on switching sides
by Jake Quinn
Do not underestimate how much of a big deal the ‘switching to driving on the left fiasco’ is to the people of Samoa. This is like MJ’s death times ten.
A half-week public holiday has been called. This is not unusual in parts of the Pacific where public holidays are almost as frequent as weekends.
Bus drivers have gone on strike demanding more money because of ‘increased risk’. Heh, why not.
There is a booze ban to help drivers adjust. Good. Being sober is generally advised when driving, especially when adjusting to new conditions.
Having spent some time in the Pacific myself and sharing a house with someone who visits frequently, I cannot help but notice that there has been no similar ban on Kava consumption. This would have been advised, though basically unenforceable.
Colin Espiner is conveniently working while on holiday (I assume) as it’s not standard practice for The Press to send its Political Editor to the islands to cover such news.
Colin chats to his taxi driver who thinks people are going to die. “Mind you” Colin muses, “given the way he was driving, it’s no surprise. It’s difficult to tell which side of the road he is supposed to be driving on. When asked why he keeps veering across to the other side of the road, he replies: I’m practising.”