AKA the Rides of March
It’s the March Monkey!
This month, blork and Martine have suggested posts about “those memorable rides when you were a passenger and you did not know the driver.”
They’re looking for taxi rides, but being the generous souls that they are, will accept other passenger prose – which is good, given that most of my taxi rides have been, well, mundane. Ask Dr.T about the stag night cab, though!!
On the other hand, I have had my share of memorable transport episodes.
The never-ending bus ride
When I was about 18, I followed a boyfriend to Saskatchewan. Long story short, it didn’t work out. A good friend of mine (who, incidentally, features in at least two more of these “rides”) sent me cash for a ticket home – on the bus. My Sask friends loaded me up with chocolate and a copy of Playgirl, and we were off… and off… and off…
47 hours later, we had driven past about a million trees, not to mention the big nickel, and I had ankles the size of watermelons. Memorable for being the least memorable two days of my life.
Various rides in the Eastern Townships, often in the backs of pick-up trucks
Including one in which I discovered that the old flame with whom I was riding, en route to his place, was, technically, married. And another in which one of us required a roadside pee – this is the friend mentioned above – with assistance from two of us. In January. At night.
Getting there was half the fun – a few weeks into my vegetarian kick (which passed, although Dr. T is still going strong) I flew to Ireland, Montreal-Heathrow-Dublin. The Heathrow-Dublin leg was morning, so we were served breakfast: fried ham, sausages, bacon, black pudding, and the saddest fried tomato I have ever seen.
Driving in Ireland, particularly around the west coast, was unforgettable. Sheep-based traffic jams! Ancient Celtic cemetaries! 9th century coastal fortifications, half-eroded by the sea! The sea!! Beehive-shaped huts formerly inhabited by monks! Roadsigns in Irish! Etc.
More bus rides
When I was thirteen, I rode a bus with my grandparents from Glascow to Paris. The only thing I remember is that my grandmother nearly choked on an apple. Thankfully, there was a quick-thinking fellow passenger who stuck her fingers in my Gran’s throat and saved her life.
Countless rides with the ‘rents
My Dad built and raced cars as a hobby. I spent many, many hours in the van, en route to many, many weekend races. My parents had connections in the world of aviation, so the passenger seats in our van were airline seats, complete with trays and moveable arm rests – years before these became standard mini-van features.