Wednesday, August 19, 2015

About the terrible traffic in Manila, and an African-inspired dinner last night

Dinner with an African theme last night,
in Manila, trying to live a #Travelife...

Last night, in Manila, I was so not living a #Travelife.

The Chaine des Rotisseurs, an international society for the appreciation of fine food and wines, of which I am a member, had organized an African-themed dinner at a restaurant in downtown Manila.

Actually, I thought long and hard about this dinner before saying yes, because the venue was way across the city and my social life in Manila is completely dictated by traffic conditions these days.

On sale everywhere from this week. 
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AN INCREASINGLY UNLIVEABLE CITY

I already spend as little time as possible in this increasingly unliveable city, where a trip from the airport to the CBD can easily take three hours, which is the equivalent of a roundtrip flight from Manila to Hong Kong.

So in the days that I am actually here, I've decided to cut down on work engagements and socials that involve traveling during peak traffic hours or trips across the city.

My life will be confined within ten square kilometers, I've decided, as I'm quite fed up with spending so much time in a car that isn't moving.

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THIS WAS A PROBLEM WITH A SOLUTION

This is a typical problem in a populated city, by the way.

But all this traffic horror might have been preventable had the government maintained and upgraded the public transportation system and the roads in decent condition so that people have a viable option to private cars and the city doesn't come to a standstill each time it rains.

Standard driving rules should also be reviewed and enforced so that drivers don't cut lanes and follow traffic in an orderly manner. 



THE PAIN OF TEN SQUARE KILOMETERS.
AND THEN SOME.

But even within these ten square kilometers, going from point A to B is still a major pain.

Last night, it took a full hour to traverse two kilometers, even by cutting through the Makati villages to avoid the congestion of McKinley Road.

And as I had to actually get to downtown Manila, you can imagine how long the rest of that trip took. I won't even print the number of hours I was on the road on this blog as I am bound to include some fiercely explosive expletives if I do so.

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QUICKER TO FLY TO AFRICA?

Suffice to say, as I sat in my car, albeit in the back seat with my iPad and the music from my favourite radio station for company, I mused how it might have been quicker and far less stressful to actually fly to Africa for an authentic African dinner than to drive across the city of Manila for an African-inspired dinner.

Go figure what's wrong with that equation. 

In the meantime, I'm working really hard in the next few days, within my ten square kilometres, to finish as much work as possible. Sooner rather than later, I'm taking off on another wonderful and unique adventure in my never-ending, and never-endingly eventful #Travelife.

And I can't wait.

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