Friday, June 19, 2015

About Russia's National Day celebrations, and why the traffic in Manila is so bad.



The other night, in Manila living a #Travelife, I spent most of the evening stuck in traffic. It took me over an hour to get from Bonifacio Global City to the Makati CBD, even if the actual distance of this is not even one kilometre perhaps.

Fortunately, my phones were all charged so I spent this time stuck in the car catching up on messages to about two dozen people I owe replies to, and discussing all sorts of things with several groups of people over Facebook Messenger.

Quite a lot of people were online that night, perhaps caught in the rush-hour traffic as well.

Heading to Europe for some fun in the sun
this weekend

"Is it just my imagination, or is Manila traffic just getting worse and worse?" I asked someone, who was online.

"It's really getting worse," he said. "And that's why I'm at home, on my computer in my comfortable room."

Another friend said: "It took me three hours to get home from the airport today."

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http://issuu.com/travelifemag


WHY MANILA'S TRAFFIC IS SO BAD.
THREE REASONS.

Looking out at the traffic that night, I decided there are three major problems to Manila's horrible traffic situation.

First, there is no decent public transportation system that is functioning to a satisfactory level, so anyone and everyone who can afford a car will buy one and use this on the road.

There are simply too many cars vs Manila's road infrastructure, especially as most roads are only two-lane streets.

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TOO MANY POORLY MAINTAINED CARS
ON THE ROAD

Second, as Manila residents will use anything that moves to get from point A to point B  -- and this includes increasingly popular options like Uber and GrabTaxi -- rather than get on the city's barely functioning public transportation system, there are way too many old and poorly-maintained vehicles on the roads.

Many of these break down, causing further traffic chaos.

THE NEED FOR DRIVING ETHICS

Third, driving ethics are non-existent in Manila. 

Drivers switch lanes, hog lanes and cut in at will as it's a situation of "every man for himself." This creates more traffic than most people realise because the smooth flow of vehicles is completely disrupted, leading to a domino effect across the city.

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WHY JAPANESE DRIVERS FOLLOW RULES

In Japan, every driver must undergo a review of driving skills and practices at license renewal every few years. It's a major pain in the neck to do so, as there are zero exemptions and so every single driver must sit through a three-hour lecture, but it ensures that 99% of drivers in Japan follow rules.

Including me. You can't even cut the lecture short saying you have a fever or a stomachache, as you will have to retake the entire lecture if you miss even one minute of it.

This should be done in Manila to ensure that every driver actually knows how to drive properly if he or she hits the streets.

A VERY NICE PARTY
TO CELEBRATE RUSSIA'S NATIONAL DAY

So I got to Russia's National Day at the tail-end, at about 830 PM.

I actually thought the party was over, but I decided to go in and say hello anyway as I'd sat through the traffic all night already. Fortunately it was still going on, and I was able to actually have several very interesting discussions, especially about politics.

And when I next looked at my watch, it was 1030 PM, and definitely time to head back out into Manila's streets, on just another evening in my never-ending, and never-endingly eventful #Travelife. 

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