Dartmouth Jitney

The Dartmouth Jitney (Coach)

There are few times I can recall when riding in a coach bus for any amount of distance didn’t haunt me before it started.

I used to take the Fung Wah from NYC to Boston.  But after multiple bus fires and crashes, they were forced to shut down last year.

Dartmouth Jitney (Coach)
Photo Credit: Boston Globe

I had realized that I had every right to question how safe a $15 bus ride is long before this happened, though.

In 2010, I upgraded to Peter Pan Bus Company.  Not bad for the NYC to Boston trip.  Also, it was a notable upgrade from the Fung Wah (enough to justify spike in price, anyway.)

When I went back to America, for three weeks in April, I needed to make the most of my time.  I had heard for years that the Dartmouth Jitney (Coach) was a great way to make the trip from NYC to New Hampshire.  The DC travels from just outside Grand Central Station to Lebanon and Hanover, New Hampshire in about 5 hours.

Trust me, if you’re trying to get to northern NH, you don’t want to take a bus to Boston and have to switch over to another route all the way up north.

I knew that riding in a coach created to shuttle wealthy NYC kids to and from Dartmouth was going to be a different experience, but I had no idea that it would resemble that one time I got upgraded to first class on Delta.

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The seats were leather and cushion.

There were outlets on either side of my seat.

There was loads of leg room (which at five feet tall is still a luxury.)

There was a coffee bar.

Best of all, though, by far, were the other passengers.

Women aged 45-70 who live between absurdly priced pieces of real estate in Hanover and Manhattan and like to slum it on the Coach after a weekend of upper-class debauchery.

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I don’t watch any of the “Real Housewives” shows, but I’m willing to bet the ladies on the Coach could fit in nicely with that lot.

Also, the producers of the Housewives franchise should definitely look into a Real Housewives of Hanover series.  I would be petty and hilarious for so many reasons.

First off, they knew the driver by name as they addressed him while handing off their Louis Vitton bags to him.

The driver played along by showing a “genuine” interest in their weekend activities.

So… what did you ladies get up to this weekend <fake laugh>?”

“Oh, it was a quiet one.  Just a bit of shopping, the theater, brunch, and anal bleaching!”

Okay, I made that last bit up.  But did I?  Really?

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Don’t worry.  I’m gonna wrap this up.

My bus ride was at 7:45 am on a Monday morning, so I was hoping it would be quiet.

And it was quiet.  The ladies of leisure took to a separate rows of seats, put their feet up, and blocked out the daylight (and land transportation energy field) by covering themselves with designer eye masks and pashminas.

Except for that one lady, who was doing yoga poses across from me in her Lululemons unapologetically.

If you wear leggings that cost more than my entire outfit (including my shoes), there’s just no way we’ll ever understand one another.  I don’t care how much we both enjoy fitness.

We may have been sharing a bus, but we certainly don’t live in the same world.

To be honest, the entire bus ride felt like an anthropological experiment.

I didn’t make eye contact with the other subjects or disturb their natural habitat and because of that, I got to experience why the other half will voluntarily travel by coach.

The takeaway?

For an extra $125, you can probably avoid this:

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But not this:

Dartmouth Coach
Photo Credit: Bravo

The choice is yours.

 

largs

Hill Walking In Largs

After three weeks of having the fantastic (sarcasm), summer weather of Scotland, Luke and I finally got to get out on a Saturday and be with nature.

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One of the things I love the most about Scotland is that, no matter where you are at any given moment, you can be near cows.  A fact that makes me question my love of cheeseburgers almost daily.  I understand people who don’t eat meat when I am staring into these eyes.

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I am eating more turkey burgers now.  My compromise.  Raise your hand if you have been personally victimized by turkeys.

Don’t judge me because I’m already judging myself.

I was born in Vermont, so nothing lifts my spirits more than to walk through sheep shit, cowpies, swamp-like patches, and territorial livestock.

Nothing.

I even let my father take a look at the view.  He always loved hiking and constantly reminded me that placing myself in nature is the one true salvation of human life.

So, this walk was really for you, Dad.

Hill Walking In Largs

It’s cold at the biotch.

I love to go to the beach in July.  As I was walking along the boardwalk in Largs, I was texting with my friend who is in Philidelphia.  She was telling me she was planning to spend the day at the beach, and I let her know that I was also at the beach on this Saturday in July.  Wearing two fucking coats.

Hill Walking In Largs

I’m not gonna lie.  I hate not having a real summer. However, I don’t miss oppressive heat and humidity.  I do have a bit of a chuckle when it is 68 degrees Fahrenheit and people are like, “it’s ROASTING oot”.

Roasting? Hmm. If by roasting they mean it’s warm enough some days in July to wear only one coat and dare I say it, sunglasses?  Then yes, I guess you could say that 68 degrees Fahrenheit is roasting.

