A Mom, Two Daughters, and a German Go To Chicago…

…on a bus. The Megabus. This seemed like a great idea: big bus picks the four of us up in Louisville, drives us to Chicago, and deposits us right downtown. And all of this (four people, round trip) cost only $80. Heck, I couldn’t get gas for that price, let alone parking in Chicago. So, here we are, on a bus headed to the Windy City, with a wide variety of strangers.

Our bus was scheduled to leave Louisville at 2:30. We arrived 45 minutes early – I ALWAYS arrive early. It was cold and windy, but we wanted to make one more potty stop, so we wandered around downtown in the blustery wind. We were supposed to be at the corner (there is no bus station; you meet at a street corner in the designated city) at 2:15. We were there on time, but there was no bus. Now one thing I’ll admit is that I like promptness. Actually, I expect it. I was also a little paranoid that there was no bus. I had booked online, paid online, and talked to no one. The double-decker bus arrived at 2:40. Thank goodness there was actually a bus!

Because the bus had been traveling all day, there were several passengers aboard, so we are all separated. I am seated by a young couple, and the girls are somewhere behind me. Thankfully, there is wifi on the bus, and I brought my IPad.

Two hours or so later…
While most passengers are sleeping or quietly reading, the guy across from me has decided to play irritating videos on his phone, and he has no headphones. I, on the other hand, have earbuds. I can still hear his noise over my music. Four more hours. Our seats face each other, so I can’t even make my normal ‘you’re getting on my nerves’ face. In the past 30 seconds, I’ve heard the F word, N word, and a variety of other offensive words. Perhaps I’ll blast my Jesus music.

Later yet…
So now, the guy across from me keeps telling me about murders in Chicago. Thanks, Dude! Just what we need to hear on our way to that city. He continued enlightening Addie and me about the dangers lurking just outside of the downtown area, going so far as to tell us that before he moved to Atlanta, he had to pack an AK47. Sure. We do that in Perry County, too.

And still later…
We arrived, grabbed a cab, got checked in, and found our room. The hotel is beautiful, and only a block off of Michigan Avenue. Bethany was excited to see that we’re only a block from Bloomingdale’s – as if we could afford anything there! We arrived on a bus. ‘Nough said. We found our way – in 25 degree weather – to Giordano’s Pizza. I can easily say it was the best pizza I have had. It was a good experience, and we shared our stories about the bus trip. It was good for us to be around different people; it’ll make us appreciate who eye are and what we have.

We saw several homeless people huddled on street corners. As we were returning to our posh hotel, bellies full of pizza, complaining about the cold, it was heart wrenching to see these people who would be out there all night…and the next night…and the next. I wonder what their stories are.

It is late; I am tired; I must sign off.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. T. D. Davis
    Mar 27, 2014 @ 08:43:12

    I lived in Chicago for a year, and you hit both of my most vivid memories of the city: the homeless sleeping on El train vent grates and Giordano’s Pizza, the best on the planet. Wow….

    Reply

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