I went to CamSur over the weekend to cover a wakesport event (board and skate). While it’s about an hour away by plane (Naga-bound) and shuttle, the magazine I worked for on this particular assignment sent us there by bus.
The last time I was on a long trip via bus, I was in high school and it was for our yearly field trip. I have plenty of friends who go to their provincial homes every other month or so on overnight buses. I thought I could just sleep the hours away, since I pride myself on my ability to fall asleep anywhere.
What I didn’t count on was a bus breakdown 4 hours into what should have been an 8-hour trip. From my light almost-sleep I awoke to the sound of the engine losing power and the sensation of the bus coming to a stop. Although the engine was still running and the aircon was at full blast, we weren’t going anywhere. And for 4 hours after that, te driver, the conductor, and a kind bsmate pumped the clutch hoping that the hydraulics would kick in. Finally, we started moving again.
Unfortunately that wasn’t the end of our bus woes, as there was also something wrong with the engine’s fuel injection system. Our bus started and stopped a total of 7 times before our replacement bus from Naga came and picked us up.
Total travel time: 14 hours.
You know what the clincher was on that trip? Three days later, we took the same bus back to Manila.