Saturday, May 23, 2015

[CALIFORNIA] To Greyhound or Not to Greyhound


Given the busy route and the many carriers plying it, I really thought that going from LA to San Francisco by plane would be a showdown of lowest fares. I realized I was wrong when Kayak revealed that all of flights were in the vicinity of $75. That is why I decided to just take the plane back to LA, but brave the Greyhound to San Francisco. Booking online, the overnight trip cost me $25. Overall, my Bay Area trip back and forth just cost me $100, which is not really that bad.


Some friends from LA voiced concern over my decision to take the overnight bus, most in the name of inconvenience. I had my doubts, though. They grew up in LA; I was raised in Metro Manila. Add the fact that I’ve already experienced long distance bus trips in the third world. When I saw what the Greyhound looked like inside and out, my doubts were put to rest. This IS an OK bus. I will survive. The only negative aspect was my seatmate, whose clothes reeked of three weeks’ worth of body odor.


My seatmate was also rolling what seemed like marijuana, all while looking at his left pointer finger while his head dallied with a nonchalant wave from left to right. Maybe I would get mugged. Fast forward to the next morning, nothing really bad happened. He got off at Oakland. As for the bus ride, it was comfy enough in my book. The seats were of black leather and there are two power sockets for gadget charging. The bathroom resembled that of an airplane. The air-con was not too cold.


We were supposed to leave LA at 11:30 PM, but since this is not a central European city obsessed with order and timeliness, we departed at 10 past midnight. Surprisingly enough, the bus was already parking at the Greyhound HQ at Folsom Street by 7 AM, half an hour earlier than it should. Since the BART would not be operating until 8:10 that Sunday morning, I decided to just take a mini stroll. San Francisco looks more like the US than LA is. It’s hard to explain, but I think you know what I mean.

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