Friday, September 1, 2017

Wisdom from the Road #55

On hitching a ride
Not all hitchhikers are evil.
Not all drivers who stop for hitchhikers are evil.
If you believe otherwise, please stop watching horror movies.

2012. My friend and I went to a sleepy part of Medellin and did not ask the habalhabal driver to wait for us. When it was time to head back, we found ourselves walking half a kilometer to a dusty road where we saw some trucks passing by. We stuck our thumb out to hitch a ride on a truck hauling sugarcane. By the time we reached the highway, the cab of the truck was already standing room cab only. Thank you sugarcane-truck driver for saving us from having to walk under the heat of the sun.

2012. I joined some officemates for a hike at Babag. They were hares, I was a turtle. Thankfully, this turtle did reach the goal. On our hike down to the highway, I, again, was the turtle. But this turtle kept his ears open and when he heard a truck approaching, he turned around to hitch a ride. And overtook his hare-officemates. His hare-officemates laughed and ran as they caught up to join him in the back of the truck. Thank you truck driver for saving our weary legs!

2014. I found no motorcycles for hire at the parking area of Hidden Beach in Aloguinsan. I sat under a tree debating whether to walk to the highway (it was a little after noon and it was scorching) or to wait and hope for a habalhabal to arrive. While the debate went on in my head, I saw a shiny white van slowly move out of the parking area. I quickly walked towards it to ask for a ride to the highway. Thank you Mr Teban for letting me hop in your shiny van with the AC on at a cool and comfortable temperature.

2015. It was drizzling when my friends and I turned to leave Manunggal. We were still 5 or 6 kilometers to the highway. I let my friends go ahead. I slowed my pace and strained my ears for any hint of a vehicle approaching. Eventually, an open bed truck did come and it was rolling along slowly because of the very bad road condition. I asked the driver where he was going and it turned out he was headed to Balamban. Perfect, that's where we were headed, too! I asked if we could hitch a ride and he answered in the affirmative. I called to my friends to come back and pile in. And we were on our way! Thank you! Woohoo!

2016. My friends and I had just arrived at the Cebu pier from our weekend in Pamilacan Island in Bohol. It was night time and I was trying to think of the fastest and safest way to get home. I saw an army truck waiting outside and three army guys were talking to some of their friends and helping them up the back of the truck. I asked where they were going (Lahug) and because I am a cheap ass, I asked to hitch a ride (though it was not the most direct route home, I figured I'd be safer). Thank you, army people!

2017. Along the highway in Oslob, Hitomi, a Japanese Couchsurfer, and I were waiting for the bus. Hitomi would wave at passing cars. I was surprised when one pick-up truck slowed to a stop. He thought we wanted to hitch a ride. That's how we got a free ride back to Cebu City. Thank you Hitomi for waving, and thank you kind sir for letting us get a free and faster ride!

Yes, there is still kindness in this world! (But of course, we all have to be on our toes and not let our guard down.)

For more lessons from the road, please visit Go Learn.

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