Onibus, my own personal Amusement Park

Albamarina Nahar - Brazil

April 26, 2012

Everywhere I go, eu pego Onibus, (I take the bus).  Now there is a difference of the bus in Boston and Bahia.  You don’t enter from the front, you enter from the back here.  I live in Piraja and take the Conjunction Piraja bus which is never empty.  You have to literally fight to get a seat or to get on the bus, and trust me YOU want a seat.  Because traffic makes a 15 minute bus ride a lot longer. Now I am going to take you on the bus with me…but hurry up it just pulled up on the right for us.  If you don’t run to the back door to hop on, it will leave you.  You get on the bus in the back door and you do not have any personal space.  Why? Because everyone wants to get on the bus even if there is no space.

You pay a tarifa (bus fare) of $2.50 Reais and quickly find any seat that is near you (you want a window seat because of  air).  You sit on a window seat in the middle of the bus and you are a happy camper because you will feel the wind hitting your face on this crowded bus. You watch everyone else get on and try to find a seat with a smirk on your face.  But before you put your headphones in you look to the back of the bus and watch groups of teens jumping on the bus through the windows to not pay the bus fare.  You were looking for a quiet ride? Sorry not this Onibus.  While the teens are rowding up in the back, you look to the sides of you and hear a couple of women arguing with the bus driver because he was pressing the gas pedal while they tried to get on the bus.

You look to the front of the bus and see an elderly couple trying to sit down as fast as they can before the driver takes off.  Behind the elderly couple you see 3-4 children running to get a seat for their moms.  The bus is still not moving. Why? Because the picole vendor wants to sell picole (ice cream popscicle) to the passengers.  The bus starts moving. If you see a women struggling to hold on to multiple bags and also trying to secure herself to not fall over, tap her on the shoulder and tell her you’ll hold her bags since you are sitting down.

You better have a tight grip because the speed bumps and holes in the streets end up throwing you out of your seat in the air for a couple seconds.  You may slip your earphones on and take a quick nap.  Just remember to not have your music blasting because you might miss a juicy arguement or miss your stop!

Albamarina Nahar