Watch this video from YouTube and you’d understand why I think I will never drive in Jakarta.
How bout a more serious look at it?
Oh don’t get me wrong, I did learned eons ago – with stick nonetheless! Even got myself a driver’s license right after I finished my short driving course without a test or anything – yes people, that’s how we roll here. Money talks! BUT I failed my father’s high standards of defensive safety driving. It’s a long story but let’s just say that out of three kids my father have, only one passed his standard and deemed the one that has became his successor.
So, my driver’s license faced its slow death by hiding in my purse for about 5 years and I never get behind wheels again.
In the States, I don’t drive so yeah that was lame.
Back in Jakarta with these kinds of traffic, no matter how much I wish I can drive, I’m afraid it would end up ugly.
Sitting in the passenger seat alone is enough to make me all worked up seeing how crazy motorbikes are around Jakarta’s traffic. So I’m afraid if I’m driving I’d be so tempted to just run them all over.
In the past couple of weeks since I’m back to work and with my father returning to South Africa, I’ve been riding motorbikes with my youngest brother every morning. He would drop me off and I’d catch a taxi or hitch a ride with one of the guys from work.
As much as I’d like to think that I have a brave soul, sitting on a motorbike makes me nervous now. Not so much because I worry that my brother is a lousy driver – no he’s very careful and doesn’t do the crazy zigzagging like the other drivers. I’m more nervous about the hundreds – if not millions – motorbikes who doesn’t seem to have brakes at all!
For example, my father’s car was hit by a motorbike so badly a couple of months ago when he tried to turn right into our housing complex while another car is making an exit turn left, so it was a blind spot. Out of the blue wham… a motorbike who never bother to hit the break smashed, ripped the back tire of the car and dent the left front door. In a city like Jakarta, no matter what happened, the car will always get blamed for. Sucks big time!
My father was OK, the car not so much! Big huge dent on the left door, so big that we had to replace the whole door and got a new tire. The two people in the motorbike? They got minor scratches and ended up asking for money to go to the hospital. Insane? Yes!
Back to my daily rides with Danny – my brother – I’m just scared he would get pissed and punch some careless driver like he did awhile back when he just started working. I could not possibly make this up. Actually I was laughing my ass off when I heard about what happened.
Someone stupidly cut right in front of him while he had a blinker to turn left. Granted, the two motorbikes collided – not too bad I guess – but bad enough to make my brother left his motorbike and punch the other driver on the face.
Seriously I hate, hate, hate the traffic here. If there weren’t as many motorbikes as it is today, I would probably love driving around Jakarta.