Burmese Buses Part 2: Bus ride from hell.

Not that I believe in hell, but if I did, my version of hell would be a bus ride through the Burmese country side on these horrifically windy roads in the pouring rain, with no space, unable to sleep, and feeling nauseated, while people puke all around me. Oh and in hell, I’d never arrive at my destination.

Well that’s what that Tuesday night felt like.

First, the bus was over an hour late leaving and when you already have an 8 hour ride ahead of you, well, that sucks.

Then we get on the bus and an hour later arrive at our first stop, our dinner break. We order some overpriced oily noodles and hurry to finish to get back on the bus to continue on. Meanwhile, all the other buses come and go and we are still sitting there. The restaurant closes down so we are all relegated to sitting in the parking lot as men work on the tires and or the engine of our bus. Bad. Sign.

We finally get back on the bus after an extra hour and a half at the rest stop. So now we’re only about 2.5 hours behind.

Once we get back on the bus we try to sleep, but, as usual, the freezing cold air blowing on us, non-reclining tiny seats, and general unpleasantness is keeping me awake. Then it starts pouring. And the curves on this road would give Formula One racetracks a run for their money. (That reference works, right?). I feel super carsick already and then people around us start puking. I’m utterly miserable. But put on my eye mask and my music and try to zone out.

Then all of a sudden I hear what sounds like a gunshot but can only be our tire popping because we all feel a huge jolt. So we pull over buy everyone stays on the bus. They begin working on the bus and all of a sudden the bus falls 3 feet very suddenly. Then a guy gets on and starts yelling in Burmese and people start to file off the bus. I try to ask what’s going on and this German girl says we all need to get off the bus because they can’t lift it with all of us on it. Great.

After 2 hours of sitting on the pavement at 3am and wondering if they’d be able to replace the bus if they had to or if we would just be stuck there forever, we finally reboard the bus. And about 6 hours late, arrive at our destination.

Post Script: This was the last bus ride I took in Myanmar. After this, I splurged for a $53 domestic flight. Best decision ever.

1 Comment

  1. Susan Orlins
    Jun 23, 2013

    I’ll think about this while on my 37-hour trip to meet up with you in Laos and my economy seat will feel like pure luxury!

    Can’t wait to see you!!

    <3 MOM


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