And, now on this very historic day, on these busy streets of Jakarta, en route back from Mangga Dua Mall to our hotel in Central Jakarta, Pak Polisi had raised his hands and instructed our cab driver to pull to the side. All panicky and full of swears, he had no choice but to stop by the busy street.
Pak Polisi then came over and told the driver of the offence he had committed. He argued, saying that the light was still green when he made the turn. Our cabbie was asked to produce his documents. Unfortunately, he couldn’t find a single piece of paper, proof of him as the authorized person to be behind the wheels. Boy…talk about living (and driving) dangerously!!
This upset our cabbie even more. As he dug into the glove compartment looking for something which we suspected, was never really there in the first place, nasty words came out from him. “Anjing…Pak Polisi, anjingan.” He even had the cheek to have me be his alibi. He said, “Ibuk nampak tadi yang lampu itu masih hijau? Ibuk silakan kasi tau sama Pak Polisi saya ngak buat salah apa-apa.” I gave him this dirty look which communicated in not so many words this message, "Hey, you screwed up, you get yourself out of this.”
Gotcha.... our driver
The three of us didn’t quite know what to do actually. We wanted to get out of the cab and go get a new one. Upon looking at his pathetic face, we however didn’t have the heart to abandon this cabbie. Hence, we decide to just stay put in the vehicle. It’d be just a while more, I assured both Muni and Jupe who were comfortably seated in the back.
Our cabbie, this small built Javanese man, went out from the car and went to “settle” things with the policeman. It was no secret that he didn’t have enough to get himself out of this rut. With a sad and pitiful face, he turned to me asking if he could borrow IDR20,000, the needed amount to pay off the anjing Pak Polisi. He promised he’d pay me back later. I handed him the money and he went out and came back not long after that.
He then continued to drive us back to our hotel. It was a long ride that was. Fortunately, our cabbie’s mood was back to normal and he was his usual chirpy self, some 3 kilometers away from the place he was stopped. He had now somewhat become our city tour guide. He even took us pass routes where we could view street demos from close vicinity. Ok lah…he was already forgiven for what he had done earlier on.
When we arrived at our hotel, I paid him the fare we owed him. Before I got out, he told me to wait as he wanted to pay me back the IDR20,000 I lent him earlier. Naahh…I shook my head indicating that he need not have to pay me back.
I must say, he was taken aback from my response. Alah tak pe lah….what is IDR20,000?? Equivalent to about RM6.00 our money. Sedekah je lah…
That day was his unlucky day, to be stopped by the angingan Polisi (as how he put it). I have had my fair share of escaping from our own Abang-Abang Polis back home. Thus, I knew how he must be feeling…