Olympic-size road trip

Sherry Martell
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Shubenacadie resident behind the wheel of tour bus en route to Vancouver

SHUBENACADIE - Glenna Andrews is putting pedal to the medal heading West with a convoy of six tour buses set to arrive just in time for the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.
The Shubenacadie resident and Ambassatour Greyline motor coach operator is driving her home-away-from-home on an exciting coast-to-coast adventure, loving every minute of her time on the open road.
"Oh my goodness, you get to sit in the best seat, look out the big front windows, and you get to be there first," said Andrews, explaining some of the perks of her most favourite job ever. "I really like working with the public. I like to go places and do things. I like to be in the front seat, driving the bus."
She has been in the driver's seat since 2006, after spending nine years working in a Truro-based carpet-manufacturing factory.
More than 20 years ago she had completed a straight-truck driving course, but didn't realize her dream to drive a bus until many years later.
"I knew I wanted to drive from the time I was six," she said. "I just had to wait for life to happen all around me and give me room so I could say, 'Now I'm going to do what I want.'"
Andrews and her colleagues set out on the cross-Canada journey on Jan. 22, and anticipates arriving in Vancouver today. She said 13 tour buses in total from Ambassatours are making tracks for the Olympic host city.
"We're taking buses from Halifax out to Vancouver and they will dispatch us how they see fit when we get there," she told the Truro Daily News, during a brief rest stop in Strathmore, Alta., on Thursday.
She said they will only have a couple of days to familiarize themselves with the city and will learn their assignments before the Games begin.
"I don't expect to see any of the Olympics, I really don't," said the operator. "I was interested in having six weeks of work. A week to drive out or better and a week to drive back and we'll be doing shuttles of some sort once we are there."
She said every day is different in the driver's seat of a tour bus and has transported all kinds of passengers from vacationers to famous rock stars and celebrities.
While in Vancouver, she is hoping to meet people from all over the world as they climb onto her ride.
"I expect it to be totally interesting out there because there will be so many people that have gone out there just to be there, and then of course there is a whole whack of us drivers out there," said Andrews.
She said as far as she is concerned nothing compares to seeing the countryside through the bus windshield on her trek across the nation.
"I'm just wide-eyed and taking it all in," said the operator.

Organizations: Cross-Canada, Truro Daily News

Geographic location: Vancouver, Shubenacadie, Halifax Strathmore

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