With this blogging marathon, when I write a post every day, I would also try and cover certain aspects of my life here in Singapore. Nothing too scholarly, just a bit of what I observe and infer.
This island of Singapore amazes me in more ways than I can list. With a total land area of just about 700 km² it is one of the smallest Asian countries. It’s just a tiny dot on the map. But it still has about 26000 taxis on road at any point of time. And best way to know a city is to talk to its taxi drivers. The insights they will give you about a place will be far deeper than anyone else.
This morning I had another very interesting conversation with the taxi driver while coming to office. He told me that the taxi drivers were the most “non-preferred” category of prospective grooms in Singapore. It was very difficult to find wives for cab drivers. Reason being that taxi drivers were considered rude and arrogant from Singapore standards. Now that sounds totally incredulous to an Indian and more importantly to someone who has lived in Bangalore for 5 years. Because, we know a rude taxi driver when we see one. These Singaporeans cab drivers are by far calmer and better mannered than their counterparts in most countries.
But yes, compared to other Singaporeans they might be considered arrogant. You know, Singapore is a much pampered society. They follow their rules and they listen to their government. And in return they live a life which is envied by many others. The quality of life here I guess is among the top five globally, the crime rate second only to New Zealand. This kind of comfort living has made the citizens very matter of fact. To quote the cab driver “We Singaporeans behave like Robots”
And maybe this is why the cab guys are considered rude. You tell them to go straight and they will, but if you change your mind mid way and ask them to pull over, they will grumble. Everything is relative. And these folks who might appear delightful to us Indians are not the most sought after category locally.