At the annual gathering of Manila’s foreign press, guests from the American diplomatic corps and the American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) surprised us by bursting into song.
It was a first for the Foreign Correspondents Association of the Philippines (FOCAP), to be serenaded by those we interview.
The song came with this intro –
Those who have suffered through Manila’s terrible traffic will appreciate the following, sung to the tune of “Jingle Bells.”
I don’t know who wrote the lyrics. But whoever did it must have been greatly inspired by being stuck in a car FOR HOURS.
I remember, I was once stuck on Edsa for FIVE HOURS a few days before Christmas.
In that same time, I could have flown to Singapore, taken a taxi to Orchard Road and checked in at a hotel.
So next time you’re stuck, whip out your mobile, go to my site and sing this song at the top of your voice.
My thanks to Heli Buenaventura, FOCAP’s Girl Friday, for sending me the lyrics.
And to fellow FOCAP member Melo Acuña who gave me the idea for this post when he wrote the following on Facebook:
They must remember Metro Manila’s the window to the country, from the airport to the seaport and the routes to the north and south expressways. If MMDA can’t even solve the traffic problem, how much more can they address the other concerns?
Just a disclaimer: The song is not an official reflection of the sentiments of the US Embassy or AmCham.
But I totally agree with the lyrics. Here they are below.
After reading them, you can click on the video I took. Sorry I did not catch the beginning of their singing.
Traffic Christmas carol
(Sung to the tune of Jingle Bells)
Traffic jam, traffic jam, traffic all the way.
What a pain, it is to drive, on Manila’s streets today.
We will all be late
For the office or a date
Jeepneys choke the streets
Taxis you just hate
Buses block the way
People clog the lane
All we can do is shout and curse,
It’s driving me insane!
Traffic jam, traffic jam, traffic all the way,
What a pain, is it to drive, on Manila’s streets today!”
NOTE: I’m on a brief vacation right now to spend time with my hubby and son and to recharge.
I hope to upload one more piece before Sunday. But I promise to be back writing about politics after the New Year :)
Cesar Evangelista says
I know this post was way back before Christmas of 2011. But I just want to take time to state here that nothing, or at the very least too little, had been accomplished in our Metro streets as of this writing.
Too many jeepneys, with a few passengers on board, clog the streets of Manila and maybe everywhere else. Is there even a study conducted by anyone, especially from the LTO or LTFRB, that indicates the limit of these jeepneys along any route? This is very important because if there is no such limit, and I’m sure we have come to the breaking point, one day these jeepneys would stretch from the start of their route to its end and back again!
Just dealing with the sheer multitude of these jeepneys is a mind-boggling phenomenon to which we seem to turn a blind eye. Add to these the way these jeepney drivers violate all and any traffic rules with wild abandon.
I guess similar problems hound public buses, tricycles, kuligligs and what have you that have stockpiled our sorry streets.
Another aspect of the traffic mess is the scheduling of trash collection. I mean, the garbage we dispose need not be collected during rush hours, right? We can prepare our segregated trash, put them safely outside our residence where the collector can see them, and they can be collected during the very early hours of the day just before everybody else wakes up. The same goes for all delivery trucks and vehicles that nowadays compete for parking along main thoroughfares beside markets again during rush hours! Those deliveries should be done before anyone even starts to trek to the market, right? Heck, parking should not be allowed along main thoroughfares at all – period!
Rainy August has caused so many pot holes that all of the above are now compounded. The “BER” months are fast approaching and these problems show no signs of letting up, just like the monsoon rains.
Someone please address these perennial traffic mess!
Have fun Raissa! You deserve a break and spend quality time with your loved ones. I’m wishing you the best this coming new year. I will always be your fan.
nyuk nyuk nyuk nyuk…and a hahahahahah. Good one Raissa. May I comment on Johnny Lin’s message? I remember that excuse…I was in grade school and I heard that over the radio as one commentator made that e excuse. Isn’t it just exasperating to have squatters rule the streets? And what are our Barangay Chairmen and Mayors doing? Nothing.
Boss ni Pnoy says
huwag mo isisi lahat sa squatters, siguro mas bagay kung sasabihin natin na ang dahilan nito ay dahil walang disiplina ang nakakarami….at kung disiplina ang pag uusapan hindi lang squatters ang involve dito baka ikaw ako tayong lahat..kuha mo?
rafael l. vidal says
it will take extra-strong political will and billions of pesos to ease the monstrous traffic jams that diminish the attractiveness of metro manila for foreign investments and tourists as well, and that time is not forthcoming in the near foreseeable future.
for the meantime, let us suffer the fate of unplanned urbanization.
Marlene Howe says
I wonder if the MMDA will listen to their song :)
Johnny lin says
In the early sixties during the time of Manila Mayor Villegas, there was a councilor who predicted:
Hindi natin dapat payagan iyang mga sidewalk vendors sa underpass, umabuso na sila sa avenida at carriedo at ang mga jeep wag padamihin sa Quiapo. Sagot ng pangalawang konsehal, naghahanap buhay lang sila ng marangal kaysa magnakaw. Bawi ni unang konsehal: mabuti pa nga sigurong magnakaw dahil kaunti lang ang naperwisyo kaysa sa payagan silang umabuso at maperwisyo buong sambayanan.
The councilor lost in the next election; his prediction is nation’s nightmare now.
Johnny lin says
An eye opener for new year resolution; blackeye for the nation despite the holiday spirit. Another blow to Philippine tourism. The root cause of the problem is politics and corruption on number of buses, jeepneys, tricycles in main roadways. Street peddlers slow down vehicles while sidewalk vendors and stores encroaching on sidewalks force pedestrians to the streets thus vehicles and peope clog the lane.
Tolerance and compassion are the opiates of Filipino people and the battlecry of corrupt politicians.
Jun Bagaoisan says
I am just new subscriber but I do love and read all your articles especially on politics you research alot.
Happy New Year to you and yours.
Thank you for coming.
rey mazon says
i love the song..i tried it and sounds good..ha…ha..ha!!!..tamang tama sa current situation natin dyan ano?..kahit na yata ilang ulit akong magbakasyon sa atin di na magbabago ang traffic situation lalo na dyan sa may makati and pasig city where i leave..
anyway..just want to say hello and really appreciate all the things you write in your column..its fun, its exciting and its great!!!!…’brief vacation’..i thought you were a computer..because i think only a computer can get/ write/think/ argue/ explain clearly issues related on politics….
hey just kidding ha?…im a great fan of yours and wish you and your family and all loved your ones a Very Happy New Year!!!
i envy you and the others who were and/ or will be with their family/ loved ones on special occasions like these…
im still here in saudi and my family is back home in the philippines…Good Luck and God Bless…
Salamat sa liham mo.
Take care in Saudi,
Inshallah, you will be with your family and won’t have to leave them to work.