Read a book perhaps. Listen to podcast. Sleep. Play candy crush. Drive. Listen to music. Listen to the radio. Stare into space. Facebook. Browse. Think.

You see, I have a first-world problem. Suddenly my time on the road has become exponentially high that I often wonder what should I really do in the car every day. A ten-minute ride morphs into a 90-minute one. One-way. It is, really, not pretty.

Okay, we all hate traffic. At my old job, I often wonder at my boss’ determination to go to work, although it requires him to travel two to three hours every day. One-way. That’s an awful lot of time spent in the car, don’t you think?

I fancy working near home. Or actually, I fancy working from home. Or from my local Starbucks at the very least. Because now that I’ve experienced it, let me tell you what traffic does to people.

1. It makes people tired.

Every single time. I still feel like not having enough sleep every single day.

2. It makes people easily irritated.

Seriously, you snap at the slightest thing. You become selfish and all you want is everyone’s tending to your needs as all your energy has been sucked out of you.

3. It makes people waste precious time.

Okay, if time is the most precious thing we ever have, and three out of 24 hours (that’s 12.5 per cent for you) are spent doing nothing (or worse, spent in giving us more headaches), who on earth will not curse traffic?

I think by this time (the third week), I have tried everything. Listening to music. Sleeping. Reading a book. Writing. Listening to podcast. Sleeping some more. Playing Candy Crush. Browsing.

Most have given me headaches, and as a low-energy person, traffic really does drain the life out of me.

All I want after reaching my home sweet home is a bottle of beer, my bed, a good movie, and a good night sleep.

My brain... Ah, my poor brain... Photo courtesy of AFP

I wonder how people survive traffic. Really. How they survive traveling, as most Jakartans spend anywhere between 45 minutes to three hours to get to work every day.

Really, I can get to Bali or Singapore with the same amount of time (although with different amount of cash).

And the headaches! All those cars honking, each is equally tired and eagerly wishing to be home. All those motorcycles, cutting the ways, trying to arrive at their destinations. All those public buses, angkot, bajaj, and taxis.

But anyway, how to survive the traffic?

I guess it’s by doing something useful – listening to an audiobook, podcast, or thinking about the solutions to your next project at work.

Or writing about traffic. Which is what I’m doing at the moment.

Sadly, my head’s already spinning a bit. Guess I’ll call it a day and retreat to my bubble.

Kirk out.


Photo courtesy of AFP