Monday, February 20, 2012

Drivin' Mrs. Daisy

After the whole car-tried-to-kill-me thing I'm without wheels for a few days. This weekend was nothing, I don't go a lot of places on the weekend so I didn't even miss it. This morning though I had to get to work and didn't want to bother my husband by having him wake up the babies early (Let sleeping babies LIE!) and opted to take the bus.

I tried taking the bus once when I first moved here after locking my keys in the car at the grocery store and ended up on a bus going god-knows-where, freaking out, jumping off the bus in the middle of a busy street and taxi-ing it the rest of the way. That was when I spoke 2% Spanish and it was horrifying. NOW though, I speak 20% Spanish and figured I could handle it.

Last night my husband coached me on what bus to take where, what to say to get off and HOW to get off. Even how to pay, I guess you don't pay till you get off. I'dve never imagined that.

Anyways, this morning I walked out in the dark, nervous because of the dark and made my way to the big street. Nothing came. I went in the 7-11 to ask and they said wait 15 minutes.


I waited and a bus came but it was the right name so I started waving. *WAVE WAVE!!!* and was dismayed when a bus PACKED with people went FLYING by my face, people hanging out of and onto the door, and never slowed a bit. I waited for 3 more busses like that and started getting pretty nervous. Plus, I felt stoopid. There were other people standing around, taling to friends, aparently knowing what to do and where, and there I was a crazy white girl trying to chase down bus after bus like a rabid dog.

Luckily one finaly came from a side street that allowed me on and I got a standing spot directly at the front of the bus. Sorry Harriet Tubman, on these busses you GET what you GET and this was the only spot left. At that point I thought nothing could go wrong and was feeling pretty good, mabye a little smug at my braveness.

Then the bus started going the wrong direction.


No problem though, it was just making one of those huge turn-arounds and then we were back on track.

At about that point the motion sickness started setting in. I do ok in cars (in the front seat) but aparently on busses I don't fare as well. By the time I got off (practicaly RAN off) I felt 3 months pregnant in the morning. Who knew?

But whatever, I made it and I was happy. However, I was across the street from the road to my destination. Across the streets with 8 lanes of morning (crazy Mexican) traffic and could NOT figure out a way to get across. Seriously. I stood there for 10 minutes trying to find a moment to rush across and eventually in my traumatized, nauseous state was on the verge of tears considering getting a freaking taxi to drive me across.

Kind people and a good long red light came together and eventually I made it across. I started hoofing it as fast as I could toward the school. A couple of co-workers passed me (screw you too) by but the main jainitor took pity on me and picked me up for the rest of the way.

I got into the school and relayed the info to my boss who promptly deemed me "A princess" and then went off to the potty for a good puke. My boss is wonderful and he was laughing with me but I still don't think I'm a princess. If you've read my blog for more than a year you KNOW I'm not, but today I did feel a

Or not, I don't know, all I know is that my first full bus ride kicked my ass.

My wonderful co-workers offered me rides home and although usually I don't opt for any charity I GAVE in and said many thank-you's on my way home in a nice non-puke-enducing truck ride.

I feel like a wee bit of a jack-ass over the whole thing, I mean REALLY, it's a BUS ride. I rode the bus to school when I was FIVE. But here, I don't know, it's different and I don't like not being in control and DAMN IT I didn't vomit on the bus when I was five.

Co-workers have offered to pick me up in the morning but it'll be out of their way. I might give it another shot tommorow, just to see if I can kick-ass BACK. Or I might princess out......not sure yet.


Annemarie said...

Stephanie G said...

I can't ride the buses here either without puking my guts up so, I would be princessing my ass out or calling in sick! LOL

Gringa-n-Mexico said...

Annemarie - since you're a blogger, you KNOW that makes my day :)

Stephanie - REALLY?? I think it's the writing on the windows??

Zoe said...

Every day, conquering (maybe CONQUERING is too strong) a new experience and gaining confidence. Soon, you'll be running for local office and then there's no holding you back. '-)A wonderful thing about Mexicans is, they are always willing to help you.

LaGuera said...

OMG...I think I would have rode a donkey instead 0_o

LaGuera said...

OMG...I think I would have rode a donkey instead 0_o

Anonymous said...

Dude, intense!

I do ok on the buses here in Cancun, but during rush hour I wouldn't even attempt it. Crazy.

Anonymous said...

Oh, honey, you are being WAY too hard on yourself! Look at all that you've accomplished so far with moving to a foreign country and not speaking the language and making a new life for yourself! It's been difficult enough for me over the years moving to the U.S. from England and having to assimilate, but at least most people here speak ... a ... version of English. *grin* I've been in Houston for over 10 years and I *still* freak the eff out when I get lost in some part of this sprawling city. Toss in some GAD and some ulcerative colitis and you've got yourself one nervous wreck when faced with even the thought of public transportation (or being driven by others.

I'm the Mami said...

Princess out tomorrow, and be proud of it. Im sureone day you will happily return thr favor to someone else (or maybe you have already helped a coworked).

Nothing wrong with that!!

I havent been on a bus yet and hope to never. Call me a princess too, Im fine with that.

rubireyes said...

I ride the bus here a lot, but I still freak out. Especially when it is time to get off. I'm never quite sure exactly what to say and don't want to be the screaming gringa on the bus. As a result I usually wait until someone else is getting off close to where I want to be. This has led to me having to walk a lot further than I should have to.

Waitress from Mensa said...

As resilient and strong and fearless about other things—say, swiftly running water up to the floorboards of your SUV, crossing an international border alone while in labor—this bus ride must really have been tough.

Just a little note: half a lifetime ago, 27 years to be exact, I met my now ex-novio on a bus. I spoke not a word of Spanish, but (intrepidly, now that I think about it) took a camion transporting workers from the resorts of San Carlos to Guaymas. I wanted to explore Guaymas. I spoke no Spanish at the time, and this man kindly translated the bus driver's commands, then gave me a tour of the city.

We dated for about two years, then lost touch for 25 years. Just this month, we got back in touch. He has a family and is living a good life.

She-She said...

Just listening to your bus adventure has made ME nauseous...

Tami said...

You are one brave princess. I would have pooped my pants!