Saturday, May 31, 2008

10 Things I've Learned from my Weekly Commute

  1. Greyhound / Voyageur has more than one model of bus. Some are perfect for sleeping - i.e. the headrests are at the right height for a shorty like myself and the chairs lean back a good amount - and have the better overhead compartments where it's easy to put your bags, and others, well, really aren't. Best to pray for the "good for sleeping" buses and to keep a good book on you for the "bad for sleeping" ones.
  2. My laptop battery really does have a 2 hour lifespan.
  3. You can get good reception of CBC Radio 1 in Montreal until about halfway to Ottawa, but the reverse is not true.
  4. If you're planning to sleep on the bus, don't act friendly to the person sitting next to you. Any act of friendliness, no matter how mild, may be misconstrued as an invitation to talk for the entire trip, at which point you will have lost valuable sleep time.
  5. The Ottawa bus station (on Catherine ave.) has a horrible selection of potato chips. They're too salty, too flavoured, and too greasy. If you really want chips, pick them up before you get to the bus station.
  6. The Montreal bus station's store is not open at 5:30 a.m., so bring your own breakfast/snacks if you want to eat before 8 a.m.
  7. More people take the bus as the weather gets nicer. Summer will be packed.
  8. If you sleep without bringing a travel pillow, expect a terrible crink in your neck.
  9. Buy the round trip Ottawa-Montreal ten-pack from Ottawa, not Montreal, and save about $35 because Quebec applies an extra tax to your tickets. and last,
  10. People in a state of travel are all slightly anxious, and usually eager to smile or talk. Somehow, while we're in between homes, we all want one more friend, one more conversation, one more connection, even if that distance is a minor or routine one.

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