Monday, March 12, 2007

Bus stops

Overslept on Saturday morning which meant that I was having to make a real dash to get to the bus station for the noon bus or I would have to wait another four and a half hours. As I turned onto the road leading to the bus station I could see it loading up with people and with two minutes to go I thought I was going to miss it especially as it started chugging forward but something must have been in the way because it stopped, chugged, stopped and chugged. This was enough time for me to get close enough to start running to cut it off as it left the standing area… but with my first step I stacked it completely as I forgot that it was ice under foot. Damaging pride more than anything I fast walked past the taxi drivers who has all been watching. Waving frantically the bust stopped and let me on. I then clambered to the last seat in the back row.

Two and half hours later when the bus should be pulling into the bus station at Lisakovsk but actually is stopping 4km outside the town at the top of the turn off for the town. I push my way from the back to the front and manage to pick up a few others on the way who were going to Lisakovsk. The driver tells us that he is not going there when we get to the front because nobody has a ticket for there he has 30 for Kostani and 15 for Rudney – the two others with me protest and show him that here are also 2 for Lisakovsk. Anyway the driver apologised but said this bus never stops there (now this is where the confusion has arisen – he is driving the 611 bus which runs everyday at 5.50am and does not stop in Lisakovsk but he is not driving it at 5.50am he is driving it at 12noon and the 12noon bus does stop in the bus station at Lisakovsk… so he is correct his bus does not stop there but the timetable of the bus running does!). Anyway he gives us money for to call a taxi out from the town to pick us up – I was expecting to do a 4km walk!
While I am now a lot more familiar with the idiosyncrasies of the buses from Zhitikara they still have more surprises for me each time I travel! But that is part of the fun of the buses…


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