Monday, October 13, 2008

Mumbai Pune private Volvo buses

We had been to Mumbai over the weekend. My car's spare tire needed to be replaced and it was just the two of us traveling, so we decided to use public transport. We had a longer than usual wait at the MSRTC counter Saturday evening because our scheduled bus had a breakdown and we had to wait for the next bus to get ready. The train is a good option but our plan was adhoc and we could not have gotten train tickets. We were against private buses because of prior bad experiences.

So we reached Mumbai after a smooth ride and had a nice time there. Our trip back was a different experience. MSRTC buses ply from Dadar and have their ticketing counters there. Dadar was far and so we decided to give private buses from Chembur a chance.

We did get the tickets and got into a waiting bus fairly quickly but thats all the nicety we experienced. The bus was supposedly a Volvo but it had a suspension poorer than an auto
rickshaw. In spite of us sitting in the middle rows, we had to absorb all the shocks which probably also helped prevent the roof from flying off. The windows had no curtains and it was a night ride through the expressway. So figure the high beams staring at someone who is trying to sleep. The AC was hardly functioning inside the bus sealed like a nuclear reactor. We were gasping trying to breath through the minuscle vents above us that spat molecules of air which was absorbed by everything living and non living. The only positive we took from the ride was that it had less halts and did not even stop midway through the expressway. Unusual for private buses and good for the well prepared but pity others who were counting on the mid ride break to let go. We felt releived reaching Pune but felt heart fully for the others that got into the bus for a further 12 hour ride to Hyderabad!!


Rajkumar Iyer said...

You hated it so much ... think of me travelling every 3rd week in those buses to Hyderabad. Did not feel that bad... I guess when you are feeling sleepy watever is the state you simple doze off

PH said...

I really pity you!!!! I need to put up the horror story of travelling to Cochin from Chennai on one of those Volvos. Arghh!!!! BAD BAD BAD!!!

I can't imagine the plight of people, who need to use it every weekend!!

Maverick said...

@riyer: The private Volvo's have gotten worse these days. They are used like hell but never maintained nor replaced.

Anyways I can imagine you sleeping right through all this. You need a room full of cell phones with their alarms set to just wake you in the morning! :)

@ph: Oops..thats a pretty long ride. Reminds me of the long Manali-Leh road trip we did on bad roads but that was intended and we were prepared for the worst. I guess weekend travelers similarly resign themselves to the fate!