I didn’t get into Pittsburgh until 6 this morning, I was supposed to be in at 2. Here’s the story, told in a satirical way so you will smile instead of thinking “Wow this post is nothing but a bitch fest.”
I have a love/hate with a passion relationship with Greyhound. Love it because its cheap and convenient; they have buses that go everywhere I want to. Hate it with a passion because they’re never on time, and they really don’t give a shit about it.
My bus was scheduled to leave at 5:50, I got there about an hour or so ahead of time so. Good.
Now the thing with Greyhound is they’re always at least 5 minutes late; I’ve come to accept that, and five minutes really isn’t a big deal. So when 5:55 came, I wasn’t worried. I passed the time talking to other passengers, forming alliances, getting to know them because I am a young (and ridiculously attractive) young woman traveling alone; and no matter how tough I am, there is always someone tougher. Though I seriously doubt that because not only am I attractive I’m also a pretty scary person to deal with when wronged or cornered. I have no problem kicking someone’s ass if they pose a threat
Time passes, the bus still hasn’t come…its now like 6:15. Now as I said, its customary for Greyhound to be at least 5 minutes late, and sometimes they’re even 10 or 15. But it was getting closer to 20 and I was getting a little agitated.
I go up to the information window, having faith that in this modern day and age of computers and other sorts of nifty technology that they would have a way of finding out where the bus is or something. I ask the gentleman if he had heard or knew anything about where the bus was. His reply needs to be recorded in the great books of observation and wisdom: “It’s late. I’ll be here sometime.”
Thank you sir. I don’t know what I would’ve done had I not had you’re brilliant skills of observation and your ingenious vocabulary and knowledge. I don’t know why someone with your great communication skills is working as a clerk in the Greyhound Station.
The bus ended up being, not 20 or 30 minutes late…but an HOUR. Now it would have been okay…had I not had to transfer in Philadelphia. The bus to Pittsburgh was scheduled to leave at 7:40 we didn’t get into Philly until 7:45. I was watching it leave as we pull into the station.
The only other bus that was scheduled to leave for Pittsburgh was a 12:20 bus. I found this out through the kind gentleman that unloads the luggage and does other things…I’m not sure what but he was very sweet. The reason I found out from him was because the little insect behind the counter was a total waste of oxygen molecules. I went up to explain my situation and he told me that because I had a ticket I had to wait. I was next in line, and he took this person behind me. Normally I’m a civil and meek person, I will only speak up when I see an injustice. This was an injustice. I stated very calmly that I while I had a ticket, I was in a conundrum and needed to know when the bus was going to arrive in Pittsburgh; I was getting on it, and they would’ve have to call the National Guard to stop me. He said “Ma’am you need to calm down and step back so I can help the other customers.”
I couldn’t just let that go so I said “You know what you do that, earn that massive salary that you clearly deserve.”
So here I was, stuck in Philly…in the bus station…for almost 6 hours.
The most effective way for dealing with bus stations can be compared to the Serengeti plains. You must make yourself the top item on the food chain in order to survive your stay;
if you are unable to do so, I suggest you sit near a door or stay in the bathroom until your bus leaves…just watch out for the hookers. Scout out your surroundings, make sure that you are aware of what’s going on and whose where. Claim and mark your territory…not in the way an animal does so…just pick a spot and sit down; place a bag or something next to you, trust me you don’t want anyone sitting next to you unless you know them. Watch out for the scavengers, creepers, and other predators.The other predators won’t bother you if you appear to be confident and strong, but the creepers and scavengers are usually suffer from bats in their belfry and poor social skills…they also smell bad. Deny them access to your personal bubble.
This bus arrived on time, and I behaved like a small child at Christmas. One must take in the small pleasures in life when traveling
I arrived in Pittsburgh extremely tired but safe and I had all of my belongings.I call that a successful trip.
Now off to New York for another adventure…and of course provide you dear reader with more stories.
