Drunk and sleepy on the Buses

london night bus

london night bus

So I got invited to a particularly posh awards to do in beautiful London town the other day. The usual free champagne, wine and beer flowed all night long and by 11 o’clock the night is going well (or so I thought) I decide to meet up with some friends around Liverpool street… and the next thing I know I am asleep on a night bus and it is 3am.

How did this happen, well quite obvious really, I got on and fell asleep.

Now most people who live in London will know that a London night can be particularly chilly at the best of times so the comfort and the warmth of a bus came as a huge relief and surprise when I first awoke from my slumber. The emptiness of the bus was also appealing to my inebriated self, so instead of getting off and hailing the nearest black cab and going home as any sober person would have done, I simply went back to my ZZZs.

Now buses do come to the end of their line eventually so when I was turfed off I can recall simply hoping on the next one that came along, oyster card in hand and finding a new corner to snooze in. Where the bus was going or where I picked it up from I do not recall or indeed do I care, but the warmth and cosiness of that seat once more led to me having a good hours snooze or so.

Soon after I was given orders by the driver to leave my seat with a depot fast approaching and once more a new bus was quickly located. Tactics began to be formed, as I headed back towards central London from where I think was the Finchely area.

I managed to time my journey on the final bus of the night as it arrived in Trafalgar Square at 5.30am and as the pigeons looked on in slight confusion and suspicion of this man still wearing a tuxedo from the night before I hopped on my first train back to my non moving home. Just in time for a few more hours sleep before jaunting back in to work as fresh as a daisy (that might be a slight fib).

So the next time you find yourself stranded with the final tube gone and no money for a cab, look for the nearest double-decker and get yourself the comfortable cheap alternative to a dodgy B&B.

This may shine a certain light on my person, as someone who A. enjoys a good hearty drink and B. doesn’t really care about what other people think.
Indeed I may easily offend or disgust you with the above revelations, but I say there are loads more people like me out there in the city and aren’t we the most interesting…I’ll let you decide that!

10 Comments so far

  1. frazgo on August 13th, 2008 @ 10:02 pm

    Dude, that was an absolutely priceless post. I never understood being able to sleep on a bus with all the stops either. I still saw more than a few sleeping even mid-day so go figure that one out if you can. (I gety our way every few years, London is one of our favorite cities to visit).

  2. Mack Reed (mackreed) on August 13th, 2008 @ 11:07 pm


    I had an excellent Night Bus trip the night before we left town, a fast route home after missing the last train out of London Bridge – although the leadfooted driver felt more like Harry Potter’s version of the Night Bus, and we basically lurched from stop to stop to stop at Indianapolis 500 speeds.

    Excellent photo, BTW. Is that yours?

  3. clarue on August 13th, 2008 @ 11:29 pm

    Yeah love the picture, but can’t claim it as mine!

    The guys who drive those night buses should all be given medals, they put up with all sorts of stuff.

  4. padster on August 14th, 2008 @ 10:03 am

    Top marks.

  5. padster on August 14th, 2008 @ 10:15 am

    Er, no, what I meant to say was "Binge Drinking! We’re a nation gone mad! This has Got To Stop!!!"

    Were you carrying a knife?

  6. clarue on August 14th, 2008 @ 10:35 am

    With such blinkered views as those you must be a Daily Mail or Sun reader?

    I couldn’t fit my machete in the inside pocket of my suit jacket.

  7. Julia Frey (lajulia) on August 14th, 2008 @ 2:45 pm

    The vision of you in a tux snoozing away on a night bus would have kept me awake trying to figure out who you were and why were you there. (well, I can’t sleep sitting up anyway…)

  8. pingu on August 15th, 2008 @ 9:29 am

    I think night buses are vastly underrated. And their drivers are veritable saints – usually I find bus drivers to be some of the most miserable, moody people in this city (save the lady working in the McDonald’s near to my work). But night bus drivers, especially if you’re a lone female like myself, are friendly, helpful, and always re-open the doors for you if you’re running. Maybe it’s my mildly inane smile when I’m a bit tiddly though… A couple of weekends ago, I saw my first sunrise on a night bus. Now that’s something worth staying awake for ;)

  9. Daneeta Loretta (daneeta) on August 16th, 2008 @ 2:50 pm

    I only ride buses unless forced onto the tube. I find the sleeping boozer so much less offensive than the loud gaggle of teenaged girls playing horrible songs on their mobile speakers and screaming faak this and faak that. Free champagne? Free. Night bus on the Oyster Card? 90p. Night bus as an alternative to a dodgey B&B? Priceless.

  10. saint on August 28th, 2008 @ 9:23 pm

    an awesome experience to experience.

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