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Filipe Morgado Written by Filipe Morgado

Taking a "trustworthy" taxi in Ica, Peru - Photo story

It was November of 2015. I was staying for one month in Peru, visiting that incredible country and also “resetting” my life. Besides photographing a lot there, I also have interesting travels stories to tell you :). This story is about the crazy traffic in Peru.

That day, I was staying in Ica and just wanted to go to a neighbor city called Nazca to see Nazca Lines. But Peru traffic has its own surprises and I had an adventure before the real adventure in Nazca while in a taxi going to the bus terminal.

C’mon, Filipe. What is the problem of getting a taxi?

A small crash followed by a pursuit and also with police involved is enough for you? Hahahaha :P Like a movie, my friend!

Let’s get down to our story…

This is the crazy traffic in Arequipa, I really like this photo and I'm using it to represent city traffic in Peru. Traffic jam is really a problem in Arequipa and they also drive like crazy as in Ica. But the taxi stories in Arequipa are not that awesome as the one in Ica. Keep reading :) | ISO 160; 168mm equiv.; f/4; 1/800s
This is the crazy traffic in Arequipa, I really like this photo and I’m using it to represent city traffic in Peru. Traffic jam is really a problem in Arequipa and they also drive like crazy as in Ica. But the taxi stories in Arequipa are not that awesome as the one in Ica. Keep reading :) | ISO 160; 168mm equiv.; f/4; 1/800s

Travel photo story, taxi in Ica, Peru

I’ve bought the Nazca Lines tour with the help of the hotel I was staying in Ica. The hotel also helped me to schedule a “trustworthy” taxi to get me from the hotel till the bus terminal so that I could go to Nazca. The hotel was really good except that recommendation, hahaha.

I was sitting at the reception waiting for the taxi. It was not on time. So I asked the receptionist. He called the taxi driver and he said the taxi was almost arriving… Some more minutes and nothing happened… I asked him again and… Filipe, he is a little late, but you will get your bus in time, don’t worry. I just trusted his words…

Some more minutes passed and the taxi arrived. The driver apologized, was very nice to me, I sat in the back of the car on the opposite side of the driver, and we went to the bus terminal. But…

Imagine a big avenue. With two main lanes, one for each direction. In the middle of them, there was a big space with trees and in some spots, you could cross from one side to the other. Hum… Probably it is not so easy to imagine… So, Google StreetView is here to help. I’m talking about this place:

The traffic was intense. It was a mess like in Arequipa, but I would say It was worst. The driver crossed to the central part of the avenue, but there were also many other cars and together with them some “tuctucs”/mototaxis, those 3 wheels “cars” that you can see in the picture above.

Guess what happened? The taxi driver was turning to get to the other side of the avenue but a mototaxi was doing the same and… crash… yes. And yes, the taxi driver could have avoided it, but whatever… he scratched the old mototaxi.

The mototaxi driver got very angry immediately. He jumped out of the 3-wheel vehicle and went in our direction to “talk” to the taxi driver.

I said it would get interesting. Well, for you that is reading. I was late for my bus and I didn’t want to be involved in local news hahaha.

But, can you guess what happened?

The taxi driver accelerated and escaped! Wow!! I thought the taxi driver was crazy. He is running away! OMG. He was probably thinking that “I have a car, he is just a mototaxi. He won’t be able to catch me”

But the tuctuc driver was angry…

And the traffic was not good…

Not that difficult to guess that suddenly the mototaxi appeared from our right, in high speed, passed us and thrown his tuctuc in front of our car.

Now, you won’t believe. But it really happened. The taxi driver hit the tuctuc again! He didn’t stop as fast as required and crashed at the back of the tuctuc. I was asking myself, did he hit the same car twice? He is kidding me!! Is he trying to make us laugh? Hahahahaha. No way! What a dumb driver.

The tuctuc driver was already mad, after that second crash he got insane. I was scared. But my taxi driver was very calm, smiling, like nothing was happening, in a “don’t worry, be happy” state. He seemed to be acting like he was superior and nothing could get him, it was strange.

Again, the mototaxi driver came to the taxi driver window and this time he opened the window and they started to “talk”.

The tuctuc driver was hitting with both hands on the door of the car, in that region where the window goes up and down. I’m not kidding, he was hitting hard! Hit, hit, hit and while hitting the door he said something like:

You hit in my car twice!!! Twice!!! You hit it!! You hit it!! Are you crazy? Do you know how to drive? You will pay!!!! …

But then, he asked:

Give me your license and your ID!!

The taxi driver calmly opened the glove compartment and gave him just his business card. Hahaha, funny man.

Where is your driver’s license?!?!?!?!

I don’t have one.

:open_mouth: Whaaaaattttt??? I’m in a taxi that the driver doesn’t even have a license to drive!?!? WTF! OMG!! I didn’t say that, just thought about it. The situation had enough problems already.

You can imagine how angry the tuctuc driver was. But then, another movie like coincidence happened.

A police car was just passing by and when the mototaxi saw it, he almost jumped in front of the police car to stop it and ask for help.

Then I thought… ok, no more Nazca Lines today, we are really in trouble right now :(. But, at least with the police around, none of the drivers would try something stupid and nothing really bad would happen.

The police came to talk.

To my surprise, the taxi driver said he was taking me to the bus station that was very near there and that I was late to get the bus.

The police officer looked and said:

Ok. You can take him to the bus terminal, but I’m going with you.

Amazing, right?!!

He entered the car. We got to my destination, the taxi driver calmly explained to me where I needed to go to get the bus inside the terminal and also said that everything was ok (he probably have noticed my scared face and really not believing on what was happening face). I answered him back with “Cuidate”, an expression that I’ve heard from Peruvians many times in this travel (something like beware, take care of yourself).

And that was it. I have no idea what happened after that. I just know that I got the bus on time and saw Nazca Lines some hours later.

Have crazy travel taxi stories like that? Share with us below! :)

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