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Dear Diary:

1st January 2006  -  A Bumpy Ride

Over the past 7 months I have take all manner of transport. In South America is was mostly coaches that are probably for the most part better than what Australia has to offer and of A coach in Brazilcourse when your in the Amazon, its either fly or get a very slow boat. About the only problem is the time it takes to get from A to B, so I would suggest an I-Pod or similar as a must t The bug in Guyanahelp kill the time. That said, I have taken the odd mini bus through rather muddy roads and as you can see the trips can be ummmmm... interesting!

A kinda Chook busIn Central America the standard form of transport is the good old Chicken bus! Whats a chicken bus? Well if you have ever seen a yellow school bus in a North American movie or perhaps if you imagine the school bus from the "Simpson's" cartoon and that's spot on. Why call it a Chicken Bus? Well you can pretty much Inside a Chicken Bustake any thing you want on board including.... chickens!

Perhaps the most fun thing about the Chook buses is the music. Its very unusual to get a bus that does not pump out reggaeton at a ridiculous number of decibels for hours on end. Have a look at some of these photos and play the audio clip to get an idea of what I mean.

Team Zip heads off!Then again, one of the best rides I had in Central America was by car even if it was full of ALL of the team Zip Tons of room here!!members!. In a perfect work doing it this was is the best. Thanks for the ride Utah!

But all that said and done, its been the last two flights back into the U.S.A. take have offered one of the most annoying moments and one of the more worrying moments. The annoyance come from me going though the security check at Mexico Airport. Unfortunately it seams the case that in Mexico they don't let you take ANY OPENED container with liquid in it through. Needless to say my hip flask that I had just filler with yummy scotch did not fit the bill. I don't know if the Cheers at Mexico Airportguard heard me cry out I'll drink it as he marched it off to the sink, but then again, a full flask in my guts at 7am was perhaps not the bet idea, so I just had a beer instead.

The worry part of my flights was on the Texas to New York sector. By my reckoning we were about 10min out of New York City having been in the air for 3hrs or so. So to see a city below us was expected. Now I usta live in NYC and i have a good sense of direction but I did not recognise the city below me. It was just about then the very soothing voice of our captain came over the speakers to announce that we were over Philadelphia and were about to land there as one of our two jet Only one engine.  Oh Joy!engines had in fact been shut down due to a oil warning light coming on. DOH!

Needless to say the cabin was rather quiet the next 10min or The fire truck and us...so until we finally touched down. I was also glad to be sitting next to the exit row just in case and had a quick double check of the card in the seat.

I don't know if you have ever landed and had lots of fire trucks follow you on the tarmac, but its a tad off putting! Any way, we eventually pulled up at a gate and all got off to await an update of how a full jet of people would be transferred to New York on one of the most full on nights in the sky's.

Checking the Oil!Now I am sure that I could only see one guy with a torch/flash light looking at the right side jet engine of the craft that we had just disembarked. With that, about an We are getting back on guys!hour after getting off, we had our captain come over the gates speakers and announce that we would in fact be re boarding the same craft and carrying on! Needless to say the American guys I had been speaking to who only a few minutes earlier had made the comment/joke "I aint getting back the Death Jet" went a tad quiet.

The flight crew.Any way, to cut a long story short, we re boarded and successfully made the 17min flight on to New York which was just a well as my mate had driven 3hrs to New York City from Albany to pick me up! Tanks to the flight crew!

I think its time for me to get my own car again! HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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