Yesterday I signed off with sounded like a toss-off line: “So, back on the shuttle bus I will go. And wish that it could be half as nice as a first class Mexican bus.”
Yesterday morning while I waited for the shuttle bus to take me back to Salem, my mother entertained my brother and me with her Mexican bus ride story. It was the late 1960s. She had headed south with my father and her cousin, Rachel.
I will not go into the details. Suffice it to say, she rode one of the chicken buses that now seems to be stuck in the American psyche whenever the term? Mexican bus” comes up.
Well, my shuttle bus was not a “chicken bus,” as you can see from the photograph at the top of the blog. The Valley Retriever runs from Newport through Salem to Bend -- and then back in the same day.
Greyhound once provided regional bus service in Oregon. No more. The market responded to fill that void in the form of shuttle services.
The Valley Retriever's equipment is the type of shuttle you often find in an airport parking lot. Twenty-two fixed seats that are adequate for the three-hour trip from Bend to Salem. Tough I suspect they get mighty hard on the final leg to Newport.
But they certainly are not what you receive on the premier bus lines in Mexico. Seats that rival first class airline seats. Food. Toilet. And the inevitable movies playing on the overhead television monitors.
I must confess that I have never set foot on one of those buses. But I really need to give them a try. If I can only get over my need to have a car at my ultimate destination.
I guess,though, that will be a story for another day. Perhaps when I return to Mexico in just under a week.
But I bet the Mexican bus will not have this type of cool logo.