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Monday, June 12, 2000

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Home to Tucson

I woke up before my alarm and was ready to go a little after 6:00AM. I got some breakfast to go and coffee and went to wait at the city bus stop, which is very nice looking. I had seen the bus stop yesterday and realized I probably wouldn't have needed a taxi coming in. I knew the bus went downtown and that it started running at 5:00 AM in the morning.

The bus driver was a stern one and made me put my suitcase under the seat or go to the back. Later another guy got on with large bags and she wouldn't move till he complied also. I was watching the street numbers and rang a bell the block before the bus station. She pulls right in the bus station which is also the Greyhound Station and the fire department. How convenient.

It's only 7:00 AM and I am way early so I just people watch. One lady get's off a bus from Los Angeles and tells the counter lady to call a taxi and tell them she wants it immediately. The counter lady calls and says it will be 5 to 30 minutes. The other lady then spends half an hour throwing a fit and being very rude till finally she yells at a private person who was just dropping someone off and gives in and takes her where she wants to go. The counter lady said she does ths every morning and is totally stressed out every day. I've decided that people that are constantly complaining are very egotistical because they expect the world to sit up and do things their way. I don't mean that we shouldn't try to see that things work out as good as they can for us, but we can't expect everyone to do what we want.

Another guy is all stressed out because he came clear across country and his girlfriend won't take off work and come get him so he has to wait till noon. There was a lot of muttering and heavy breathing from him also. An older couple come in with their son. They're on their way to Las Vegas and he's making sure that everything is ok. Finally they had to send him on his way. One lady has a duffle bag with one of those large steering wheel locks duct taped to her bag. I mean large. It had to be at least a yard long. I don't remember that mine was that big when it was closed.

I walked around the terminal and took pictures of the city buses. It's nice to have both bus terminals together though I'm not sure what the Fire Department was doing there. It wasn't a fire department station as there were no fire trucks, just an office.

Finally several buses arrived at once. Everyone got sorted out to the right bus and I was on the final stretch. We took CA-91 Bus through town along Mission Street to CA-91, to I-215 N to San Bernardino. San Bernardino was chaos as always so it was nice to already be on the bus. We got back on I-215 S to I-10 where we finally headed west. There was a stop at Indio and then at Blythe for the lunch stop.

The lady in the front seat talked constantly to the bus driver. She had also been to a graduation, her niece in Oregon and was going back to Phoenix where she lived with her boyfriend who she had met online. The driver didn't have a computer as he didn't want his ten year old daughter to get on any porno sites. I am amazed that people still buy that. You can get perfectly good filter software and there is always the old standby of keeping track of what your kids get into.

The lady's boyfriend had lost his wife a couple years before to someone she met online so I thought it showed a lot of trust to get together with someone he had met on line, plus the fact that they both still flirt with people online. The lady said no problem, but it would be a problem with me. This runs into my belief about dating married men - if they are screwing around on their wife, who they have promised to love, honor and cherish, why should you expect them to treat you any better? If your wife ran off with someone she met online, why should you think your girlfriend won't?

At Blythe it was a crush, as usual, as several sections arrived at once and we all tried to get service at the McDonalds at the same time. I finally got a salad and milk, and went back to the bus to eat it. A couple backpackers got on here, two sisters from the Netherlands. One sat in the front seat and the driver gave her the benefit of his advice all the way to Phoenix. He was a real cutie, in his 30s, who was half French and half Italian and used to be a policeman in New York City and had an opinion on everything. I disagreed with him on half of it but it was fun listening.

The Dutch girl said at one point that she was an atheist and both the driver and the online lady went into a long discussion about how that was wrong. I kept my mouth shut but I wondered how the online lady could condone sex without marriage but not atheism. As long as you believe in god it's ok to people. It doesn't matter if you don't do what the bible says or go to church or pray or anything religious, but if you don't believe in god, no matter how moral and ethical you are it's wrong. The girl was very polite and said that was nice but she still was an atheist. Then she was told that it was because she was too young, nineteen, to really understand that everyone really believes in god in the long run.

Finally we arrived in Phoenix, thirty minutes late, and several of us had to rush to catch the express bus to Tucson. We could have stayed on the bus we were on but that meant staying in Phoenix for an hour, as it is a cleaning stop, and stopping at all the little towns between Phoenix and Tucson. The driver was just about ready to climb on board when we came staggering up, but we made it.

A couple hours and we were in Tucson and I got the 6 bus home and was so glad to see my place. I love to travel but all that togetherness gets to be a bit much after a while. Travel is such a group activity unless you drive by yourself and always stay at motels. Bus or airline travel, hostel or camping, always involves being around other people, even if you don't talk to them and you can't completely be yourself but have to maintain at least a minimum of decency and decorum.

I'm already thinking about where to go next so I don't mind the inconveniences. I just wish I had more time and money to travel more. I picked up a few counties in Nevada that I've never been in.

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(c) Rachel Aschmann 2000.
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