Monday, January 07, 2008

A Jeepney Ride

Here in Davao we only have a few not-so-modern but one-of-a-kind and only-in-the-Pinas public transportation. We have the ever common Tricycles (trisekel), which are the means and ways for going around subdivisions & villages or getting inside a street.

We have the Habal2x(Big Bikes that can accomodate 4-5 people) which are used by students in UP Mindanao. We have the boat ride, which is basically used to commute from Davao to Samal Island and also the boat ride going across the Bankerohan River.

For the main highway we have the jeepneys, the non-air taxis (whose existence is is threatened) and the airconditioned taxis. We used to have buses but I guess the city decided not to have them. Buses are used only for out-of-town rides and not as a means to go around Davao City.

Usually, I ride jeepneys!

Choosing Jeepneys:

  • Basically, I enjoy my jeepney rides here in Davao. Specially, when it is a long ride. I'm a picky jeepney rider. I only ride empty jeepneys. (Here in Davao, you have the luxury to choose your rides, unless you are in a hurry) Maybe two or three more passengers would not hurt but more than six? Nuh-uh. I would not want to ride that. Sometimes, it would take me 15 minutes to look for the perfect ride. Nyahaha. Really. I'm that picky.
A bit of History:

Before when I was in first year high school and the "boom-boom jeepneys" or "uso-uso jeepneys" were a fad, I would ride them with my peers.

What are they? They are usually "lawin jeepneys" with "lower lower" sides (I don't know the car term for that). They have LOUD MUSIC playing either rock music or whatsoever they call "uso" that time (papa roach, linkin park, INOJ and other techno music). Each place(lanang, buhangin, bajada, sasa) have their own corresponding "uso-uso jeepney" with their own names. There is Amelyn, Quo Vadis, and uhmm I can't remember other jeepney names but I remember the black and green one with lower lower sides. Passengers would scream their name (and much to my chagrin I was one of them before) and hurry to rush inside and get a good seat. We'd rush beside ADDU because that's where they pick up passengers (and they usually get full right away). It's a rowdy, loud ride with dark, seedy, psychotic passengers. I got to experience that ride for half a year. Whew. And I'm glad I'm over that stage already.

When I lost my interest, they are slowly losing their touch and their "uso-ness". And just 3-4 years ago I think police are starting to confiscate their "stereos". I guess a lot of people are already complaining of the loud noise. So, now those "Uso-Uso jeepneys" are a myth and you'd prolly hear about them in stories only like what I am sharing to you.

Back to Choosing jeepneys:

  • I want to be at the butt of the jeepney and not at the other end. It's easier to go down that way.
  • I prefer multicabs over large lawin jeepneys.

During my jeepney rides, specially if it's windy and I can feel the cool air brushing my face and whipping my hair in different directions, that's where I get to think most. You know, suddenly a thought about certain this and that would pass and then you'd reflect the why's, who's, and what's.

I love to observe the people, laughing friends, cute babies, crying kids, nurses, moms, preggies, and the everyday-people. I eavesdrop with their conversations, laughing inside if they said something funny or muttering inside whenever they said something so off (which is rare).

A jeepney ride, is where you get to smile at strangers and laugh with them whenever something funny happened. Or be mad together with them and gang on a jeepney driver or conductor.

Why talk about jeepneys now?

Well, I just want to share my jeepney rides with you and how much fun a jeepney ride in Davao can be.


Mon said...


In Bataan Economic Zone, where I grew up, Jeepney is the main mode of transport. Tricycles here only travel at 3-7AM for the early risers (factory workers). though cheaper, they just cant compete with the services that the jeepney offers.

But in the capitl ofBataan, tricycle seems to be the King of the road. Boy, just imagine the smoke and the noise.

Anonymous said...

Well I take jeepneys on provinces but in the city I take taxis since I cant drive yet. I just can't stand the pollution especially now that I am no longer used to it.

I do like the feelings of the wind blowing against your face but now you can only do it in the provinces where the air is still clean

tina said...

mon: jeepneys are way better than a tricylce.. hehe. but tricycles are a nice fun ride.

chase: I guess big cities with pollution di mo na ma appreciate ang jeepneys nyan. but here in Davao the air is fresh.. dami rin kasi trees na balance lang.

Kenneth said...

hi ate tina!

thanks for describing Habal Habal(HH) in UP Mindanao! Well, the HH is now a tradition in UP Min, however, the Admin of UPMin had been agressively making the jeepneys come to UP Min carrying the passengers to and fro the Colleges,
& to and fro Mintal and Downtown (Roxas Ave.).

It seems the HH can't seem to be the safest to drive here now, even with the newly-cemented roads - they tend to run faster and, in no time, becomes a danger to studes, faculty and staff to ride from Mintal to UPMin & vice versa.

But many here are still loving the HH than the jeepneys because they can take u wherever u want unlike jeepneys that have to be filled up before it can run. But the Admin said that this HH wont be in the streets when they will propose that only vehicles 3 wheels and up will be allowed to enter UPMin. A mere goodbye to HH, and a hello to tricycles (tray-si-kel) and jeepneys.

thanks! God Bless U!

Edwin said...

tinapieeeee! hehe am looking forward for a jeepney ride when im there ok? hehe HUGS!

ychel said...

hi tina! how r u? ngyon lang ulit nakadaan dito. sorry.=(

interesting post..ive got lots lots of experiences wen it comes to jeepney rides.hehe! i even got an accident wen i was in college..but its always fun especially wen ur with ur friends. :)

take care tina..have a nice week ahead..i miss u.mwahugs.

Angelo said...

