i took two hours to pack my luggage, not because it takes two hours, but because i streeeeeetched packing for as long as i could. not having Ravi around has finally taken its toll on me and i need to keep my mind and hands busy.
went to Paul’s, a patisserie, for medium-well beef tenderloin, baby potatoes, sauteed mushrooms, steamed carrots, whole beans and a chocolate milkshake. bought a beautiful vanilla custard pastry thingy which saw me glamorously scrapping every last glob of vanilla off the takeaway box and slurping loudly, 12 pieces of madeleines in case our friend i’m picking up from the airport is hungry at 0600, a chocolate cake to greet Ravi with when i see him in Abu Dhabi later.
it was OK at Paul’s for a while, then i was miserable, then numb. Ravi and i go to Paul’s a lot. suddenly the Paris Interiors coffeetable book i was flipping through was just not interesting enough. at the taxi queue, it was obvious i was gonna wait at least 30 minutes. if my heels were not cutting into my pinkies, i would have chosen to walk the 30 minutes home. at Burjuman Mall, cabs are plentiful between 1800 – 2100, but after that, somehow, all the cabs disappear ala Singapore style come midnight once the midnight surcharge comes into effect. the line was long, with at least 15 people in front of me.
only in Dubai, can you see people drive to the cabstand in their private cars and offer a ride to passengers willing to pay the fee and the price. when i say price, i don’t just mean the fee itself, i mean the risk of being uninsured in someone else’s car should something happen to you, the risk of being held at knifepoint and robbed blind, or worse, raped and left somewhere in the desert.
i’d rather die in a licensed, insured cab.
after 30 minutes, a girl 6 people behind me marched up to the security guard of the mall and started bitching like only half-brained shit can.
- why complain about the 20 minutes you’ve waited for a taxi when you could have easily called for a cab and pay the extra reservation fee? we’ve all waited longer than you have, sweetheart.
- why are you screaming at the guard about people standing outside the line waiting for illegal cabs, bitching about how these people are getting cabs faster than those in line are? we are all in line because honeybuns, we are waiting for licensed cabs. if you wanna scoot off, you are welcome to step outside the line and open yourself up to the risk of getting your tight red top ripped off of you by an illegal cabbie because he too just can’t stand how bitchy you are in the cab. the guard can’t manage people waiting for illegal cabs because hmmm, it’s fuckin’ illegal, you dumbfuck.
after Her Tightassness made such an embarrassing ruckus, she stomped back in line. oh my wonderful tooshies, please, oh please, if you feel like bullying someone, belittling someone who’s bringing home minimum wage to feed his family back home in India or Pakistan, just fucking kill some roaches. i don’t know what your parents taught you, that being miserable is not such a bad idea.
oh, and what a pout.
40 minutes, and finally, i was at the front of the queue. in Singapore, i would never have waited, but i was just so pleased to get out of the house into cool, dry wind, that standing poised for 40 minutes, breathing in occasional car fumes, the runaway cigarette smoke and fresh air was just too refreshing to pass up.
when i saw the lit yellow TAXI sign, i was relieved. but that was short-lived. when i say i’d rather die in a licensed, insured cab, i didn’t mean i actually want to die. out of 10 cabs i take here, 8 will speed and swerve between lanes, and worse, 9 will make phonecalls or take calls without handsfree sets with one hand on the steering wheel and a happy heavy foot on the accelerator while swerving between lanes.
and i thought, “oh God, i just don’t want to die right now, we’re only 10 minutes away.”
some don’t even wear seatbelts. i’m not sure if they’re worried about how their families back in Pakistan, Iran or India will survive if they die in an avoidable car accident. i know one thing for sure though, a lot of these bad habits were brought here from back home, but this doesn’t mean the local authorities can’t change this with education, awareness and reinforcement.
some people roll their eyes when i’m anal about seatbelts.
i don’t mind if they scoff at me the times i request specifically for a driver with a car which has working seatbelts. if i can help it, i’d like to die on my own terms, not flying through a windscreen and smashing my innards all over the road.