This is my 30 day challenge: Take time out to do what I love, make positive changes, be challenged, grow and rediscover myself.
The first time I took a taxi on my own, everyone freaked out.
“Don’t do it!”
“You can’t trust them, they might take you somewhere else…”
It surprised me, learning the opinion locals have of the men people entrust their lives to every day. Still, it’s probably equivalent to getting into the car of a stranger and we’re taught never to do that. For one thing, getting in a taxi over here is a little bit of hit and miss.
Sometimes you get a nice pleasant fellow who drives patiently and carefully.
More often than not, you get someone who’s in a rush to send you to hell with foot plastered to the pedal and palm glued to the horn, blasting at cars, pedestrians, dogs and thin air. They leave you digging your claws into your seat like a falling feline and adrenaline floods your veins as you kick into fight or flight mode. You’re tempted to throw up your arms and scream as if it’s a roller coaster, but it’s probably safer to take your airplane safety positions and press your arms to the seat in front of you and then your head against your arms.
Last night, the taxi ran a red and was pulled over by a patrol officer. A bit of polite banter flew out the window, but the officer gave him a stern glare and asked for a driver’s licence.
After an embarrassed laugh and lots of shuffling, as if the driver is flipping through a stack of cards, he passes a little red card holder, which I assume is holding his licence, out the window. The officer takes it and walks away, then five seconds later turns around and hands the red card holder back and waves him off. The driver chuckles nervously and after a few questions he explains how he’d just slipped some money in along with his licence. The officer took the money and let him off.
I was shocked.
With a shrug, the driver explained it’d cost him more time and money if he didn’t. They’d take his licence there and then and he would spend a whole day at some office trying to claim it back and paying a exorbitant fine. So the best he can do is pay off the officer. It’s almost expected over here.
It makes it clear why the locals have the opinion you can’t trust taxi drivers. I mean, if you can’t even trust the people who are expected to uphold law and justice over here, why would you trust the ones without the label?