Monday, August 2, 2010

A Trip to my Sister Bette's

It was the early part of September and Lee was incapacitated with a sprained ankle when I decided to take my semi-annually trip to visit my Sister Bette. The Flight up was long and un-eventful until I got to Providence RI where “All hell broke loose”. Normally I would fly into Boston and take the Bonanza/Peter Pan (depending on to whom you are talking) shuttle bus to Foxboro MA where someone would pick me up. This works fine. However this time I discovered they have a Peter Pan shuttle bus from Providence. Foolish me, I just assumed it would be from the airport. Not So! To get to Foxboro MA one must leave from the “Terminal”.

Well here I am standing at the airport with no Peter Pan Bus and much weeping, wailing, and shrieking. Finely this lady who is trying to get from point A to point B hears my plight. She tells me to follow her on this bus that she was standing by and she would take care of me and see that I get the right bus to the terminal. Also the bus driver explains something about getting to Kennedy Plaza where there is a Peter Pan bus. Now I am quite sure that in this enormous barrage of information I was getting from the lady and the bus driver (all in their New England accent which my ears were not yet in tune to) that Kennedy Plaza and “The Terminal” were NOT one and the same. One must take a Peter Pan Bus to the Terminal from Kennedy Plaza. This fact however escaped my already frazzled brain. Consequently when we got to Kennedy Plaza, the lady who was going to “help” me ran ahead while I am struggling with my two bags getting off the bus. I look up ahead through the teeming throng of people and my lady is standing there flagging me on. We went into the ticket place to find the Peter Pan bus had gone and the next bus would be in 2 hours getting me to Foxboro God willing somewhere around 5ish.

Now let me digress for just a moment and get back to this bus that I rode in from the airport. This was quite a different story. My lady and the bus driver are telling in me to get onto this bus and all would be well I asked somewhere along the way if this was a “free” shuttle. As I said I was pretty frazzled by now. No, it is not a free shuttle so I get on and ask the price of the ride and am told that it is $1.50. All I had were $20s. Driver couldn't make change. I am near tears by now. Another “lady” on the bus makes change for me (Bless her heart) and I pay the driver. Well at long last it dawns on me I am on a city bus. The said city bus wandered all through the ghetto and undesirables were embarking and dis-embarking left and right. By now I am getting a bit concerned about all the gold I am wearing about my neck so I tucked it in.

We presently arrived at the Kennedy Plaza with the Peter Pan bus that had gone and the proposed 2 hr wait for the next bus that is just getting me to the “Terminal.” I am struggling with two rolling bags and my shoulder bag. I find a place to sit and give Bette a call and explain the situation and that I would be very late getting in and would call her if and when I finely get underway. Now I go and look for something to eat. All I could find was a doughnut shop. I asked the lady in charge if she had anything besides doughnuts. Yes says she there were also sandwiches. I enquired as to what kind of sandwiches she had. Well she had egg, bacon and egg, and ham and egg. None of these sounded appealing so I said just give me a doughnut. She asked if I wanted anything else and I said well I better have something to wash it down just give me a cup of coffee. “Hot or cold” she replies. I said give me hot. So she did and boy was it hot! I asked if she had any of those things to put around the cup to protect your fingers. She didn’t but she gave me another cup. Well here I am now struggling with two rolling suitcases, a shoulder bag, a bag with my doughnut and my scalding cup of coffee. I am thinking now how in the world am I going to get moving. So I devise this devious plot where I move one suitcase, come back and get the other one etc etc. Well at this very point “All hell breaks loose once more.” A street person approaches me and starts yammering (have no clue what he was saying) my phone starts to ring and I can’t get to it with all this stuff, I am struggling to find the phone the street person is still there finely I shrieked at hem “Get away from me, Get away from me” Probably scared the hell right out of him. He left, I found my phone and it was my sister. She said “Get a cab and come there right now and she would pay for it” Well I still have the problem of getting all this stuffed moved. I turned around and there was the street man. I shoved the scalding coffee at him and took off out the door. There was the cab and I was saved from Part one of this dreadful saga. And all this cost me was $50.00. Well worth it.

Finely I am as my sister’s house. This was the very best visit we have ever had. We had a wonderful time. The visit consisted of several trips to various Doctors where we got results from various tests that she had previously had. All results were wonderful we were very happy with that. We went to an Eastern Star Past Worthy Matrons meeting where I was allowed to remain. This was great as the last time I went with here she banished me and another lady into another room. I was actually even allowed to speak, of course it cost me a dollar. Well actually it was her dollar, no on second thought it was Doreen’s dollar but that’s another story. We also went to a Christian Ladies luncheon. Good entertainment and a good speaker although somewhat longwinded. It was great food and there was plenty of it. At this point we were bringing so many “scraps” home to Ralph I am sure he must have begun to feel like a puppy dog.

