Thursday, 25 October 2012

INSTANT!!! Day Out - Just Add Water

The Greyhound from Pittsburgh to Buffalo, the next stop on our route through the US, wasn't nearly as comfortable as the Megabus. It's the doddery great uncle of coaches, smelling faintly of wee, desperation and stacked with tall leather seats slick with the sweat of previous passengers. Megabus in comparison, is the bright-eyed and bushy-tailed gadget-savvy teen; vibrantly coloured and roomy with wide skylights and petulant wifi.

We've so far been travelling exclusively on Megabus, buying tickets back in July and August when we could get them for the fabled $1 a ride. But for some reason we had to catch the Grey to Buffalo and it was a piss-poor experience. The driver rarely took breaks leaving us no time for a roadside dinner. The connecting bus at Lake Erie failed to turn up so we were herded onto a bus, some of us baa-ing and moo-ing in indignation, with a different company. It was so full one poor bloke was forced to stand in the aisle for near on an hour until we reached the next stop. It rained the entire day, making each coach humid and uncomfortable. Whingewhingewhine. At one point, the driver braked at a set of red lights and instead of stopping, the bus skidded forwards for a few horrifying seconds on the slick tarmac.

wings from Anchor Bar on the second night
I was just excited to get to Buffalo. Ever since I was handed my first buffalo wing at a dive bar called Turtle Jack's, I fell into hot and spicy lust with this incredible sauce. I love it. So much so that I was given a gallon of it for Christmas last year. It looks pretty toxic - neon orange and the same thickness as Heinz tomato soup, with a lemony spiciness that isn't overpowering but gives food a flavourful kick. It is as fantastical and bold as Tom Selleck's moustache. And now I was going to Buffalo, New York state's second largest city, and the town that gave birth to this condiment dream.
The plan was to gorge on buffalo chicken for the duration of our stay.

It was pretty late when we got to Buffalo bus station. We threw our bags into the back of a cab, dumped our stuff at the hostel and headed right back out in the pouring rain and dodging screaming tramps to sate my hunger for buffalo chicken.

It was all I dreamed it would be. Five BONELESS wings saturated in delicious, spicy sauce accompanied by skin-on fries. Boneless wings. Effortless. They're not like chicken nuggets; these weren't shredded bits of poultry re-lumped together and fried, eyeballs, feet, gristle and all. No siree, pure meaty, white chicken. I'm not a huge fan of eating off the bone - it feels feral and I can never get to all the meat properly because I am hindered by tiny teeth and poor technique. Also I am worried about ingesting marrow even though it is reportedly delicious. What if another chicken needed a bone marrow transplant and I sucked away that chance? I don't really know what I'm talking about here, but my point is, boneless wings are

Food decimated and after a restful night's sleep in an eeriely quiet hostel that had all the fittings and fixtures of a lunatic asylum, we made tracks towards the locality's greatest attraction; the magnificent, marvelous and mighty Niagara Falls. Forty minutes on a local bus dropped us off a couple of minutes away from Rainbow Bridge, just a couple of hundred feet away from the millions of gallons of freshwater that cascades over American cliffs and into Canadian turf.

I don't really know what to say about Niagara Falls. It's Niagara Falls. A lot of water making a hellotta fuss. It's the sheer power of nature that people go to marvel at. The sound of so much water surging off the cliff sounds like a freight train gunning right towards your pathetic, fragile human body. You can get right up to the spray if you're on the US side - there's an elevator in the trunk of the observation deck that you can descend for just one dollar and a set of concrete stairs skirting around the side of the Falls. Cheap day 

You should definitely go and see it for yourself, but if you can't afford the airfare right now, feel free to photoshop yourself into my pictures x

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