Until, after around four hours, the driver stopped the bus in a small vilage. He went into what looked like a shabby roadside restaurant. And took some 45 minutes to have a proper lunch.
Etched into memory
I am frantically grabbing my smartphone out, switching on Google Translate, to understand a bit of the ongoing conversation. To no avail of course, in this cacophony of sound. But several Mexican women explain, slowly and with gestures, what’s going on. There is only one bus a day, so the next one will come tomorrow at 11am. More or less. Welcome to Mexico.
Later I hear from my AirBnB host in Puerto Escondido of a bus that broke down in the village, and passengers slept in the shadow of the bus for 48 hours waiting for the next bus, because they didn’t have money to buy a ticket from another company. My financial situation isn’t so dire. So in the end – once I have cooled my head and anger – I decide to book a night bus from another bus company. No hotel, no waiting for the next bus the next morning.
That’s probably the charm of travelling as well in countries like these. You make it up along the way. Of course later on I write a complaint to the bus company, never to get a reply. But these are the things you expect. And there is always the Mexican hospitable soul to count on.
So the two women that translated the symphony of sound at the customer service for me, take me to the terminal of the other company. I swore not to eat any street food during my trip, but here I am eating 30 cent empanadas, fried in a bowl at the edge of the main road, as dinner with my two temporary friends. And after that the long wait awaits, almost six hours until the 1am bus.