My apologies--

by HolyMole @, Monday, September 18, 2017, 16:28 (88 days ago) @ John Redcorn

I was driving down Benito Jaurez a few years ago and made an illegal u-turn. My fault, I was half way through the turn before realizing my error so just went through with it.

Transito was standing on the corner so motioned for me to pull over. I got out to speak to him and was offered to pay the fine on site or at the courthouse. I was just making a quick trip to the store so did not have an ID and only $20USD in my pocket. I informed him of this and he replied that the $20 would settle it. I reached in my pocket and tried to hand him the $20. He got a bit flustered and told me "No, shake my hand". So I did. Still not happy, he replied "shake my hand with the money"

I guess he wanted to keep a low profile on the mordida.

Here are two "Canuck Driving in Mexico" stories:

I went through a red light in San Luis Potosi and the transito standing on the corner waved us over. At the time I was trying in vain to negotiate Potosi's bewildering one-way streets in Centro and was very stressed. I explained this in broken Spanish to the officer, who neither spoke nor understood English. He actually then drew me a detailed map, showing me how to get to where I wanted to go. I thought I was in the clear, but, to my dismay, he then began to fill-out the traffic ticket. I asked how much the fine was and he replied that it was 660 pesos. When it came to completing the block that asked for my "estado", I tried explaining that Canada has provinces, not states. This seemed to baffle him, (or maybe he likes Canadians?) and he finally waved me off. No mordida, just a smile.

Driving coastal Oaxaca, just exiting the town of Rio Colorado Tututepec (I think), in a 30 kph zone, I made a sudden, no-signal left turn off the highway to pull into a Pemex. Just as I did, a local taxi tried to pass me on the left, on a solid double line, at easily 60 or 70 kph. I turned right into him as he sped by, clipping the front right side of his taxi with my left front bumper. He went into a sideways skid and only his driving skill prevented his taxi from rolling over. We all pulled over to the side of the highway. The damage to my front bumper was negligible - no worth repairing, on a 10 year old car. His taxi, however, had a deep dent running all the way down the right side , from the front to the back. As a result, he couldn't open either of the doors on the right side.
I used the cabbie's cell phone to call long distance to my insurance company, (a toll-free number, as I recall), whose "agent" arrived about 3 hours later, having driven up from Pochutla in his very beat-up Volkswagen Bug, with no operating headlights. (It was getting dark by then.) He was covered in grease, having apparently been contacted while working on his Bug.
My agent, nor any of the fifteen or so other people, most of them friends of the cabbie, who had gathered along the highway, spoke any English. I was able to converse in my broken Spanish.
My agent insisted that the cabbie was at fault. The cabbie insisted I was at fault. After an hour of haggling, and frustrated that little progress was being made, I suggested we call the police. Exactly at that moment, a federale in his Dodge Charger came along the highway, and stopped to see what the crowd had gathered for. He sauntered over, very John Wayne-like, with his aviator sunglasses and fit-like-a-glove uniform, stood quietly for maybe 5 minutes listening to presentations from my agent and from the cabbie, then shrugged his shoulders, pointed at me, looked me in the eye, and said, in perfect, unaccented English: "Drive safely" - got into his car and drove off.
Long story short, it seemed that the cabbie was most concerned about his lost fares while standing along the highway for about 4 hours. The fact that he couldn't open either right hand door of his taxi didn't seem to concern him - he very likely could get the dent knocked-out cheaply. He seemed finally to accept my agent's insistence that the taxi was at fault. We finally settled that I would pay him 100 pesos for the use of his cell phone, which appeared to satisfy all parties.


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