It’s almost noon on a spring Friday, and the oldish fellow on the bus seat next to me is furiously working on a math problem the old school way — on paper. He’s oblivious to the activity around him: across the aisle, a young woman not always using her headphones is watching a movie on her laptop, and an old woman next to her, with a half-eaten banana on her lap, is napping. A man nearby is overheard promoting his online costume jewelry company, and he’s passing out business cards.
I’m trying in vain to get on the Internet, because Wi-Fi is available. Everyone seems comfy on Megabus, a double-decker luxury bus headed to Dallas. Every seat, 77 of them, is taken. I just left Austin from the departing point, a lot on a side street near Guadalupe Street and Martin Luther King Boulevard on the University of Texas campus. My one-way ticket cost $3 plus a 50-cent booking fee. Awesome. Others paid between $1 and about $25 for their fares, depending on when they made their online reservations on www.megabus.com. The earlier the purchase, the cheaper the fare. That’s how it works on megabus.com.
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