake and I dropped our bags and took a seat. We were very confused because the servers would go to some tables, but not others…take some peoples orders, but not others…..bring some tables menus….but…not…others. We finally decided to get sandwiches on the other side of the restaurant and just eat inside. Our logic was: Both are owned by PAUL so you should obviously be able to eat your pastries in the seating area….especially if no one is taking your order or otherwise acknowledging your existence…right?…..right? Well, wrong. It is apparently the worst thing you could possibly do because we were rapidly chewed out by a fast-talking French woman who huffed and puffed and waved her arms around till she blew our house down. With that, we packed up our things and left.

Once we arrived in the terminal, we checked in and waited around for a few hours before the bus arrived. There was a group of officers and a drug sniffing dog which we figured was a part of the heightened security in Paris. The group seemed overall cheerful, and the dog was ADORABLE. It was constantly wagging it's tail, checking everything out, but clearly not on the job yet. It was playing fetch and jumping back and forth. In a moment of stupid passion in mission my own dog, I decided it wouldn't be any harm to take a picture of the adorable dog. After all, I was not taking pictures of the officers, a victim, or drug cartel…it was just of the dog. right? right? Wrong again, dumb ass. As soon as the little, annoying, orange laser at the end of my camera lit up to capture the image Jake whispers, "Kelly……" and I look up to see ALL eyes on me. Not only is every member of the squad staring me down, shaking there heads, but one is headed my way. Immediately I hold out the camera and show the man the picture, the delete button, and the picture of my sandwich showing him that it had been removed. Luckily I had recovered so beautifully from my idiotic move that my only consequence was being mentally judged by hundreds of people, and received a few dozen disappointed, angry, and degrading looks.

Soon all was well because we were boarding the bus! We had bought some snacks at the market because there was no way we were going to be able to make a 23 hour bus ride without ANY food. Of course they would let you eat on the bus, it is inhuman to think that an entire group of people can go without food for that long and NOT kill the bus driver. There are little trash bags at each seat, it must be for wrappers, right? RIGHT? AMIRIGHT!? Wrong AGAIN you stupid Americans! NO FOOD ON THE BUS (luckily this time it was not us getting yelled at, it was a poor little Spanish girl). The driver queued up some stupid movie and we began to sleep. Three hours later was our first pit stop where we were then given a 1/2 hr pee/food/leg stretching break before we would return to the bus and watch (ready for it mom???) The Titantic. We watched the ballad of Jack and Rose through the finish and then eased into yet another short slumber as our bus slowly chugged along.

1 comment:

  1. Mom says "Yes Titantic, rhymes with gigantic, which it was. Makes sense to me. All that being yelled at and you didn't cry? My girl's all grown up!!"