Night Travels During Holiday Seasons 2011 - 15th Eve

As the  "Simbang Gabi" or Evening Mass started on the 16th of December, I thought I should also chronicle my night travel experiences during this season. Because for the whole month of December 2011, I am on swing shift, that is I start work at 2pm and finish at 11pm. By the time I am home, it's past 1am.

On the evening of the 15th, I know a lot of people cannot contain their anticipation for the start of Simbang Gabi that would start mostly on the morning of the 16th, as early as 4am. There are too many people on the road even at 11:45pm. Many just finished their Christmas parties so most of the people on the road have one or two wrapped presents with them. Few buses are running and passengers are crowding inside the packed buses. My officemate Genne and I were lucky enough to get seated when we took our bus from Ayala to Baclaran around 12 midnight.

In Baclaran, there's more people waiting for public transportation. I took a jeep for DBB-C or Dasmarinas, Cavite since the buses are packed and I don't want to stand for an hour for the sake of air conditioning. Luckily, the jeepney driver didn't wait to have a full jeep before leaving Baclaran. There were just 14 passengers on his 20-seater jeepney.

I didn't notice anything wrong with the jeepney until we were past the Aguinaldo Boulevard (also called Aguinaldo Expressway). All of a sudden, the jeepney stopped and the driver went underneath to fix something. He stayed there for well over 15 minutes before coming back up and trying to start the jeepney. The clutch didn't work so he went under again. Another 5 minutes passed and he came back and finally we moved on. My fellow passengers were quite nervous something is not right and the jeep is not safe. 500 meters later, he stopped once again and went under to fix it. A pretty Filipina with her handsome caucasian boyfriend decided to transfer rather than wait for the driver to fix the jeep.

After another 5 minutes or more, the driver came back and we moved on along until we reached a gas station in Talaba, Bacoor. The driver, while getting gas into the jeepney, went under to fix whatever problem again. He even asked the lady passenger seating in front to hold the clutch for him and to make sure it doesn't move. The two gays seating beside me said aloud, "This probably will take another 30 minutes. We better transfer than be stuck here." And off they went out to look for other transportation. I'm in no rush, besides being sleepy, so I just moved to the corner and sat still.

Indeed after around 25 minutes, the driver came back, and finally said that it's OKAY now. So we went ahead, but this time, there's just me and another lady passenger inside, and the two passengers in front. The other lady has lots of bulky presents with her so I guess that's why she didn't transfer, too. Lucky enough, the driver was right that all was well and we were able to reach Imus with no more stops. He picked up more passengers along the way from Padis Point then SM and the travel was uneventful afterwards.

I then took a jeepney home and arrived safely around 1:35am.

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PinasLiving: Night Travels During Holiday Seasons 2011 - 15th Eve
Night Travels During Holiday Seasons 2011 - 15th Eve
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