Stuck in a moment with you
…isn’t quite what you’d like to be singing to your taxi driver, but as Kipp finds out when you’re using public transport in the UAE, the most improbable things do happen.
August 2, 2011 2:49 by Eva Fernandes
Yesterday evening, Kipp was in a hurry to get out of Dubai Media City (as one generally tends to be after a day at work). And because we had a pressing appointment to keep at Dubai Mall, we chose to cab our way to our destination than using the metro as we normally do. Getting a cab at rush hour is something of a nightmare, but thankfully not during Ramadan…we flagged down a taxi without much difficulty.
As it was just about to get on to Sheikh Zayed road, the car shook and we heard an awful “thud.” Hoping against hope this was a figment of our imagination, we looked out of the window to see cars whizzing past us on either side at 120 kmph: “Yikes,” we thought, “wouldn’t want to get stranded out here”. But the car wasn’t moving along confidently. It wasn’t long before our taxi driver pulled over to the hard shoulder on the right of Sheikh Zayed Road and popped out for an inspection.
As soon as he began to nod his head ominously, we knew it was going to be bad news.
He came back into the car and said we’ll have to get a different cab, he needed to change his front tire. “Get out? Here?” we asked. He was obstinate. There was nothing to be said about it, so out we got of the taxi only to find ourselves right in the middle of Sheikh Zayed Road, just a little before Exit 32, with whizzing cars to the left and to the right of us. No pavements in sight, the nearest metro station a good twenty-minute walk away and nothing else to do but stand very still in our spot and hope that no flying shards of glass or plastic come hurling our way.
At this point, the taxi driver who had forced us out of his cab, approached with the receipt for our journey thus far. Now stranded in the middle of Sheikh Zayed Road, Kipp didn’t really give too much thought to it, we just paid the man, eager to get into the next taxi available. But now that we think about it, what exactly is protocol? Does one pay the taxi driver, even if he’s left you stranded on a highway and hasn’t offered to call for a back-up taxi? Then again, it isn’t exactly his fault the tire went bust, and he did transport you thus far.
What, dear readers, do you think should be done in such situations?