Thursday, February 24, 2011
(PICTURE: This is how our driver learned to drive.)
I think all of us have had an experience in a taxi cab in which we feel like we're going to die. Frankly there's a lot of horrible taxi drivers out there who clearly deal with the boredom of their job by taking unnecessary risks while driving. A few months ago Huyen and I had one such driver. The guy drove like a maniac and I feared for my life throughout the cab ride (Huyen didn't because she was asleep the whole ride except when I made her put her seat belt on). I'm not kidding, I was really petrified in the cab and would have told him to stop the car if it wasn't midnight and we weren't on a highway with no chance of getting another cab. Still, we should have gotten out of the cab and walked to where we were going because I was that scared.
Well, last month Huyen and I had an early flight to HCMC, where we were going for our final visa interview. Our flight was at 7AM which meant we got picked up at our apartment at 5AM by a taxi we had ordered the night before. After getting in the cab, Huyen said to me, "This is the same driver we had the other time." "That other time," being the night I thought we were gonna die. So here was the dilemma: Do we get out of the cab and try to get another at 5AM, risking possibly missing our flight? Or do we keep our fingers crossed and hope he's been prescribed chill pills since the last time we drove with him?
We decided to stay in the cab and it was clearly a mistake. Why? Because our cab driver FELL ASLEEP IN THE MIDDLE OF A BUSY INTERSECTION! Thank god he took his foot off the gas because we came to a slow stop rather than plowing into another car or giant truck. Between us yelling at the driver and the surround sound honking, our Cabbie woke up. He was clearly startled although he denied falling asleep. He did though immediately pull over and get an ice tea. We should have gotten out of the cab then and there but it was still 5:15AM and we most likely wouldn't have gotten another cab in time to check in at the airport. Thankfully there was no incident after this because the driver clearly shat his pants and woke up.
After arriving at the airport, Huyen and I both sort of laughed it off and agreed that hopefully that would be the worst part of our trip to HCMC.