Well, I’m less than a week into my new life away from the daily grind and so far things are going well! I had been half expecting to have lots of free time now that my working day no longer involves spending 3-4 hours on public transport, however it’s amazing how quickly new tasks appear to fill the space. Not that I’m complaining you understand – right now, being busy is a very good sign!
But speaking of public transport, some of you may remember a post I wrote last year “Rio buses: Accidents waiting to happen” – it was the day after 7 people had died in a bus crash, so you can imagine I was feeling pretty strongly about bus safety.
But as well as safety concerns, my everyday complaint about riding on buses in Rio relates to the style of driving. Corners are treated with utter contempt, with most drivers actually accelerating as if trying to throw as many passengers off balance. If a traffic light turns red up ahead, but the driver has a 20 metre gap before the car in front, the driver will accelerate hard, then slam on the brakes at the last moment. Everyone gets thrown around bus for no good reason!
Well, if a picture is worth a thousand words, a video must be worth a couple of million. Here some school kids demonstrate the experience perfectly:
Pretty hilarious isn’t it? I’m sure that people who’ve ridden the buses here in Rio will identify with this.
In all seriousness, although the bus rides in Rio can be a little extreme, they’re not so bad that I would tell people to avoid them. The best advice I can give is to make sure you have a minimum of 3 points of contact with the bus at all times – only a fool does anything on a Rio bus without at least one hand gripping on to something solid!