As I sat on the bus from Montenegro to Mostar I remembered why I very much prefer taking the train. There are bathrooms and a restaurant and wifi on the train, and the first class cars are quiet. On this particular bus today there was a man who walked on drunkenly (I hope) singing at the top of his lungs. He sat right in front of me. He smelled like smoke and sweat and he was ripping at his fingernails which were covered in mud.. or blood.. or something else. He and his friend sat 5 rows apart when there were plenty of seats that they could have taken together, and just yelled to each other and laughed hysterically the ENTIRE TIME. Hours. I did that awkward thing a couple times that you do at the movies when someone is talking loud behind you (I think Ellen DeGeneres did a bit about this in one of her stand up routines) when you turn to the side dramatically but don’t actually look at them like “Please please please just stop yelling..” I consider myself to be a patient person but when people are uncomfortably loud in a small space for an extended period of time it can drive me so far out of my mind it’s hard for me to find my way back in.
I put on my headphones and turned up my Zen meditation to drown as much of it out as possible and I almost fell asleep when we got to the border of Bosnia. The border patrol officers boarded the bus and once again, mine was the only passport they took for further inspection. On the way to Dubrovnik from Split, I had to cross borders twice because of the small stretch of BiH, a town called Neum, that cuts Croatia in half. Between those crossings and my trip into and out of Montenegro today, I have gone through passport control like 1492 times. They almost always take my passport and no one else’s.
It is now 10:15pm and they just informed us that they don’t want to go all the way to Mostar anymore. Anyone going there (we are still an hour away) needed to get off the bus and wait on the sidewalk in the dark for the next bus. They didn’t tell us when it would arrive. So, I’m here now with just two other people, each of us fluent in a language the others don’t understand, sitting on the sidewalk typing this on my phone while waiting for what I can only hope is a bus coming to get me. Who knows, I could be waiting for nothing. It was hard to tell what the driver was saying, and although two really nice guys did try to help me understand, the language barrier was intense… so we’ll see.
Side note: I bought a bag of pretzel sticks at the bus station in case I got hungry along the way. I couldn’t read the bag but I recognized the picture of a pretzel. I just ate one. They are filled with peanut butter. #win. (Maybe I should have called this blog “Little things that irk me, little things that make me smile.”)
Update: 10:47 – back on the road. Please just let me get to Mostar so I can sleep. Every night lately I’ve been like “Wahhh, I’m too tired. I can’t do this.” and then when I wake up the next morning I’m like “Fuck yeah, world. Bring it.”
So, until tomorrow my friends.. <3