Minxi and my's travel involved airplanes, buses, subways, taxis, high speed ferries, escalators, motorcycles, and one purple PT Cruiser. Only once in all this travel was I really scared, though it seems funny to look back on. The local bus from Guang Zhou to Shen Zhen was driven I think by a man who'd given up serial killing in favor of the more sadistic sport of bus driving. It took us three hours to go sixty miles and Minxi and I aged four years.
He seemed to view bus driving as a macho sort of extreme sport where you risked not only your own life but also those of the people in your care. Southern China is growing so fast that the roadways are always a step behind. This can make the driving more than a little hectic. This guy though, was enjoying the challenge way too much.
I found myself wondering what sort of advice this diabolical character would give to young drivers just joining the bus force. By studying his methods and tactics careful between waves of terror, I was able to put together his basic strategy.
The Cross Town Bus Driver's Top 10 Rules for Fun and Terror on the Roadways of Southern China.
1. Your pedals are unruly scoundrels rightfully placed below your feet. They should be stomped and ground into submission. If they team up against you, smite them both at the same time.
2. You don't actually strike another object until the distance between you reaches 0. Demonstrate your understanding of this principle by approaching objects to as close to 0 as possible and then pitch your bus aside unscathed. This makes you appear both manly and smart.
3. Opening the door and shouting at pedestrians is both a good way to drum up business and to meet women.
4. People who get motion sick are weak. Making them vomit helps them build character.
5. Moped are mice. You are a cat.
6. Only wimps come to a complete stop. Macho men and women appreciate the challenge of leaping onto and off of a still moving bus.
7. Pedestrian and "Hood Ornament" are synonyms.
8. Staying in one lane for too long breed complacency. There are eight lanes out there for a reason. Use them all.
9. If your vehicle outweighs the cross traffic you have right-of-Weigh. They'll move. Oh yes. They'll move.
10. Route maps are only guidelines. Darting suddenly down narrow alleys not only heightens the drama it is also a great way to catch some laundry on the top of the bus. Fluttering laundry is a sign of bus driving done well.
With these 10 rules, you young grasshopper, can be the bus driver of doom.
Seriously. We had no problem with the in town bus service. And no problem with the long haul buses, but that bus that ran on the eight lane highway but still wanted to stop at every corner. Steer clear man. Just steer clear.