Every night at 10:30 p.m. the China Bus leaves from the Goldsboro Walmart parking lot on route to New York City. (Well, tonight it was 11:15, but who is counting?). This was my new adventure and adventure it was, read on.
While I had the appropriate paperwork and identification it took the driver over 5 minutes to allow me on the bus. Once on the bus I feasted on unusual smells and a dirty vehicle with surprisingly comfortable seats and adequate leg room. Around me were loudly speaking passengers with their music the same. This is not what I was told the bus ride would be like as former passengers told me to bring a pillow as it was a good sleep.
This noise factor continued the entire journey. I politely asked a passenger to shut off her music and was threatened. This caused my seat mate to ask me to find another seat. Then at 2 a.m. the bus driver began talking loudly in Chinese on his cell phone and smoking. This continued till we left the bus at 10 a.m. He also spat several times on the bus floor.
When I attempted to speak with the bus driver he said he spoke no English. Funny as when he took my ticket he did. However, I have often known this to be the case with Asians -they only know English in business or financial transactions.
Our first stop was Sandy Creek, Virginia. What an impressive truck stop, with clean bathrooms and many amenities. See pictures below.
After this was another stop, however not as impressive as Sandy Creek. I also picked up trucking newspapers while at Sandy Creek where I read about women working in this industry, rigid safety controls, and fuel economy. Fascinating.
I digress.. To accommodate my seat mate I located a seat closer to the front of the bus. As I sat a young man turned and smiled at me. I knew in the smile he was going to inform me of the China Bus Rules. I said, “You never say anything to anyone talking on a cell phone or playing loud music?” To this he smiled and nodded. Then I followed with, “The driver only knows English when he takes the ticket?” This caused laughter and another nod.
Now that I have the rules of the road I am prepared for the return trip. Yes, this was a round trip purchase. With my tool box of knowledge I will bravely once again board the bus for return. Am I scared? Do I need to answer that?