Friday, October 30, 2009

Riding the Bus - Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Riding the Bus

When we met up with Christie this morning, she suggested that we take the bus, so that I would learn how to use it in case we ever needed to. Sophia was thrilled. We had to walk a bit (about a block) to the bus stop, and we waited quite a while. We can take either bus #4 or #14. We watched quite a few buses stop and load before finally our bus arrived. We got on and someone offered Sophia a seat. I motioned to the money-collector that I was paying for Christie and Sophia, and I handed him 500 Tenge. I got 400 back in change, so that's not bad. 100 Tenge is about 67 cents. I'm pretty sure Sophia is free (we didn't pay for her on the trip to and from church either.)

We rode for a little while, past the pyramid, one of the new architectural structures built to make Astana look like a city of the future. A lot of people got off by the pyramid, and I had a seat too. Then we turned around and arrived at the school, just tiny walk away.

The buses here are not as bad as buses in most other cities I've been in. I mean, they're easy to use. There's a money-collector, who walks around the bus and collects money and gives you a ticket for your money. He/she has change, so you don't have to worry about having exact change. The buses I've been on have been crowded, and have stopped at every stop, so we haven't had to worry about missing our stops. But, most importantly, all the Kazakh people I have met are really friendly, and so it is possible to ask questions and find someone who is able to translate for you.

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