In case you have ever thought, “What does a typical bus ride for Mercyhurst field hockey players entail?” I will enlighten you. On the day of departure, we typically leave in the afternoon during practice time because at that time no one will be missing any class. Almost every year, I have ended up having class right up until practice time, so I end up having to run to the bus. At least, it feels that way because if you are on time, you are actually late. Most times, I pack for away trips the day before we leave or the morning of departure which helps to cut down on forgetting things I need. Here is a list of things that remind myself to bring: my pillow pet and blanket to sleep on the bus, a sweatshirt and sweatpants in case it is cold on the bus, shower stuff for after the game, a change of clothes to sleep in, homework because I have to study, headphones to focus, chargers for my laptop and phone, movies to watch, and last but not least my field hockey gear. A quick side note: Mercyhurst has recently acquired their own buses which all have outlets on them, and now I do not have to worry about my electronics dying on me.
If you are not aware, our bus ride length probably averages around 6 hours a trip which tends to get monotonous when you are away every weekend. Most times before the bus leaves, I grab food to-go from the Laker (which is one of Mercyhurst’s dining options for those of you who don’t know). Picking a seat on the bus is like picking a seat for class. On the first day you can sit anywhere, but after that you are stuck with that chosen seat until the end of the semester. Likewise, you choose your seat on the first bus trip, but after that everyone tends to stay with the same seat.
Once we have begun our journey to the other side of the state, most players tend to drift off into the magical dream world. Usually, I fall asleep for an hour and then I naturally wake up. If the movie that is playing happens to be a good one, then I finish watching the movie. If I happen to not care for it, then I attempt to be productive and get some homework done. Some of the classic movies we watch on the bus include: Love and Basketball, Sweet Home Alabama, Remember the Titians, Miracle, Frozen, Parent Trap, and Invictus. The majority of the time, we watch three movies before we reach our hotel for the night. Once we arrive, we get our stuff together as Coach calls out rooming arrangements. As soon as we are ready, we sprint to our rooms, so we can sleep in a nice queen bed.