My experiences with the Red Cross normally is much better. The workers there seem much friendlier and joke around professionally and efficiently. But I was still worried about it all happening on a bus, with the narrow aisle and people bumping into each other and potentially my arm as it dangled into the free space of the walkway.
When the lady got to me to prep my arm with the iodine cleaner, I told her up front that I talk a big game but turn into a baby when the needle comes out and I wince and squirm in pain. This made her laugh, which is a good sign, and then I told her how last time I gave blood (actually not donating blood it was some hack drawing blood for a cholesterol test) the person removed the needle at the end by cracking it like Indiana Joneses whip. So she said she'd be nice to me and as she marked my vein she drew a line, and then another line and a smile under it to make a smiley face.
Looking back, it's fortunate she remembered which "eye" on the smiley face was my vein.
So there was the normal "prick and burn," but it didn't last as long as I remembered it did, and I bled out my pint in quick time and was sent on my happy way with a baggie of pretzels, a can of apple juice, a bumper sticker, and a coupon code to redeem a T-shirt on the internet.
It's not about goodwill towards your fellow man and/or saving lives.
Donating blood is all about the swag!