Today makes what I would like to call a travel day, well everyone also calls it that so I guess it’s not that big of a deal. Anyways I have been able to observe somethings that I would like to share with our readers about our journeys thus far. The first thing I would like to make clear is that every day that we travel, when we leave the hostel, the weather is the nicest that we have seen. So of course it is fitting to spend all day in a train or bus. I swear it is a curse or something. The second thing I would like to express is that public transport is a massive ordeal. I understand that I may not understand the concept of public transportation growing up in Denver, Iowa but from what I have seen is that public transportation is a large part of travel in the UK. I may also be biased given that our group has only traveled publicly because of the cheaper prices but we are not the only people traveling the same ways as we do.
The bus travel is very similar to the States expect the steering wheel is on the wrong side. However a large amount of the roads we came across in the rural areas of Scotland have been very narrow and somewhat treacherous for large charter buses. Today we had a tough bus ride on the Isle of Mull and if you didn’t take your Dramamine, you were definitely feeling a little under the weather. If you’re lucky you will fall asleep before the rough stuff. The roads have been so narrow that if there is a car approaching from the other side the other vehicle needs to slow to the side of the room if not stop completely.
Another common form of transportation is by train. I actually experienced my first train ride the week before I left for England. Even though it was a subway ride in Chicago I still got a little taste of what was to come. The train system is something that is not common in Northeast Iowa but it is something I really enjoy. The average time we are on our trains is about 3 hours so it is important to find something to keep yourself busy. My favorite pass time on the train is to play cards if I’m lucky enough to get a table seat with three other classmates who know how to play either Euchre, 500, Rummy, or 3 to 13. This trip has also taught me to interact with strangers more than I was already use to. We receive culture points for talking to strangers but I enjoy talking to people to hear their stories of what life is like for them on this side of the pond.
I have been very lucky to grow up in small town Iowa with the opportunity to drive wherever I needed but if I did live in a city as large as some of the cities we have visited, I would definitely enjoy taking public transportation to not only save money but to meet new and interesting people.