December 03, 2015

That Time I Mass Transited to NJ For Thanksgiving...

Let me start out by saying that this post has about as much to do with Thanksgiving as Die Hard has to do with Christmas....

The adventure begins on a bus. A Megabus...
I realize that I did this to myself, but somebody's gotta save the world, right? And it's very full because of thanksgiving, so I had to have a bus buddy. It was pretty much fine but once she was done schooling on her laptop and switched to interneting on her phone, I discovered that she must not know how light works because she decided she needed her overhead light to be able to see her phone.

4 hours later I see the highway signs for the exit I would take if I was driving. Another hour or so later and some traffic getting into the tunnel, we arrive in Manhattan. I grab my bag and dart to Penn Station. I arrived with plenty of time to buy my ticket and get what tasted like the best pizza I've ever had. It was New York pizza, so not sure if it really was that good or if I just thought it was due to how hungry I was.
I then even got a chance to sit for a bit (I know, I was already just sitting for 5 hours, but I was none the less tired from a long day of nothing, plus I did power walk 10 minutes to the station with a suitcase). While I was waiting to board my train, a lost soul approaches me. He asks, "Um, are we in Penn Station?" I nearly laughed but understood the uncertainty he felt. It's a huge train station that has exits to the subway, a tunnel to the Long Island Rail Road station, and the Amtrack... um... tracks. I said "Yes, I take it you have a follow up question" he did but I was unable to tell him how to get to Connecticut, as I only know how to get to NJ from there. I'd gotten a bit turned around myself and wasn't sure which way to point him towards Amtrack. But at least he knew he was in the right place.

Another 1.25 hours and I arrive at the train station in my parents town. Again trying to save the world, I walk from the station to their house. It's only 3 shortish blocks, so barely something to brag about, but I guess I did anyway.

7 Hours of traveling from getting on the bus to walking into my parent's house.Thanksgiving was exactly the same as every thanksgiving with the addition of the strange experience of being designated driver for my parentsNothing much of consequence happened for the next several days. I went to Chili's since my local one closed recently. I went to karaoke, played Risk (on a board that is 35 years old), and made some pottery with my brother and one of his friends who was visiting, and made the mistake of eating one of the Snickerdoodle Cronuts from Dunkin' Donuts. At karaoke I did learn that Achy Breaky Heart personifies Billy Ray's heart. Which is weird. I'd never actually listened to the lyrics before. Oh! And I saw the new Hunger Games in the theater in my town which is uber luxurious and somehow just charges regular prices.

The journey back to Manhattan was easy. I got another slice of NY pizza, bc obviously. I went to an H&M to try to exchange a shirt I bought when I was in DC a few weeks ago (there is no H&M in my town). While scouting for the shirt to exchange for, I overheard a sales associate saying to a customer, "if we don't have it here, you can try the H&M across the street." ACROSS. THE STEEET. That was really a thing! It was also where I found what I was looking for, so very fortuitous, BUT, ACROSS THE STREET! Bonus, I also discovered there was ANOTHER H&M around the corner from the first one! Yes. THREE within one block of each other.

Last, I checked out Old Navy because I felt obligated to, even tho there is one in my town now, but I always forget. Oh. By the way. Yes, I had my rolling suitcase with me in all of these stores (I actually did go into the third H&M, you know, for science).

After that, I was nearing the time of my bus departure so I head to the stop location. I had to stand in the rain for nearly 1/2 hr, but I was able to secure a seat to myself, and one of the better ones at that.

Then the two girls behind me start talking. Not talking. Gossiping. At first it was entertaining but sure enough it just became annoying. When we had a rest stop along the way, I heard one of them say to the other, "I've been to McDonald's before but never gotten a meal." She had some trouble ordering. My concern wasn't that she'd never gotten a meal before, but that she didn't say, "of course I've been to McDonald's before!" My fries and nuggets were delicious btw. All 350 calories of them. Oh, I've decided that McD's should start pricing based on calorie count. Punish those who are eating way more than they should.

The rest of the bus ride was fine, even though the mega buses drive below the speed limit resulting in never being on time at the destination, and the wi-fi being extremely slow. Pretty sure my analog modem went faster.

So, what did I do with all my free time at home and on the bus? I crocheted two scarves, three hats and wrote this post. I watched hours and hours of Arrow, the Flash, and Castle. And I caught up on Doctor Who, Walking Dead, and Once Upon a Time.

The Megabus arrived at the stop 26 minutes late. I was hoping to perfectly time the arrival so that I would make the local bus that would take me home. Easier to plan because they aren't generally really late all the time, AND there's an app to watch where they were.

Well I was sad watching my GPS app tell me that I was going to be 2 minutes late for my OTHER bus. But then it occurred to me to check where the bus was in case it was late. I must have amazing bus karma right now because it was 3 minutes late. giving me just enough time to get off the bus, get my bag, walk over to the local bus stop, and watch it come around the corner.

8 hours of traveling door to door, if I don't count the extra hour I gave myself in New York. And I was only 7 minutes late for work the next day.

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