Travelling to Shinyang Park Hotel on a morning like any other, I noticed two disconcerting things about my taxi driver. Her driving, akin to the majority of Korean taxi drivers, was aggressive and forceful.
More worrying though was her erratic nature, angry disposition and the fact that she was watching a Korean soap opera while slaloming in and out of traffic.
I’m a big advocate of multi-tasking but this was an outrageous attempt of killing two birds with one stone.
An eerie feeling came over me as we approached the hotel and, like a character in Final Destination, I had an inkling, when the disgruntled driver reached for her vibrating cell phone, that something was about to go awry.
Her attention placed solely on her mobile device, the car started veering into oncoming traffic. I ushered a warning call that fell on deaf ears.
With a startling yelp, I tried in vain one more time to avert disaster. She grabbed for the wheel and jerked hard to the right but there was no stopping the inevitable.
Our taxi sideswiped an oncoming car, the side-view mirror flying into the air like debris from an explosion.
The magnitude of the situation, after coming to a screeching stop, finally dawned on the soap opera, mobile-phone loving driver.
Quicker than the incident itself, I handed over the taxi fare and fled on foot the rest of the way. I had no intention of sticking around for any further horror shows.
I emerged from the scene of the crime physically unharmed but was concerned, even though she probably had it coming, for the driver’s mental wellbeing.
From time to time I wonder if she’s still tuning in to her favourite soap opera while tempting fate with her next unsuspecting victim.