Hi Tina! Yahoo! Scenes from a Jeepney ride hehe... I hope one day to write my first post titled "scenes from a jeepney ride". I remember riding jeepneys in QC, but I had to switch to the air-conditioned FX's coz the pollution aggravated my allergic rhinitis, and I would always end up congested at the end of the day. I made sabit a couple of times too, that was fun. Thanks for posting this, it made me want to go back to the Philippines just so I can ride a jeepney and experience the interesting happenings. I'm bored of the subway, it's always the same thing :) Ingat ka on your rides Tina!

ann said...

Pag nasa bakasyon kami sa pinas, nakikiusap mga bata na isakay ko daw sila ng jeep/tricycle, so kahit walang pupuntahan sinasakay ko sila.

sUmMeR said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
sUmMeR said...

I can really agree to your post. I love riding the jeepney too. except when I'm in a hurry though. one thing we don't have in common. I prefer big lawins than multicabs. why? 'coz I'm a big gentle lady. haha.

I remember, the first time I learned riding one around the city, it was when I was in 1st yr or 2nd yr college. Sheeesh!
Due to my over-protective parents, that's the reason why I'm a late bloomer in terms of the ride-of-my-life-with-the-jeepney :D

hehe. made me think about a lot of things... :) mmm...

CM said...

I'm not really picky when riding a jeep coz I'll be late in school if I do. Haha!

zherwin said...

when riding jeepneys, literally, we are on the opposite sides. i like it most in front, the one beside the driver, because except for some, hindi sya ganun kasikip. i don't mind riding a jeep full of passengers but i hate it when im the last passenger to go inside and have to settle half of my butt for the little space called seats!

myles said...

hi.. before i used to ride on a jeepney everyday when i go to school and i miss those days. now, i'm riding on a "trisikad" when i go to school because it is more convenient!

Mari said...

I remember in one of my jeepney rides back home, a woman passenger complained to the driver his loud music. She said, "Mama hinaan naman ninyo ang tugtog." And he replied back to her, "Ale, hindi tugtog banko dito...duon kayo, sa banko." LOL To this time I still remember that.

When I went back home in 2002 the jeepneys have changed. They are much bigger now. Not those short bodied ones.

Anonymous said...

Jeepneys! Malapit sa akin ang mga jeep. 'Yun kasi ang business ng family. Tapos ang trabaho ng dad ko ay related dun. Jeepney driver. Tapos si dad ko kasi, nakikilabas lang dati sa ibang operator during those times na wala pa kaming sarili. Ngayon, operator na siya. Wala lang. Nice post. :D

pam said...

ako, i ride jeepneys talaga. xD pero ang hate ko ngayon, grabe ang pollution. hehe. ;) tapos most of the time, im in a rush pa. haha. super bad day pag ganun. ;)

pero sarap pa ring sumakay sa jeepneys. :P ewan ko ba..iba yung feeling. hehe.

Sidney said...

Happy New year! I wish you all the best for 2008!

Yes, jeepney rides can be fun!

Vk-mahalkaayo said...

hello tina,

wish ko sa imoa, all the best for the New Year, 2008.

Kumusta na ka? dugay na wla ko kabisita diri,....abi nako tua pa ka sa gawas-pinas.

Ako pod gusto, kay Pedicab, kay dili kayo puno, ug ihatod gyd ta sa atong lugar nga gusto, bisan pa ipapasok gyd nimo sa atubangan sa atong gipuy-an.

thanks for sharing sa post nimo ron...

Have a nice weekends..........daghan kayo salamat sa pagbisita ha?


Spence said...

I love riding jeepneys. You get to feel the wind (and collect particulate matter) on your face, observe people, (stalk?), and you can also get your stuff snatched bigtime! Hehehe. Kidding aside, jeepneys are awzum. I just hope that the drivers won't be too reckless and stubborn in obeying traffic laws (it's all because of the boundary system!). And that they take some major bath too!

aCey said...

i miss davao... i used to go around in a tricycle. long time ago...

i wish the air here in cebu would be pure again so we can take the jeep. hehe. it's a lot cheaper than a cab.

happy riding, tina! :)

Ferdz said...

I also like jeepney rides. It's very pinoy. So many interesting characters minsan, and minsan me drama rin sa loob (passenger vs Driver) lot of things happening there.

MeL said...

I love jeepney rides! enjoyed reading your post and nalaman ko we have similar things pala. I love it when the wind brushes my face and how my hair being blown everywhere bec aside from reflecting over your thoughts, I somehow felt like a damsel in distress. LOL.

dodong flores said...

Jeepney is a thing you love to hate. It is undeniably the biggest contributor of the city pollution (gas and noise). It is also undeniably a part of our culture and can't just easily be erased. Don't you know that in some cities, there are move to phase out those jeepneys? I think I don't like with the idea. It's not helpful at all. If their concern is about pollution, better regulate/impose strict renewal of registration procedure to those smoke-belchers. Jeepney is a symbol of Filipino culture and I'm not in favor of its eradication. As you say, in jeepney, it is where you can smile to strangers, etc. Also, there's the bayanihan spirit in riding jeepney where the passenger seated back of the driver would help in handing in and out payment and change. As a Filipino, jeepney is one symbol that even make as unique as individual. Think about it, why phase out jeepneys here in the Philippines when even Indonesia and Malaysia are importing jeepneys from us. Trust me, in their remote provinces, they are running Philippine jeepneys as means of transportation.
I used to drive jeepney plying Butuan to Nasipit when I was in college. I partly supported my studies through it.
Back in Cebu in the early 1990s, car stereos are confiscated from jeepneys - similar things there in Davao. I have nothing against it. Sound pollution must also be given a remedy.
Enough said.
Jeepney is a part of my life and I am delighted to be reading this post. Thanx for sharing, Tina! :)