My trip back from Cebu started on a not unexpected note. Upon arrival two days earlier I asked what times buses left in the morning around 7 and 8. The answer was 7 and 8.
I’ve learned not to expect much in this country so I was not surprised to find at 6:45am that the next bus was 6:50, followed by 7:30. I could see the 6:50 bus was almost filled, so I told the bus guy I’d take the next one. He pulled out a seat chart and asked me where I wanted to sit. Huh?? I recovered from my surprise and told him which one.
Window seats on the sunny side are my preference, as far forward as possible. The sun side seats are the warmest, which means I don’t get cold enough to start adding the extra layers I carry. I like the forward seats because that means one doesn’t get jostled as people climb over those seated on plastic stools in the aisle.
The Cebu South Bus Terminal has been under construction for months and it now looks mostly finished. Along with their new seating, AC and admission fee the Ceres line has added reserved seats and gate numbers. I consider this a Very Good Thing for two reasons.
The first is that I can wait outside the bus. Sure the terminal seats are not very comfortable but if I’m going to have my butt in the uncomfortable bus seat for 3 hours I sure don’t want to add half an hour before departure.
The second reason is that I can leave my seat to go pee 5 minutes before the bus leaves which makes enduring the next 3 hours easier.
But wait, there’s more. When the PA announced that the bus was boarding, they did it by seat number. What surprised me more is the people complied! It seems the ‘Fuck you, me first’ attitude in this country doesn’t apply in this situation because it’s not a case of get there early or risk not getting any.