It is here where myself and a few of my friends will recuperate before we head out to New York to meet the other group of people. I’m so excited because I only get to see these people like once or twice a year, two of my friends I haven’t seen in a long time; one of them its been 4 or 5 years and the other its been about 3. So this is a big deal for me, not only do I get to see people I adore but I get to share what I love doing most with them: the theatre. We’re cramming 4 shows in 4 days, normally we can cram more than that in but we need to save some for the summer ;]
The list is as follows:
I’m really excited because three of these shows are brand new, original musicals. Wonderland is actually a new interpretation of Through the Looking Glass so technically its not “new” but the music is composed by Frank Wildhorne, one of my favorite composers, and its so fresh and original that I think it could be considered new. Anything Goes is a revival of the original 1930s musical, I’ve never seen it and I love Cole Porter and Sutton Foster so I know I’ll adore it. I’ll be posting reviews and such when I get a chance.
I’m so happy to be here, you guys don’t know how wonderful this trip is for me. Its necessary element for me to maintain my sanity and happiness.
I’m off to New York!!! See ya’ll when I’m able to get to a computer :]
I am going to give all of you a warning in advance: this is going to be ridiculously long, but I’m going to try to make it an enjoyable read by peppering it with humor and heartwarming accounts of two sisters.
Its still going to be a long read. Just fair warning.
Chapter I: The Beginning
In case you live under a rock or somewhere that forbids social networking, you might have noticed that I’ve been rather excited about a concert featuring a little group called Celtic Woman. I’ve adored these Irish lasses for a few years now and have always wanted to see them in concert, alas most of my family thinks I’m strange and the ones that don’t are chained by the dreariness of two of the crappy parts of adult life: work and lack of time. So I never had anyone to go with and its no fun (not to mention slightly sad) to go by yourself. My sister was never the person I would think to suggest “Hey! Lets go see Celtic Woman!” however upon viewing the “Songs from the Heart” DVD (which I found on Amazon for a STEAL) she became just as enchanted as I did by these lovely ladies. With the aid of Google, mapquest and ticketmaster we were able to find our prized tickets and we were scheduled to leave on Sunday March 27th for Charlottesville, VA.
Before I go further I just want to ask the cosmos and whose in charge up there:
WHY DOES IT SNOW EVERY TIME I WANT TO GO TO A CONCERT THAT REQUIRES ME TO DRIVE MORE THAN 100 MILES?
Now to those of you who slept in on Sunday, or don’t live in Maryland or Virginia…we had snow. Not a lot, and definitely not enough to cause any damage but it was still frozen drops of death. To understand why I have such an animosity towards snow, all one has to do is refer back to the time when I recalled my and my grandmothers NIGHTMARE of getting to Baltimore for a Linda Eder concert. I am pretty sure I had a lapse in sanity and was filled with an inhuman strength as I defied the white demon and dug a path out of my driveway and with determination said something along the lines of:
“F**** YOU SNOW!!! I’VE BEEN WAITING 5 MONTHS FOR THIS!! YOU WON’T STOP ME!”
I’ve been undergoing anger management and therapy ever since.
So you can understand my anxiety when I awoke to find the ground tainted with this Satanic dust, I immediately made the weather channel the only channel that was allowed to be played on the television and dared anyone to touch it. Thankfully, the roads were beautiful both the ride down and the ride home so my anxiety was unnecessary.
Now I do want to note on traveling with my sister: Do not expect to stop unless you are bleeding, the car explodes, the tires fly off, or the earth in front of the vehicle opens up and attempts to devour you whole. Despite my attempts to empty my bladder before we left, I had to empty it once again. It took begging and pleading with her to stop on the Bay Bridge, threatening that I would pee on the side of the road if she would just give me a few bloody seconds. She begrudgingly stopped at a rest stop on the other end of the Bay Bridge Tunnel.
Chapter II: Garmin is a device of deceit and LIES.
We arrived in Charlottesville with plenty of time to spare so we took the opportunity to fill our empty bellies and explore a bit. Since we both enjoy shopping immensely, we took the time to explore the outlets that our Garmin noted were nearby. Another thing you should know about my sister is that she is a huge fan of Ralph Lauren, its probably to the point where she may want to get analyzed by a psychiatrist but I accept her because if she has to get analyzed I will surely be close behind her in a straightjacket. She was filled with overwhelming joy when she noticed that the device noted a Rugby by Ralph Lauren outlet nearby and we set out on a quest to find this treasure. The quest could be considered Lindsey’s Mecca, a spiritual journey in which the traveler is rewarded with beautiful robes of polyester and cotton with a large horse embroidered on the breast.
