Monday, June 7, 2010


Since I have no ca
r, no moped (too dangerous), and sometimes you just can't take the bus I end up taking taxis more than I ever had before coming here. They are pretty janky but they make the city very safe because the maximum you pay to go anywhere in Dakar is 2000 CFA ($4). Even though they give me security, they are annoying as hell sometimes.

First, the fare. There is a mandatory argument at the beginning of every cab ride where you discuss where you are going and what the price is. Prices raise by: distance to be traveled, number of people, number of stops, presence of baggage, looking like a foreigner, telling them to go a certain route, being near a place where rich people go (airport, concert venue, beach etc.), or just about anything you can imagine. At some point you just cut your losses and pay a little extra or you tell the cab to move on and you wait for the next one. There are strategies for paying less, like: speaking a little Wolof, being a cute girl, having a Senegalese person argue the fare for you, lying about where you are going, etc. I get why they jack up the prices but they shouldn't get all mad all the time, yeesh.

Overall, I'm glad for the taximen. They are always good for french conversation and Wolof practice. Sometimes I have really great chats with them and we end up just parking and talking about politics, Dakar, sports or whatever. Other times they are mean and just trying to get another dollar out of me. So its a balance. Sunset ride home.
Anyway, glad to be in the new house. Pics coming.
Jamma Jamma (peace)

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