Now we have the return home and all leading up to it. Somewhere along the way we told Bette’s friend Dottie about my ordeal in getting from Providence to Plainville. Well what a sweetheart, she offered to just “run me into Providence when I was ready to go home.” Not wanting to put her out I told her I really appreciated it but let me find out what the story was as to the bus line and if I needed to I would give her a call. First I went to the old trusty computer and checked the rout from Foxboro MA to TF Green airport and found that it looked promising. Not wanting to trust the computer I gave a call to Bonanza/Peter Pan bus lines and talked to a very rude man but after a fashion we muddled through our cultural differences and his information seemed to satisfy me. Yes according to him, I could get right to TF Green airport. I would go to the “Terminal” and another bus would take me to TF Green. Now keep in mind no where in this conversation was it even vaguely discussed that there may be a connection and/or timing problem. Yes I could definitely “get there from here.” Sooooooo on Friday after noon off I go to Foxboro to catch the bus. I have a Ticket in hand that says from Foxboro to TF Green airport. Still no word from the ticket agent there may be any sort of problem with timing or connection. The bus comes and the driver loads up my suitcases. I asked him how I find the TF Green bus at the terminal. Will there be someone there to help me or what. He says “You’re looking at him.” “Oh”, says I, “Will I be continuing on your bus?” “No”, says he “I will take care of you.” Hummmmmmm, where have I heard that before? We arrived at the Terminal. The bus driver is busy loading new passengers. He has totally forgotten I exist. I go up behind him and interrupt him with and “Excuse me, can you tell me where my bus to TF Green would be?” He points to the man pulling luggage off the bus and promptly turns his back on me. So much for “Taking care of me.” I ask the luggage man who is of another different culture and everything out of his mouth is totally unintelligible garble. By now I am beginning to think I need to send my “white – southern” ears out for some diversification training because I am sure having problems with all these different speech patterns. How did I work for Hillsborough County all these years? I guess this is what retirement has done for me I am now living in my own little Strawberry Ridge Cocoon. Any how what I get out of him is “The next bus over.” The next bus over was going to somewhere in New York. Back to the man. No it is the number 2 bus and he points to the next “bus bay” over. So I stand and wait, and wait, and wait. Presently a bus comes to this bay but it is going to Boston Logan airport. By now I am getting a bit nervous. But I wait and wait some more. Then I go back to my trusty luggage man and ask again about the TF Green bus. This time the garble that came out was something to do with, Friday, bus late leaves at 2:30 or 3:30 really can’t make out exactly what he is saying but it is now 3:29 so I wait and wait a bit more. Finely I go into the building (where I should have gone to begin with) and ask at the counter. It is now 4:00 Next bus to TF Green is 5:00. Yikes my plane leaves at 5:59. Now I don’t know at this point how far it is to TF Green but we are in the middle of a city it is Friday afternoon and there is no way I am going to get to the airport, check in and catch this plane. Now we have some heavy duty weeping wailing gnashing of teeth and almost in tears (I am beyond shrieking.) I lament to the ticket agent “This can’t be happening to me! Not again! I explained me last ordeal and how carefully I had researched this trip and how I was assured this was the thing to do. I pulled out my ticked showing I am leaving Foxboro at 2:40 pm and arriving at TF Green at 3:30. The good lady takes my ticket and disappears through a door and out of sight. I wait and wait some more. The famous man from outside strolls by. I carry on to him of my plight. He says “what do you want me to do?” Well what indeed did I want him to do? He is just a man who puts luggage on and off a bus. Guess I just needed to vent. I wait and wait some more. I am now getting desperate. I am thinking about taking a taxi but alas all my money went to pay the bus fare. I ask another ticked agent about the taxis and where the other lady was with my ticket. I am thinking maybe I can get some of my money back and have enough to pay the taxi to the airport. Good lady number 2 goes through the magic door. Presently out comes Lady Number 1, Lady Number 2 and a man. They tell me they are getting me a bus to transport me to TF Green. Oh my goodness. I almost get on my knees to them. How wonderful! I am thinking something like a courtesy van or a car but what do you think? They bring out a full sized bus just for me. No one else but the driver and me on this big bus and he takes me right to the door carrying my luggage and all for me. I just couldn’t believe it. Well folks I can tell you this. I will surly take Peter Pan/Bonanza again but NEVER, NOT EVER will I fly into TF Green with this plan in mind. I will stick to the Boston Logan – Peter Pan Plan from now on.

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