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Milton J. Madison - An American Refugee Now Living in China, Where Liberty is Ascending

Federalism, Free Markets and the Liberty To Let One's Mind Wander. I Am Very Worried About the Fate of Liberty in the USA, Where Government is Taking people's Lives ____________________________________________________________________________________________ "Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice. Tolerance in the face of tyranny is no virtue." -Barry Goldwater-

Sunday, March 26, 2006

I Hate Driving In Hong Kong....

I hate driving in Hong Kong and Hong Kong drivers are among the most dense and self-centered drivers on earth. Besides being awful and obtuse drivers, they are flat out rude and inconsiderate. I guess since it is largely a luxury to drive and its the wealthy that own cars and since the wealthy here think that they are the center of the universe and everyone else exists to serve every desire that they have no matter how piddling or small, they feel no obligation what-so-ever to be even remotely neighborly.

It was an ominous sign on Friday that when I was driving down Garden Road and stopped at one of the traffic lights, that the Honda Odyssey in front of me had a vanity plate with just the numbers "666" on it! I know of no specific Chinese luck associated with the combination of digits even thought here are lot so those in the Chinese world. I just did not feel good about this. I moved up and passed him to get a look at this devil but his skin appeared to be a normal shade of yellow and wasn't green. I saw no horns on him and he may have put his trident for spearing souls in hell in the back of the vehicle.

Of course, when stopping in Wanchai to pick up my wife from her work, despite asking her to please please please not be late since it is so difficult to stop and wait, sometimes for as long as 10 minutes, while she dilly dallies around doing what ever it is while I steam in the car, despite me calling up to warn her 5 minutes before my arrival that I was arriving in 5 minutes and that for a change I would appreciate it if she got there before I did so I didn't have to jockey the car around... she was still late. I really don't like this. She is late 95% of the time and it is infuriating to me and she just doesn't get it when I tell her that I am sick of her being late in this situation. I have children in the car and have to stop and wait in an illegal double yellow line area with taxis and busses coming and going. One day I will get a ticket and then I will never do it again. She can take the bus.

So, while I was irritated that my wife can be so callous towards me in this situation I was driving in the drizzling rain towards Sai Kung. I am usually a very circumspect driver that takes all safety precautions and makes sure that the traffic both in front and behind me is acting rationally. So of course, when I wanted to move out of a lane I was traveling in that was behind a slow moving truck, into a faster moving lane, I looked over my right shoulder and into the mirror to see what the traffic conditions were in the other lane. There was one car maybe 50-75 feet behind me that I had been monitoring for several minutes giving me plenty of room to switch lanes and pass the truck. As a good driving citizen I signaled my intentions by using my right turn indicator and started my move. So what does the Hong Kong driver behind me do? Speeds up so that she is right besides me and give me a long unending horn honk.

You know, Hong Kong drivers are just the most rude people. Its as if taking that space "of theirs" is like robbing their money. Kill my children I can hear them say, but don;t take my money. Kind of like the Terns in the movie "Finding Nemo." Mine, mine, mine.... and of course this lady did not hit her brakes when it was obvious that I was changing lanes, she kept pace with me and continued to honk her horn and of course I held my ground a foot from her side. Finally, she moved 50 feet forward to the car in front and rode up the ass of that car. I guess she didn't appreciate the high beams that she got for the next few minutes since she flew away at a high rate of speed when the traffic bunch we were behind finally broke up.

A fine example of the utter senselessness of Hong Kong drivers is on a road near my home. On Friday traffic congestion backs up about a kilometer or so past my home. Opposing traffic attempting to make a right turn onto a road on the other side have to wait in a jug handle to join the downward flow of traffic only to then make their turn off the main artery onto the side street. Despite the fact, that these people will only temporarily join your lane of traffic only to immediately turn off, causing no delay at all in your journey down the hill but would save the other people time. Hong Kong drivers rarely let the other people go. They just pull right up behind the car in front and block all progress of the others. Its just rude and unnecessary but as the Terns said... Mine, mine, mine...

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