07 November 2006

Driving, the Russian way

I have mentioned about the traffic before that it is constantly jammed and although the cars and gas are underpriced, you simply cannot drive.

But like in every aspect of life, Russia continues to surprise me everyday in traffic. Being a loyal passenger of the notorious metro, I don't usually witness the atrocities of the Russian drivers but have seen them invading the pavements with their huge Hummers and big SUVs. A friend of mine told me that during a very heavy traffic jam, a clever driver decided to "jump" to the pavement and drove on unnoticing the walking pedestrians. A lot of people just ran away from the course of this madman; but one stood (just as the Chinese student stood facing the tanks in Tienanmen Square). So what would be expected from a civilized driver in this instance? (Actually no civilized person would drive in a pavement anyway)...stop and give way to the pedestrian? No of course! we are in Russia! The driver got out of his car and started beating the obstructing pedestrian...Welcome to the jungle baby!

Another thing that really amazed me is the Russians affinity to buy huge (and sometimes enormous) SUVs. Knowing that the city roads are constantly cleared out of snow, the drivers just need to change their tyres to survive the Russian winter at all. So driving SUVs is not of practical value; but an expensive add-on to your charisma...May God help the ones who need it (and here is a warm greeting to those people who stick "Because I have a small penis" stickers (in russian) to the back of these cars) Very creative indeed...

There is a Hummer graveyard in Moscow.

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