I cannot start to express how much I do not respect taxi drivers. Yes, they take brunt of being responsible for some 16 million commuters on a weekly basis, but how do we even begin to justify the manner in which these commuters are transported? How refreshing would it be to WANT to leave one’s car at home over the weekend on the regular and utilise a public transport form instead? Truth is – by the time most commuters can afford to no longer use a taxi they breathe an eternal sigh of relief. They are also highly unlikely to revisit that avenue if they can help it.
Now, my biggest issue with the South African Taxi Organisations, which we’ll call SATO for this exercise, is that they don’t contribute towards the tax revenue of this country. Okay, I lie – they do, but like any cash business – how do YOU know if they don’t make 6 times what they declare? Anyway, that’s another topic altogether. Let me get into the heart of my gripe – red robots, speeding, poor condition of the vehicles, barrier line overtaking, tricks to avoid stand-still traffic… Now, I am generally not bothered by this because I’ve used taxis for much of my life. I KNOW how impatient the passengers are. This IS Gauteng and we’re all always in a rush. Very bizarre, but admittedly true. Well, if you’ve experienced any of this ‘horrendous’ driving I’m talking about then I have to ask – have you ever witnessed motorcycles on our roads and wondered – “Are taxi drivers and motorcyclists cut form the same cloth?”
There isn’t a single way in which I can differentiate between them – all are in a rush, they feel they own the road and have an incredible sense of entitlement. “Look at me. Why did you not see me? Let’s get off/out of our vehicles and battle it out then!”
It’s a damn shame. On a lighter side – I love witnessing quarrels between the two. Much like sibling rivalry. Truly one and the same.
Quite the sight.