How Can I Possibly Sleep On This Bus?

Carrie in Our semi-sleeper bus for the trip from Kodaikanal to Ponducherry
Carrie in Our semi-sleeper bus for the trip from Kodaikanal to Ponducherry

Our bus from Kodaikanal to Puducherry was billed as an overnight semi-sleeper, which meant that the seats reclined more than usual but it did not have the sleeper compartments above. As Carrie and I both have long legs, we chose to take the two front seats to avoid another seat reclining into our laps. What we could not have known was that our safe seats would be right next to a door that would open and close at least once an hour or that the one actually needed the seat in front to stop your body from sliding off the chair.

For nearly ten hours we tried to sleep: slipping, sliding, being awakened by everyone who had to ask the driver for a pee break. Everyone once in a while the zzz’s came, but there was no doubt that we would be woken up again shortly. In fact, for a large part of the evening I so slumped down in an effort to not slide further that my back was almost on the actual seat. When we finally arrived at 5:30am we were so happy to be off the bus that the fact that we still had to find a hotel for the night didn’t even phase us.

  • always take the second row
    It is safer

    you can see some of my kodaikanal pictures at
    Best regards

  • Ted

    I took a “sleeper bus” one time from Chennai to Karur. Not semi-sleeper, but full on sleeper. But it certainly didn’t mean sleep would happen. I’m 6’3″ and the berth was about 5’9″, The bus rolled this way and that all night with horn blaring (why couldn’t this have been a non-horn-blaring driver? “Sleeper” buses simply don’t exist there, I’m afraid. “Deluxe” is anything but, and “semi-deluxe” means padded seats!

    Enjoyed discovering your blog.