Tuesday, April 17, 2007

More on the traffic in Dumaguete

As I mentioned in a previous blog entry,when it comes to driving in Dumaguete,the primary rule seems to be "every man for himself". I've gotten used to the fact that crossing the street here is unlike anywhere else I've ever been......you take your chances. There are no stop signs or traffic lights. You cross the street while traffic is moving and you hope the oncoming driver will stop (or slow down) for you. It's always best to cross when others are attempting to cross. Maybe there is safety in numbers. Given a choice,I'd rather cross at an intersection....at least the drivers are forced to slow down to keep from crashing into other tricycles.

I feel more comfortable crossing one way streets like Perdices. You only have to look in one direction as you dash across.

I thought that I had seen everything when it comes to driving here, but yesterday evening,after buying a few groceries,we left the super market at Lee Plaza to take a tricycle to the terminal and I witnessed something I thought I would never see in this city. Behind us, I saw a Dumaguete traffic control officer (yes, they do exist) giving a ticket to a tricycle driver. This was not the first time I'd seen a traffic officer but it was the first time I'd ever seen one do anything. The most puzzling thing to me is just what the driver's offense could have been. How can someone break a traffic regulation in a city that doesn't seem to have any such regulations?

Perhaps the ticket wasn't for a driving offense,per se. I think, maybe the driver did not have the proper tag or permit. Like everywhere else in the world, Dumaguete has it's share of government officials looking to make a dollar (or peso, in this case). The traffic police may not be able to stop the insane driving,but they might be able to enforce a tag or license regulation. As it's often said - if you want to know why something is the way it is, you only have to follow the money.

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