When I was 21, I took a bus from England to Ireland. The bus took a ferry, of course, over the Irish Sea, but it was essentially a 20 hour bus ride in the dead of winter that I do not recommend. My boyfriend’s mother loaded me up with sandwiches and chocolate bars for the trip, which helped to pass some time, but it was truly the longest 20 hours I have ever spent. It was exciting to travel through parts of England and Whales, but it might have been more fun if I was not traveling alone. I sat silently in my seat at the far back of the bus, freezing my ass off, while other travelers actually lay down in the isle to try and get a more comfortable rest.
The ferry part was quite cool as it seemed more like a ship with restaurants, a movie theater and sleeper chairs spread throughout. The winds were dastardly at the crossing, however, and I became unusually seasick. I opted to see Point Break again in the ferry theater to help distract me, even though I did not like it the first time I saw it.
Finally getting to Ireland was remarkable, as we landed in County Cork, where my ancestors are from. All that green landscape felt good as the bus barreled down an old country road.
I stayed in a youth hostel and spent the days traveling around to castles and pubs with a pen pal I had met up with. It was a long time ago, so I do not recall too much other than spending New Years in an Irish pub drinking my first Guinness, kissing the Blarney stone, having people remark on my accent, while I could barely understand anyone else, and getting yelled at by the hostel caretaker for oversleeping before I paid for the next day.
Upon the 20 hour, equally difficult journey back to England, we had a stop over somewhere in Whales. They had a funny photo booth where you could insert an image of yourself into any scene. I chose to place myself in a hot car with a hot lady. This image will always remind me to pay the extra $100 to fly next time.