07-06-00 10:00 PM The Adventure in Mexico

I should probably start this thing, as it will get me into the habit. Since Kevin is doing a quote, I will as well. My quote: "rot in hell". Hell is this bus ride, the endless hours spent moving. Half-asleep, drifting in and out of other's conversations. I can't believe it will take us 21 hours to get to L.A.

"An ounce of Soma..."

It would be nice if I could remember the quote, but I have retention problems.

The bus driver may have just threatened my life, but I'm not sure it would hold up in court.

Anyway, so we have just left Sacremento for L.A.. I have been sleeping off and on during the day and have not done any Spanish training or reading to speak of.

I have yet to have anything stolen, but most of my personal belongings are on my person, so I'm not that worried. What I am worried about it how the Mexican Hostels are going to be. At $25 a night, they can't be horrible, so we'll see how it goes. If I could remember any Taoist quotes I would insert them here. I could ramble on about the P'u, but somehow having an intellegent quote to put at the end of our thoughts makes us feel more intellegent.


07-07-00 12:00PM Adventures in Mexico

Quote: "Too busy looting to clean."

One would think that was the case today. After switching buses in El Paso, Kevin and I were surprised to discover that his garbage had been left behind while mine had been removed. Since we were forced to wiat over an hour while the bus was "checked", we postulated that they must have spent too much time looting through Kevin's stuff to change his garbage. The bus has taken on a queer smell of gasoline, but from what I understand diesel does not burn well, so I should be horribly maimed in the ensuing fire instead of killed.

On a side note, Kevin tells me the phrase "Don't mess with Texas" was started as a state-wide trash policing campaign.

Also, it seems there is a markable difference in the class of people that ride the bus, and the class of people that fly. Having a basic grasp of economics, you think I would have been prepared for it. Ahh-well, at least it takes me back to my North Portland white-trash roots.

It also seems that so many young women have consigned their lives to child-rearing. I can understand how the men in their life would be fearful of raising a child, but you would think some of them would be more cautious.

Maybe my view of sex is a little prudish. I just feel that sex should be something more then physical. Something you give to one person and no-one else. Maybe I have been brainwashed as a child. It would be nice if something in this life would be... special. All too often I feel that life is a series of mundance choices we make, and those choices affect very little. Maybe I want something spectacular to happen on this trip, maybe I want to know my own mortality, maybe I'm just tired. Tired of being forced into a mundane existance where the only choice I make is what to wear to work in the morning.

Maybe that's why I want to start a band, maybe that's why I dream about being a hero. The chance to live an extraordinary life, one that isn't planned around an 8 hour work week. One that isn't so focused on suck miniscule things, such as when a project ships, or how much I get paid. Of course, I could get married and end this debate. Having responsibility to someone else means a lot to me. It keeps my morals in check, it gives me motivation, all good things.

On the other hand, what did I learn about marriage from my parents? You always hurt the ones you love... because they're the only ones you can truly hurt. They're the only ones you know enough about, so when you get angry, you can inflict more pain with a single sentence that all the lashings and canings in the world.

I hope Chris understands what he is signing up for by joining the Army. Although he hasn't officially agreed, he did take the ASFAB, a military propaganda tool used to make new and potential recruits feel good about themselves. Of course, if that is what Chris needs to get him motivated, then I'm for it. I just fear change, either in him or me. We are both pretty close, and I would prefer not to lose that, but if it means Chris gets to start his own life, then so be it. I just hope he understands what "cooking" in the military is going to be like...


07-09-00 Adventures in Mexico

Quote: "2 padre, 1 baby"

I'll explain this quote a little later, and it's not what you think.

Joining us on the bus, was what appeared to be a normal Chinese youth. He was about 20 - 25, and questioned us about our occupation. He thought we were military personnel, which seemed a little strange, but I blew it off. I was later able to correlate this information with something else that came up during our bus ride, and it did very little to confirm his sanity. The next stop out of El Pase, which I can't remember, we picked up someone who make me again question my choice to ride the bus, the first being Chu, the Chinese youth.

The man we picked up, whom I'll call "Tex", bothered me from the start. His lack of shoes, and the fact that he took "Lithium" for his anger problems.

Back to the story, where things were progressing fine, the bus was fairly empty, so most of the patrons had their own rows, and we had just stopped at Wendy's for a quick meal. Getting back on the bus we were about to leave when we realized we were missing Tex. While waiting, we decided to wash the windows, which required us pulling around to the back. On the way there, Chu made a few remarks about leaving Tex, which although I had brushed off as joking, I should have linked them with his earlier comments about my armed force training, or lack thereof. So Tex manages to find the bus, boards and we take off. As we are pulling away, I see Chu make some hand gestures at either me or Tex, I wasn't certain. Again I brush that off, and we settle into what is supposed to be a long drive.

Just as I am nodding off to sleep I see Chu turn on his overhead lights and begin to stare at Tex. Normally, I am not very interested in what other people to to each other, but I happened to be in-between the two combatants. That and I felt if anybody on the bus was packing, it was Tex.

So I am trying to pretend to sleep as I see Chu begin pointing his lights towards Tex as much as possible. I also noticed that Chu had taken off his hsirt. About that time Tex felt compelled to ask Chu if he was staring at him, to which Chu replied with a "Yes".

Tex then mad ea few more comments and began to sink lower in his chair, presumably so Chu's light wouldn't be able to detect him. Chu took this opportunity to inform the bus that Tex was in fact the devil, and that he had come to get him. At this point in time I was hoping someone closer to the driver could inform him of the situation, so he could pull over and beat someone's ass.

A few mintues later, which seemed horribly long, I felt the bus begin to slow and we pulled into a gas station.

The drive, who shall remain nameless, promptly asked Chu what the hell was going on. Tex responded by going to call his brother, for the second time that night. The driver responded by getting off the bus to talk to Tex. While my only hope of salvation had left the bus, Chu asked the bus what he should do. One guy mentioned sleep, and I had the insane idea of having Chu take another bus. I think Chu got the hint; he gathered up his things and got off.

When the driver came back on the bus he informed us that he had kicked Chu off the bus and called the local police.

All right, one psycho down, one left to go. The ride passed uneventully from that point, and I found time to catch some sleep that been eluding me for a while.

When we made our next stop, the driver informed us that we would be changing drivers, and that Tex's ticket was probably not going to be accepted by the next driver, who shall also remain nameless. Why the first driver had honored Tex's ticket in the first place remains an unsolved mystery.

So Tex is informed of the bad news, and I guess he had forgotten to take his dose of "Lithium", because he began to yell and scream immediatly. I was outside the ticket office at the time, so I couldn't make out what he was saying, but it wasn't "Thank you very much sir, may I have another?"

Tex comes whipping out of the ticket office like a West Texas twister and demands to know the location of the nearest payphone. Wanting to be as helpful as possible, I point to the big blue box with a phone shape drilled into the side.

While this drama was unfolding, most of us got back on the bus. The driver, after talking to the ticket counter, got back on the bus and informed us that we would be down another passenger for the next leg of our journey.

The rest of the trip to Laredo was delightfully dull and I was able to pretend to sleep for much longer.

I have yet to explain this entries quote, which I will try to do tomorrow, hopefully on another thrilling bus ride.


07-10-00 Adventures in Mexico

Quote: "I have special, just for you."

Note: This will probably be part one of a two-part journal entry, but we will see.