Hill Walking In Largs
#megafilter

I also love that I was able to add to my collection of abandoned Irn Bru container photos.  There’s something provocative to me about the nation’s best-selling soft drink containers occurring” organically” in nature.

Hill Walking In Largs

Inevitably, it started to rain.  So, we returned to Glasgow and got stuck into Stranger Thingswhich I highly recommend you watch.

Hill Walking In Largs
Photo credit: Breathecast.com

I, for one, am super excited to see Winona Ryder in something awesome again. I love her. I don’t even care about her Vicodin five finger discount saga of the early 2000’s. I totally owned a “Free Winona” t-shirt.

Hill Walking In Largs
Photo credit: Hello Magazine

To make a long story short, it was a good weekend.

Hill walking in Largs. Irn Bru containers in nature. #ExpatLife #AnAmericanLivingInGlasgow… Click To Tweet

Was yours?

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3 Ways Being An Expat Is Like Being 15 Again

I moved over to Glasgow from America approximately 14 months ago.  Living in a new country is exciting and terrifying at the same time.  Being an expat has its ups and downs as well, obviously.  I moved to Scotland for love, and there’s plenty of that in my life, but I still have many days when I wonder if I’ll ever really feel at home over here.

It’s the little things that make being an expat so tough.  Like, you know, everyday things that you learn to take for granted as part of your life that are missed once you are without them.  In fact, the other day I got to thinking after having to add 90 minutes to my travels  — because I had missed the train I needed by one fucking minute — that being an expat is pretty much like being 15 years old again.

I don’t know how being 15 worked out for you, but I’d have to say, without ANY hesitation, that my version of 15 sucked pretty hard.

Am I dramatic?  Of course, I am.  That’s what I sometimes do, though.  It’s how I cope.  So, you might be wondering specifically in what ways being an expat is like being 15 years old again.  Well, let me tell you.

  1.  You have to learn how to drive, take lessons, and pass a test and shit.  I have to learn how to drive on the opposite side of the car and the opposite side of the road.  Every time I’m even a passenger in a car over here, I find myself in a panic about how ass-backwards the whole Scottish driving experience is.  This country is full of rotaries and chaos.  Also, and this could be a category of its own, I am at the mercy of train schedules and other people who own cars.  Either that or I walk everywhere.  Which is fine, but, not always the most convenient option when it comes to the weather.

    Photo: Giphy
  2. You have no credit history.  Trying to get anything that requires any credit reference without having a viable credit history just doesn’t happen.  The computer will say no.  Always.

    Photo: Giphy
  3.  You have to make new friends and it’s super tough as an adult.  Remember your first day of school?  How much easier it was to make friends amongst your peers?  Being in your thirties and moving to a new country makes it super difficult to meet people.
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Call me a crybaby, but feeling like I’m 15 again can mess with my head.  At least I can legally buy alcohol now, and I don’t have to worry about dating.  If I had to worry about dating in a new country, I wouldn’t be able to stay.  Dating sucks enough on your home turf, am I right?

Don’t get me wrong, being an expat is super fun in many ways, but it’s not rainbows and unicorns all of the time.

Somedays you feel like a lost 15-year-old and sometimes you even need the tube of Clearasil to go with it.

3 Ways Being An Expat Is Like Being 15 Again #Travel #Expat #Wanderlust Click To Tweet

Would you move to another country for love, work, or just because?  Am I the only adult who finds it difficult making friends later in life?

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An American Expat’s Guide To Glasgow Weather

As an American living in Scotland, I continue to struggle with various things as I adjust to life here. One thing I cannot seem to get any grip over is, however, the weather.

Please don’t let me discourage you — it’s beautiful here. All I’m saying is, when Shirley Manson sings, “I’m only happy when it rains” it’s because she’s Scottish. Someone once told me that this song is about ejaculation, but almost everyone I met before the age of 25 was either on drugs or should have been on them.

I’d like to think Ms. Manson sings such a song to tell us how happy she is while she’s back home.

Photo credit

Seriously, don’t even listen to me.

So, if you fancy making your way over to Scotland for a “wee visit” I thought I might let you know what you can expect as far as the weather goes from season to season.

Without such knowledge, you might be unprepared for the unpredictability that is Scottish weather.

I live in Glasgow, so I can’t speak for the rest of Scotland, but it’s probably fairly similar.

Glasgow Winter

Approximately 10 days of this…

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Followed by approximately 80 days of this…

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Glasgow Spring

Approximately 10 days of this…

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Followed by approximately 80 days of this…

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Glasgow Summer

Approximately 10 days of this…

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Followed by  approximately 80 days of this…

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Glasgow Autumn

Approximately 10 days of this…

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Followed by approximately 80 days of this…

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Cheers to your travels!

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An American Expat's Guide To Glasgow Weather #ExpatLife #AnAmericanInGlasgow #Glasgow #Travel Click To Tweet

Are you only happy when it rains?  Have you visited Scotland?  Are you Scottish and want to punch me in the face right now?

Let’s connect!

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