Adventures in Cab Riding

Around Manila
September 3, 2009

manila taxi

Remember how I wrote a month ago about how I had all these amazing taxi experiences.  I guess all good things must come to an end because yesterday I ended up with my first crazy cabbie.  Here’s a play-by-play of our conversation:

Cabbie: Ah, mum, you are beautiful!

Sarah: Oh, sir.  You’re just being kind.  Everyone knows that Filipinos are too nice.  Why should I believe you?

Cabbie: Because I tell the truth.  Are you married?

Sarah: Yes.

Cabbie: How old are you?  Do you have children?  (of course he’d ask that stupid question!)

Sarah: 29 and no.  Do you have children?  (thinking I’d turn the focus towards him with some questioning)

Cabbie: Yes, want to see their pictures?

Sarah: Sure.  (At this point the driver is holding his phone over his shoulder scrolling through pictures while he continues to drive in rush hour traffic.  Then it started to get a bit uncomfortable…)

Cabbie: Want to see a picture of me naked?

Sarah: No thank you sir.  That’s not necessary.

Cabbie: Fine.  Look at this picture then. (he takes it from behind the visor and proceeds to show me a picture of him holding a large gun).  That’s me.  I’m a member of Abu Sayyaf (a local terrorist group).  Ha-ha.  Just kidding.

Sarah: You’re so funny.  (I’m thinking: get me out of here.  At this point I started planning possible escapes if necessary.  I quickly scrawled down the taxi number so I could text it to Nick.  Then I was debating if and when I’d jump out of the cab, should it escalate.  My next tactic was to get him off this subject by diverting his attention).  I bet you know all sorts of things about the Philippines.  What island is your favorite?

This line of engaged questioning combined with vigorous nodding on my part managed to keep him distracted long enough to arrive at my destination.  To my displeasure, he enjoyed our time together so much that he asked if he could drive me again, offering his cell phone number.  Seriously???  Let me tell you, I was relieved to get out of that cab!  Thank goodness our car arrives in 1 week!

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  1. Caroline says:

    I wonder if anyone has ever taken him up on the naked photo opportunity.

  2. chad says:

    You were a bit lucky that your cab driver was crazy. My friend and I once rode a cab in Manila and we saw the driver reading a court order for his HOMICIDE trial. We debated if we stay on the cab or endure the 95 degrees heat… we stayed on the cab. Not all cab drivers in Manila are not that bad, maybe 2 or 3 out of ten are decent. I guess it’s part of the experience and the honeymoon is over.

  3. minnesotagal says:

    Chad- I don’t want to know these things! Not good…. I guess I am feeling thankful now though!

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