While I’m being slightly melodramatic, I was getting nervous.
Here’s what happened…
I got a cab from Parque Lafevre to Albrook Mall bus station.
I don’t like to let on to taxi drivers that I’m a Gringa (I can pass for Latina), so I didn’t say anything in the car, but then the person meeting me called & I had no choice but to speak English, so obviously he knew.
He was one of the first REAL crazy taxi drivers I’ve had in Panama since being here almost 3 months & he got angry at other cars a couple of times swearing in Spanish. His taxi was so beaten up, that I don’t think his horn worked.
Anyway, he’s weaving in & out of traffic (it wasn’t rush hour, but there was still traffic), going in parking lots to get around traffic, etc. & then we get to the bus station.
I tried to give him $2, but figured he may want $3, as that’s how much I was charged from the Albrook bus station back to my apartment.
The next thing I know, he’s telling me it’s $7. I’m like WHAT??? No way am I giving you $7, I said, “I’ll give you $3.” No he says, give me $6 & then he starts to drive away with me STILL IN THE TAXI.
I take out my phone & start calling the person meeting me saying this guy is highjacking me. The person meeting me wants to know where I am. I gave the taxi driver $4, but he still wanted more & I couldn’t open the door because there was no door handle (typical in Panamanian taxis).
He finally leaned over & opened the door for me after I told him that my friend is coming to talk to you. I stood outside the taxi waiting for the person to arrive, the taxi driver is STILL sitting there with his hands out & then he finally drives off.
The person coming really was going to talk to him.
The taxi driver had driven forward 3 separate times with me in the taxi (after we had already arrived), & I really thought he was going to kidnap me until I gave him the RIDICULOUS amount he was trying to steal from me.
This is the first time I’ve been ripped off this heavily by a taxi driver.
Hey, with the amount of taxis I take, it was bound to happen eventually : )