The events inside the jeep were a usual scenario. Folks handling over the payment of other folks seated at the back, lovers whispering nonsense to each other, teenagers texting, a mother seating her child on her lap so that the kiddo would have a free ride and so on.
A chubby lady with fake eyebrows beside me wearing an all black dress and a colorful scarf around her waist spoke in straight English saying, “Will you hand over my payment?” I was stunned and yet still took the coins in her hand and handed it over to the driver saying in Tagalog, “Mama bayad daw po.” The lady then said to the driver in commanding voice and again in straight English, “I’ll alight at the shed area.”
Everybody inside the jeepney looked at her but the driver did not seem to hear what she said. When the jeepney was already passing the shed area along EDSA, the puffed-up lady spoke in louder voice, “Mister, I said shed area! I told you I will go down at the shed area!” but still the driver does not seem to hear her for he did not stop from driving.
Everybody inside the jeep was looking at her dazed and puzzled. In her even louder voice, Her Highness shouted “Shed areaaaa! I said shed area!” but the jeepney was still running and was already 50 meters away from the shed area.
I was chuckling and trying to control my laughter. I did not want to speak and do not want to translate in Tagalog whatever she was saying for I was enjoying every moment of it. Then suddenly a man seated at the back spoke in a not so loud voice said “para” which the driver obviously heard for he stopped at the nearest corner. Being seated at the backmost portion, the man was able to alight the vehicle almost instantly. Then the jeepney started to run again giving no chance for the overweight lady to stand and get out of the jeepney.
I failed to control from laughing when the snooty lady shouted in clear Tagalog language. “Mama! Para! Itigil mo na ang jeep! Bababa na ako!” That’s the time the driver understood her, heard her and got startled. He immediately put the vehicle to a stop and let the chubby lady get off the vehicle.
But before the high and mighty lady got off her seat, she again spoke furiously to the driver in English saying, “I will mark your plate!” The driver just looked at her with an unruffled face and did not seem to comprehend. The driver looked at me and asked, “Ano daw?” That was the time I gave in to a very loud laugh.
The lady descended the jeepney, looked at the vehicle’s plate number then turned around while gnashing her teeth. I answered the driver telling him, “Wala po. Salamat daw.” Then the driver smiled and continued with his driving.
Lesson of the story: ilagay ang pagpapa-sosyal sa tamang lugar para tumigil ang jeep sa tamang lugar.