2014 is the year of the bus. 22 June is the morning after the solstice. Together they seemed to make a good time to try some night bus flannage - flan 1c.
I've tried to make a map but google maps decided to delete my stop markers and was generally being irritating. Flickr doesn't recognise my password, sent me a nonsense email when I reset it, has the world's worse captcha and is also being very un-user friendly.
I tried to stick to the instructions as much as possible as it makes it more interesting.
- Choose a number (n) between 3 and 20.
- Get on the first bus that comes along (and that you're able to get onto).
- Get off the bus at the nth stop. If the route terminates before you've gone n stops, then just get off at the terminal stop. [Alternative to this step: if you can see in advance that the nth stop doesn't serve any other routes, you can stay on until you get to one that does.]
- Get on the next bus that stops at this stop.
- Repeat the two steps above until you're in an area of your city you're not familiar with, or until you've been on 5 different buses, or until you're bored of waiting at bus stops.
- Navigate your way home by a method of your choice.
I used www.random.org
to generate a number between 1 and 18 and added 2 to it to make a number between 3 and 20. This made n=8.
I had a coffee in a local late night kebab shop then set off -( coffee )
1. 4.40am. East Street/Walworth Road. 12 to Oxford Circus
2. 4.53am Stop D St Thomas' Hospital/County Hall. This is where I started my flannage last year!( westminster )
3. 4.55am N109 to Oxford Circus
. Only 7 stops to terminus.
4. 5.03am bus terminated at a stand, AP Oxford Circus. No buses leave from here.
5. 5.05am Walked to the first stop I could find - OV John Lewis'. No shopping on Oxford Street at this time! N113 to Edgware.
6. 5.17am stop N - Park Road/Lords Cricket Ground
7. 5.20am N13 to North Finchley
8. 5.25am Finchley Road O2 Centre
This is where it went wrong. The next bus was the same as the one I'd got off and was 14 minutes away! Should I wait and do another 8 stops? A large group of drunken people turned up so I decided to cross the road and go back. ( No go )
9. 5.37am 82 to Victoria
. First bus of the day! It follows the exact same route as the N13 so I went back to the same stop - Park Road/Lords Cricket Ground. I got off a stop early to take photos.( churchyard )
Churchyard (closed until 9am)( mosque )
London Central Mosque
10. 5 trips done, but what now? Another hop.
11. 5.57am 13 to Aldwych
. It follows the same route so 8 stops sends me back to Oxford Circus.( Year of the Bus )
It's the Year of the Bus! Regent Street will be closed from 9am for a bus cavalcade.
12. 6.10am 23 to Liverpool Street
13. 6.22am Royal Courts of Justice. Alight here for the London School of Economics.
This bus was busy - lots of people with suitcases, the traffic had increased and I couldn't sit down. It seemed like a good place to stop.
This was fun, but bus arteries made it less fun than it could have been. I don't know St John's Wood at all so it was nice taking photos there. Travelling through London when there's no traffic is great!