I know the bus numbers that go home...and as far as I knew No 3 doesn’t go home. But someone mentioned casually that it goes till a certain point (Toripakka), from where I knew that I could take the smaller city bus (Linja C) which leaves me just short of the door step.
So a couple of days later as we waited at the bus stop, I see No 3 coming along. I suggested that we try this bus out, because we can take the Linja C home. Other buses leave us at a point from where I needed to walk 1Km to reach home. Jayanthi told me to ask the bus driver if it actually went to the Toripakka but I was quite sure it would go.
Not that I was wrong!!! It went to Toripakka, but only till Toripakka P and not Toripakka E which is the next stop. At Toripakka P as it turned right instead of left I casually informed to the 2 girls with me that looks like the bus doesn’t go to our stop...the glare I got said it all. Anyway we got off at the next bus stop and thought we would cross the road and take another bus back...only it was some kinda main rood and there was no pedestrian crossing! No jay walking here! So we had to trudge back to the last bus stop…my 2 colleagues with their laptop bags!!!
Just as we were approaching the bus stop I saw No 9 approaching. I ran to flag the bus down...oh yeah that’s the other thing in Oulu – you need to flag down the bus as they will not stop at all stops!!! But I guess he was already in the other lane and so didn’t stop. Immediately behind it was No 1. One day as we waited at the bus stop few days back, an old man struck up a conversation with us. He was waiting for No1 and wanted us to check the number on the bus for him as he wasn’t able to see too well. So I was like…that fella was waiting for this bus, so let’s get on to it.
I was aghast as the bus turned the wrong way again!!! I suggested that we take a round trip on the bus...it has to eventually come back. This way we get to see some more Oulu. Jayanthi gave me such a dirty look. And then started sulking!!! Harsha agreed and so off we went.
I had assumed that the round trip won’t be too long as buses seemed quite frequent at that time. Soon we noticed that we seemed to be going out of town as we were greeted with a signboard – Oulu 6. I thought…ok maybe after some time. Oulu 11, Oulu 15, Oulu 17...my sense of direction ain’t very great but somehow this time I felt I was correct. Every time I thought now he should turn left or right to go back towards Oulu he would take the other direction!!!
I started getting a little psyched. We had been on the bus for quite some time. What if the bus goes to some last stop and there is no return bus today!!! We were definitely NOT in Oulu anymore. So much for adventure!!! Oulu 21...that is it...now I thought that Jayanthi will probably murder me!
By now all the people had got off and we 3 were the only ones on the bus. The driver stopped the bus and turned around and said something in Finnish, which I guessed was...’so where the hell do u wanna go, u seem to be on the bus for a long time’. I said Oulu centre...we seem to have got lost. He gave me such a weird smile and shake of his head and said...OK, I go Oulu centre.
And I heaved a sign of relief!