Mysore to Goa
Yes, I really am a nutter who choses to do 16 hour bus rides by normal buses. Although that being said, the so called 'ultra deluxe' buses don't really amount to much more and the more I save on travel, the more I have to spend on other things, no?! And the only difference between a normal bus and an ultra deluxe is the reclinability of the seats, so no biggy.
We left Mysore early - around 3.30pm - with a full bus. Every time we stopped people clamoured outside to see if there were free seats and threw newspapers or handkerchiefs onto them to 'save' them, so they wouldn't have to stand. It was pretty amusing.
Some of the pick-ups were at 3am and people were just waiting around in deserted streets for the bus to pass by.
Actually, there were lots of odd random people hanging around in the streets, by themselves, in the middle of nowhere, when the bus wasn't stopping. Kind of weird to me!
After an hour or two, the bus suddenly stopped and it all went dark. The electrics had gone. Comforting so early into such a long journey. It took the two drivers and ticket guy about 45 minutes to get it going again and meanwhile we didn't really know what was going on.
During this time I struck up conversation with some of the middle aged Indians around me. (I'm not a totally anti-social bitch. I do like chatting with people sometimes. Just on my time and my terms!!!). We chatted about pure randomness all the time the bus was stopped. It was very entertaining - especially as we only mostly understood each other and there was a lot of cross-translations going on!
With the bumpy roads and the lights going on every hour or so I didn't get a huge amount of sleep but the time passed quickly enough and my iPod kept me amused for the rest.
At one point I was SOOOO desperate for a pee that I got the bus to stop so that I could get off and pee behind it. Such a lady, no?
Actually (confession time), I've got into a habit now of not only taking advantage of toilets when I see them (sometimes this is quite a feat) but of taking advantage of deserted alleyways for - ahem - quick toilet breaks. Well, an empty bladder is a happy bladder I've always said!