Sunday, July 01, 2007

I'm alive and not burnt to a crisp

I had a grand plan to take Greyhound and leave the driving to them. Oh, I was going to sit back and get some knitting on the way to Palm Springs and arrive unperturbed by the traffic and driving fatigue. The Greyhound station is only two blocks from my hotel, so no problems here. Oh, what a silly girl I am.

First, the bus from Hollywood stops in downtown LA where I had to change buses and wait 45 minutes. It ended up being an hour and 15 minutes. There are signs all over about forbidden
items such as guns, knives, mace, sharp pointy things, etc., yet there was absolutely no security check to make sure no one was carrying said forbidden treasures. And believe me, there were some questionable characters. Even while the television in the waiting area displayed CNN coverage of the London car bomb, there were suitcases sitting unattended.

As I was waiting in line, a man came up and asked everyone in line where they were going. "Are you going to Palm Springs?" Most of us were, but many were going to places like Riverside, Indio, Banning, etc., so everytime he got a "no" response to his question, he'd panic and ask more. Then he went to the counter and found Greyhound employee, who walked him over to our line. Behind me, there was a mom and her three (or four) kids. One, a little boy about 4 years old, whose name was either Brandon or Alejandro--she called him both names and he answered to both-- was a right terror. Then, a weird blond Matt LeBlanc wannabe scammed his way to the front of the line by chatting up some backpacking tourists. Jerk!

On the bus, Mr. Panic whips out a Boost mobile phone and proceeds to "Where you at" for the first 30 minutes of the trip. I gave him the "seriously? 3 hours of this?" look and he put the phone away. However, our driver saw no reason to hang up his cell phone. So what if 40 peoples' lives are in your hands, you need to dish. At every stop along the route, Panic would ask the driver or a fellow passenger, "Is this the bus to Palm Springs?" Oh, for crying out loud, YES!

2 hours and 40 minutes later, the bus pulls into a strip mall in the middle of nowhere and stops in front of a liquor store--"Palm Springs," announces the driver. Everyone of us with tickets to Palm Springs simultaneously shouted, "What???" Apparently, the bus station on Indian Canyon Drive is closed for repairs. Apparently, there is not a closer place to drop us off. As you can see here, I was dropped off at the corner of Vista Chino and Gene Autry. The arrow indicates my hotel. It was a $16 cab ride. (after a 15 minute wait, during which my ears got a little burned.)

Alls well that ends well, the room was lovely (see photos), the meetings were bearable, I won $100.50 on the nickel slots, and my friend, Terry, drove me home instead of making me take the horrid bus. Oh, and we stopped at Cabazon on the way home, where I purchased a summer handbag with my winnings. Woo Hoo!

King sized!!

with a sofa! Sweet!!!


Frank said...

Wow! I can't even IMAGINE THINKING about taking a bus to Palm Springs! I would have hitchhiked first...

Looks like a comfy bed though!

Catherine said...

I know where you stayed! I've stayed there before! Isn't it nice?

And you are a much braver soul than I for taking the Greyhound to Palm Springs. I'm glad you were able to get a ride back. :)