Buses, Not Trains

 

Aubrey told me, “Take the bus!”

She wasn’t referring to just about any bus but the special line of buses that the MMDA (Metro Manila Development Authority) and the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) set up for the holiday season. The Express Buses have been given a special permit to shuttle passengers to and from select malls in the metro.

Though I wasn’t late to learn of the Non-Stop Bus Service, I was still a stranger to the excitement about it. Aubrey told me that, when she rode it, she was the sole passenger and they had a videoke party in the bus. Sounds inviting, doesn’t it?

So I noted the schedule of the buses. At Glorietta, I asked around where exactly at the mall did the Premium Buses park. A security guard told me that one parked beside G5. So that was where I headed.

It wasn’t hard not to miss.

Despite being sure that I was taking the right bus back home, I was unsure of boarding because it was still dark inside the bus. And no one was manning the steering wheel! But it wouldn’t be my first time to be the first passenger. So in I went.

Turns out, I wasn’t the first passenger. There was already someone seated in front while two men in identical uniforms were inside. So I took the second row, me and my bag of takeaway from Kumori. I love their Harajuku Cheese. But they still have to make melon bread.

Checking the clock, we still had more than 10 minutes before leaving so the driver, the first passenger, and the man I believe to be the conductor enjoyed the comedic stylings of the Porkchop Duo, as captured on DVD. I was asked for 60 pesos. I looked at the ticket but it is what he asked from me so I guess that it was it costs.

By 6:01PM, we left G5.

As usual, I braced myself for traffic. Also, this was Christmas Eve, which meant there could be more.

By 6:33PM, we arrived at SM North EDSA. That was strangely fast. I almost couldn’t believe that the ride back north was that fast and fun. I was wishing it was always that easy to get home. Unfortunately, the Express Buses only run until January 6, 2016. I hope they come back during next year’s Holiday season.

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