Alas, it was not meant to be for the Garmin deceived us; much like a biblical story in which the unsuspecting traveler is duped. We found that there was no outlet, and I suggested Banana Republic to ease her suffering. Needless to say Lindsey developed a deep-rooted animosity towards the deceitful device; similar to my hatred of snow. But all was right with the world once we set out towards the John Paul Jones arena for our, what was sure to be, extraordinary night. Little did we know that it was going to blow us away.
Chapter III: Songs from the Heart
As we took our seats, we were filled with an overwhelming sense of rapture and joy, we had just driven almost 420 miles to see this wondrous group and now that the time had finally come, we could hardly handle the excitement. Now aside from television and DVD’s neither of us has ever been to one of their concerts before, this was a new experience for both of us. I honestly can’t say how much it meant to me to have my sister there to share in something that I enjoyed immensely, we had done everything all by ourselves; traveling together and relying on each other to get us to our destination. That made this concert mean so much more.
Now I won’t go into analysis of ever single song that they performed, no matter how tempting it may be I will spare you the read and the desire to strangle me with your mouse chord or strike me on the head with your laptop. I will however share with you the songs they performed, yes I took notes; does anyone notice the lack of damns I give? Anyway I was so excited to hear some of my favorite songs live, in person, coming from the mouths of the earth bound angels that were singing them. There is something very special about hearing a song that has touched you or has a special meaning to you live, whether its a song that you enjoy because of the lyrics, the orchestration or because it speaks to you on a more personal level; I’m sure everyone reading this has had an experience like that at one point. Here is, in order the songs that they performed:
Níl Sé’n Lá (the group)
Fields of Gold (Lisa Kelly)
Coast of Galicia (Máiréad Nesbitt, violinist extraordinaire)
Galway Bay (Chloë Agnew)
Orinoco Flow (The group)
My Lagan Love (Lisa Lambe, proved that she was a wonderful addition to the group)
Isle of Hope, Isle of Tears (The group)
My Heart was Home Again (Lisa Kelly, Lisa Lambe)
Granuaile’s Dance (Máiréad Nesbitt, violinist extraordinaire)
Goodnight my Angel (Lisa Kelly, Chloë Agnew)
Danny Boy (the group, and if you don’t get teary during this song you’re a heartless monster)
Mo Ghil Mear (the group)
The Call (the group)
Amazing Grace (the group)
Dúlaman (Lisa Lambe, it was this song that made me really fall in love with her voice)
Without You (I’m not sure of the title, but Chloë Agnew and Lisa Lambe did a phenomenal job)
Your Songs Are in my Heart (Another one I’m not sure of, but the ladies gave a spectacular performance)
The moon’s a harsh mistress (Lisa Kelly)
When You Believe (Chloë Agnew, she really let her inner Whitney Houston out in this one. Whitney better take lessons)
At the Ceili (The group)
The Last Rose Fantasia/The Masons Apron (Máiréad Nesbitt, violinist extraordinaire)
Non C’è Più (The group)
You Raise Me Up(The group)
Finale: Mo Ghil Mear (reprise)
Encore : Spanish Lady
I could go on and on about how each song touched my heart and made me want to get up and dance in the aisles but I won’t because this is already three pages. I have to share with you an incident in which I’m still bitter about:
As a gesture of supposed kindness, you received a poster with any apparel purchase. Naturally I had my eye on the hoodie, a little pricey but my bills were paid and I was on a trip so what the hell? I purchased my apparel and received a glorious poster. It was beautiful: all four of the CW members behind the “Songs from the Heart” logo; I adore posters though I am running out of wall space to put them, the ceiling still has plenty of room though. I gently rolled my poster up, securing it with a hair tie and placed it delicately in the seat next to me. Throughout the entire concert, my poster and shirt remained safe in the seat beside me; we had moved from our original seat to the first row of the balcony after the lights went down…after all they were empty and its not like we were sitting in a more expensive seat so we rebelled.
