Sunday, February 10, 2008

Lima driving

Spent my last week in Peru in Lima. Didn´t do or see a whole lot so I guess I´ll return to one of my favorite topics...driving customs, to fill some space.

On the whole, the driving in Peru is not that bad. They do use the horn quite a bit. The taxis especially like to beep the horn at you to let you know they are there and willing. They´ll do it repeatedly in an attempt to grind you into submitting to a taxi ride. They see a guy like me and they come out from all over in an attempt to provide the taxi service. I´ve had them lined up waiting on main much so that I can´t get across the street (which is what I really want, not a taxi ride). Peruvians will tend to make 3 lanes where there are 2 and make left turns from the right lane of a 4 lane road, but overall fairly law abiding they are. They religiously stop for red lights and rarely block intersections.

My friend and I got pulled over the other night because her taillights were out. She lacks not only insurance but also a driver´s license. (She´s only been driving 3 years so what´s the rush to obtain a license?) Well, she talked for a minute with the police officer and eventually he asked her, ¨Do you want me to help you out with this?¨ She then promptly gave him the equivalent of $3 and off we drove. If only it were that easy where I come from...but then I guess I´m actually glad we enforce our laws...just not the laws I don´t like.

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