Bus journey from hell - "jus fo mo ours"
Trip Start Sep 10, 2010
98Trip End Feb 19, 2011
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Where I stayed
on some shabby mini bus
Its always a bad idea to start a journey in the early evening - we normally try to leave late morning as that gives you time to wake up, regret that last G&T the night before, shower, breakfast and head off, arriving somewhere else later that night.
So when we only had the option of leaving Bali on the 7pm bus, heading off with an unknown agenda, we sort of knew it would be tough. The buses on Bali have not been great, when it’s a tourist route where you have no option, they tend to stick on dirty old basic buses. So we were delighted when the modern, clean, comfortable bus showing 007 movies arrived to pick us up. It was 2 hours to Gilimanuk, the western port from where ships leave for Java. We boarded a great little ferry where everything from a massage, to karaoke, to kids toys and cheap jewellery was on offer, plus some spicy rice and chicken dish served in a brown paper bag
Back onto mini bus and jeeps, we headed back down from 3000m to sea level to catch the bus to Yogyakarta, which should have taken 7 hours. By the time we boarded this bus, we had been on the road 15 hours
The luxury bus we had booked turned out to be a 12 seated mini bus with basic aircon and a slow slow driver who did everything possible to hit every bump in the road.
7 hours into the drive I asked him when we would arrive - smiling as usual and laughing away to himself he replies “jus fo mo ours” and keeps chuckling away. I asked Cheu what he said and he translated for me Four More Hours. I was already rocking in my seat by this point and mentally planning all sorts of options we could take, and of course there was none short of finding a “beam me up scotty” kiosk at the side of the road. I should explain that Java does not have freeways/motorways. In fact, they don’t even have town bypasses, just one long 700 km road that passes through every single town and village the whole length of Java. That’s a long way to be in a constant stream of traffic, bouncing around and every bone in your body aching, being driven by a smiling friendly mad man who just keeps saying “fo no ours” and chuckling away to himself.
In the end, of course we arrived battered, bruised, knackered and pissed off - thank god for the luxury and free upgrade that Melia Hotels gave us - the Spanish hotel chain is a life saver.