PATOK Part 3: It’s more fun riding a Jeepney…


…and not get shot.

Jeepney drivers pass down the trade to their young apprentices at night – less traffic, less passengers, less MMDA and police. Early in the training, they accompany the youths, acting as conductors/barkers so the Padawan can practice driving. Problem is, these kids have seen all six of Vin Diesel’s car movies and I’m not quite sure if they all have their licenses yet.

The day will come when they are trusted to drive by themselves, often accompanied by a fellow youngster who may be dreaming of drifting a jeep down Antipolo someday.

On my way to work, the jeepney cut in front of a car (I didn’t see the make and model) right in front of one of those “executive villages” along Imelda Avenue. I think the jeep made a scratch or dent on that car. So Mr. ExecutiveVillage yelled at Mr.JeepneyDriver through his window. Both vehicles pulled over.

Mr. ExecutiveVillage got down from his car and confronted Mr.JeepneyDriver, complete with all the expletives drivers reserve for such an occasion. Mr.JeepneyDriver tried to apologize profusely. Threats of police, threats of filing a case, blah blah blah.

And then Jeepney Driver started weeping. This ticked off Mr.ExecutiveVillage even more! “Anong iniiyak-iyak mo diyan?” he thundered.

I stayed put thinking “This gon’ be gooood!”

I changed my mind about this live telenovela unfolding before my eyes when the threats of cops turned to threats of guns. “I’m shaking right now!” That’s ExecutiveVillage-speak for “I’m so angry, I’m losing control.”

That was my cue. Exit, Stage Left. I hopped off and stood in the curb waiting for another Jeepney to take me to work.

Did I mention I had bandages around my right arm? Oh yes, my injuries seem to have a special connection with funny jeepney incidents. I was diagnosed with RSI (repetitive strain injury) to my right thumb and wrist. Look it up in Google if you have time. The doctor put my hand in a splint, immobilizing it to a constant thumbs-up sign.

So picture a prim-looking lady in glasses, heels and a pencil skirt, with bandages around her arm, laughing her ass off on the curb, hailing another jeep to work at 8PM. Thumbs up!

I’m not sure if they can tell but I gave the two drivers a big smile and a thumbs-up as I rode away on the next jeepney.

I got to work unscathed and highly entertained. Two Thumbs up!

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