Archive for the ‘driving’ Category

Driving in Cambodia

Tuesday, December 18th, 2012

I have never seen so many motorcycles in one place before. In America, there is the stereotype that Asian peoples are the worst drivers. I feel that most stereotypes have a ring of truth to them.  I see some of that truth here in Cambodia.  Driving here is simultaneously the most active and passive daily event.  There are no stop signs, no right of way, minimal traffic lights.  Honking is serves as a warning of a vehicles presence.  It is the most unorganized, yet efficient mess I’ve ever seen.

I think part of it has to do with the atmosphere here in regards to driving.  People swerve and cut in and out of every space possible.  Did I mention there is no observance of lane space?  Cause there isn’t.  Everyone moves together: big trucks, fancy Mercedes, tuk tuks, motorcycles, and bicycles.  When you want to go somewhere against the flow of traffic you just do it.  You are patient with those in front of you and you don’t cut any one off.  Those coming against you slow down to let you pass as others cut around you in different directions.  This style of driving doesn’t work well in places like the U.S., where drivers are impatient, rude, and unnecessarily aggressive.  It does work well here however.

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Oh, and those motorcycles…they hold anywhere from one to five people (some adult some children, or infants) or hundreds of pounds of fresh fruit or brooms or ladders.  Whatever they can carry with them goes on the motorcycle.

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