Monday, February 7, 2011

A Cab Passenger's Letter

Dear cab drivers,

First of all, this is not to insult you or make you look bad. This is just an expression of how fed up I am with how I am treated everytime I ride a cab. Secondly, this is not all bad. I've had my fair share of really kind drivers but most of you guys treat me like "pffft! stupid passenger." We can all reflect on this. So please listen and read carefully.

I just got out of a cab in a foul mood this morning. It was raining hard from where I was from and the best way to get home dry was to ride a cab. With the flag down rate increased, my friends and I thought that it was better to just ride one cab and get off where our stop was - my friends' stops were along the way, anyway. Everything was cool until we dropped two of my friends in BTC. After the short but very hard rain, the water was a rushing river on the street and one of my friends needed to be get off where, of course, there wasn't any water. Mr. 0550 let out a modulated "tsk" when he stopped the first time. When my friend asked if he could stop somewhere with less flowing water. Mr. 0550 gave out a second "tsk!" I mean, come on, man! And so as gay as I was with my other passenger friend, we said, "Na.ukosh na! Tua rah." and with a light sarcasm added, "Salamat Nong," for dropping my friend off.

I expected A.S Fortuna Street to be flooded in the low areas. When I saw the first pool at Rolling Hills, I asked the driver, "Kaya ra nimo dinhi manong?" Mr. 0550 gave a disgruntled murmur. This might sound defensive but I asked very politely if he could cross the flooded street so we can go the other way. So on we went until after we crossed two flooded areas on the same street. My friend, Venus and I were talking until we reached the foot of the old bridge. I started to wonder why he was speeding up straight when he was supposed to turn right. By the way, once we got in the cab, I told him where we were going. Going back to to the crossing, I told him, "Liko ta, Manong." I was under the impression that he was already steaming because it took him time to signal to the right and turn the steering wheel. He then let out his third "TSK!" and scratched his baldness again. This time, I was really taken aback by his behavior. I was less than 2 minutes away from my house and didn't want to stay in the cab any longer. I couldn't afford to hear a louder "tsk!" from him so I got off the cab in my fabulous heels with my friend. After Mr. 0550 made a u-turn back to the city, he looked back at us as if he were saying, "stupid bitches." I gave out a stupefied ugh then walked half a kilometer to my house.

Fisrt question: Why would Mr. 0550 act like that? He should've anticipated some of those things to happen.
Second question: Did i do anything wrong?
Third question: Was Mr. 0550 irritated because there were four of us passengers and his taxi meter's flag down rate was still at Php30? lol!

I am addressing this to all cab drivers because what I experienced should not happen to others. I perfectly understand that you also want a hassle-free passenger and a smooth sailing drive to our destination so you should also learn how to give good customer service. Don't think that I don't respect you. In fact, cab drivers are in my bucket list of most respected jobs and people. I understand that you also want to earn. Well, I also want to save money. You call on me to ride in your cab, I get in, you drive me to where I'm going, I pay you, get off then you leave. I appreciate other drivers though who greet me a good day or say thank you after I pay the fare; or those who lower the volume on the radio when I'm on a call or those who do small talk but I don't expect all of you to do that. I respect you so you also need to respect me. Besides the increase in the taxi fare, this kind of situation adds to one of the reasons why I feel hesitant to ride a cab.

Therefore, I show you my CAB RIDE WISH LIST:
1. a greeting
2. a thank you
3. the exact change
4. speed of not less that 40kph but not more than 70kph;
5. if you don't know the way, ask me politely
6. if you need to stop for gas, ask me politely
7. if you don't want me to drop friends off, tell me and don't make friggin' tantrums
8. you are free to listen to whatever radio station you like as long as it's not too loud
9. you may NOT cross a solid line (there's no need to hurry unless there's an emergency - which means I'm late)
10. you shall follow ALL traffic signs

Thank you.