After the Nazi usher warned us not to take any more pictures, we sat in pure awe of the amazing spectacle before us; my poster remained safe by my side as the concert went on. When it was time to leave I gathered my items and proceeded to follow Lindsey, however we soon found that there was a spectacular finale, I was filled with such joy and rapture at this unexpected event that I forgot I was holding my items. As if it were in slow motion, I watched my precious poster topple over the side of the balcony and plummet to its death on the floor below; I was grief-stricken and rushed out to retrieve it. Apparently every single usher that works in the JPJ was under Hitlers regime for as I approached the one guarding the lower level entrance, he stated that he could not let me in until they finished performing; even upon flashing my ticket he still wouldn’t let me in because I was of the lowly balcony class. So I bitterly traversed back to my seat, but I was soon soothed by the sounds of “Spanish Lady” ringing in the rafters, I felt better after that. We left and I immediately rushed to the gift stand and explained my situation, I was hoping that this individual would reach into the depths of his soul and feel some sympathy for my situation. When that failed I offered to buy one, in hopes that money could sway him. He simply said that the posters were not for sale and I would have to buy another apparel item in order to get one. I suppressed my desire to slit his throat with my program, mainly because I didn’t want to get blood on it. I threw in the towel and bought a shirt for my sister, reassuring myself that I not only brought joy to her but I probably contributed to CW’s wardrobe fund.
I would like to think that some innocent child found the poster and saw it as a gift from an angel; that she would treasure it forever and always wonder who the kind-hearted person was that blessed her with this wonderful work of art.
Chapter IV: Next time, we’re renting a car
I would like to take this opportunity to say that though my sister and I have similar interests, we are very different individuals. We took her car on the trip because it got better gas mileage and I offered to pay for gas and the toll for the bridge; its relatively simple to convince my sister to do something. Lindsey’s car is her first big purchase and she makes payments on it each month, she loves that little car and is very proud of her accomplishment; I am very proud of her and think that she has every right to be proud of herself. Naturally she is a little particular with the way its handled, she wants whoever is driving it to treat it with respect; this is key because I was the one driving home so she could study for a test. As we were discussing how I was to drive and how fast I was to go, we drove right past the turn we were supposed to take….the turn that would take us back home.
Now any other person may panic, however being the seasoned traveler that I am…I simply swore. So began our journey through bumfuck Egypt and back again. The Device of Deceit took us on a very unsettling route back to I-95; the route reminded me of something from Wrong Turn or The Hitchhiker, you know one of those movies where two ridiculously attractive women are unsuspectingly attacked, brutally murdered and strewn about the countryside to never be heard of again.
It was at that time where I cursed myself for not bringing a flask.
This route made us incredibly uneasy and I would be lying if I said that there wasn’t tension between us, that we didn’t snap at each other; I don’t hold any grudges, it was Lindsey’s car and the route was scarier than Paris Hilton without makeup on. We eventually made it back to a somewhat civilized location and fueled up at a WaWa. I’m certain that if you were to traverse through the Amazon jungle there would be a WaWa waiting for you under a banana tree.
I couldn’t help but thinking that we would laugh about this later…I kept that thought to myself as I knew that stating it may cause Lindsey to leave me at this WaWa in the middle of Bumfuck Virginia. We found ourselves taking a rather long way home, going up I-95 N and exiting off of RT 50; very different from the way we came. There was a high point: we only had to pay $2.50 at the toll instead of the $12 we paid at the Bay Bridge Tunnel. Looking back, it is funny but I dared not laugh at the time; my sister may be three years younger but she’s got a killer right hook.
So that was our first road trip together, I don’t think we’ll be taking another one anytime soon but I don’t see this as a one time thing. This trip proved to be a huge amount of fun and, though I didn’t think it was possible, drew us closer to one another. My sister means the world to me, she’s the only person on this planet that knows me inside and out; this trip allowed us to discover each other again and I can’t put how wonderful that is into words.