It was the time of the day when the call for the Friday prayer was going off any second. The junction was at the main road to the mosque. Busses and cars started hitting their horns and people on bikes and on foot started swarming over the accident. The driver of the Viva, a middle aged man, came out of the car. I couldn't get out.
The din was getting louder. The Viva driver asked me to pull out my car. I complied and he moved his car to the side. I came out to inspect the damage. The driver asked me why I 'suddenly' moved into the road and hit him. I was puzzled because I was in the middle of the road and he must have come from behind so how could I have banged into him. He 'proved' it saying since I was on the left and his car was on the right, so automatically he had the right of way and I was wrong.
Right of way my foot!
He was cutting que!
He banged into me!
I told him that.
He said he was disappointed because not only I did not apologize but I was 'berlagak' [outspoken]. He said it was clearly my mistake.
I stood my ground and I told him he was cutting que.
He asked me to go with him to the police station to make a police report.
I said fine!
I lead the way to the traffic department but the building was locked. I assumed it was closed for the Friday prayer.
The man suggested we go the the main police station in another part of the town. When we got there, we were told that we have to go the the traffic department and that the office was moved to another building.
As I was getting into my car to go back to the traffic department, I thought the man wanted to make a negotiation.
I listened to him.
Again he put the blame on me. I couldn't accept it and said so to him. He invoked the name of Allah to say that he was innocent, blameless. That it was totally my fault for banging him on his left side.
I too said in the name of Allah, I knew I was not wrong. That I was 'driving' on my right place on the road and that he was the one cutting que and hit my right front tyre.
I said I agree to disagree with him and will not make any police report or claim from his car insurance. After all, there was only a slight scratch on my bumper and his left passenger door.
The man wouldn't accept my truce and insisted I apologize to him.
He said he needed to go for the Friday prayer and asked me to meet him at the traffic department about an hour later.
I left without saying anything. I knew I have 24 hours to report an accident.
I went home. I didn't even get his car number.
Called my brother to go to the police station with me after Friday prayer. There were two traffic officers around. I told them what happened to me. They advised me it was a case of 'cutting que'. So I decided to wait for the man to make the report first.
Apparently, he never turn up at the station.
I wasted my whole Friday afternoon.
I should have left the moment I decided not to pursue the matter.
O'well, this is the very first time I got into this kind of situation. Although I was convinced I didn't bang into the car, still I was not familiar with the 'legality' of the situation. I didn't want to 'commit' any unnecessary offence.
Well, I learned a lesson on my 49th birthday!