Last Saturday, I attended my sort-of cousin’s wedding. I say sort-of because technically speaking she’s my aunt but she’s younger than I am so I find it weird referring to her as my aunt.
Anyway, the wedding was in Talisayan, Misamis Oriental, which is around a three-hour bus ride away from where I live (Cagayan de Oro).
As expected, I got back pretty late, almost midnight, so I had to take a taxi from Agora Bus Terminal to our place. I took one of the taxis that was parked around the terminal.
Not even two minutes into the ride, the driver already had to maneuver around some scuffle in the road. Which wasn’t really a big deal. But then…
Mr. Driver started to narrate his experience of one roadside issue.
He talked about how he had recently punched another cab driver for swiping his prospective passenger. And how the said cab driver has filed a complaint against him with the LTFRB.
I had a long day and still a long night ahead and I was really not in the mood for a small talk so my responses were limited to “Yeah…” and “Uh-hmm.”
Now, what should have been a normal, easy ride home turned into one of the most terrifying rides I ever had.
Mr. Driver continued talking even if it was clear that I didn’t want to talk. Apparently, the cab driver he punched is asking 30,000 pesos in damages. Suddenly, he said…
“Ma’y pa’g gi patay nalang nako siya.” (I should have killed him).
That was when I went into alert mode.
I know people say things they don’t really mean often. But it was the way he said it that really terrified me. He didn’t say it in an angry way. He said it in a calm, serial killer-ish way like a psychopath about to be unleashed. (Maybe I’m watching too much crime shows).
In my mind, “If I don’t get off this cab, I may be murdered tonight or witness a murder. Either way, it’s not good for me.”
I frantically tried to call my brother so Mr. Driver knows someone is expecting me. And he knows that if I don’t show up in the next 10 minutes, someone will look for me. I also forced myself to respond to him even if I was shit scared and tired lest he gets pissed off at me for not acknowledging him. Thankfully, I got home safe. Slightly traumatized but still in one piece.
That may have been nothing. To him, maybe he was just genuinely trying to have a conversation. I may have just been overly paranoid. But to everybody out there (and I cannot emphasize this enough)…
Murder is a bad small talk topic. Especially to strangers. At midnight. Seriously. Talk about everything except your plan of committing heinous crimes.