The rules of the road here in Manila (and in the provinces, as well, as I have discovered) are simple: there are no rules. My boss phrased it best: whoever has the biggest car and/or oldest car wins. Needless to say, I have had many heart attacks thus far concerning the lack of road structure. And the traffic. The traffic is comparable to that of LA’s–even worse (according to someone who actually grew up in the LA area).
My first day in Manila, I learned quickly that there is no regard for pedestrians. Crossing the road requires that one take deep breaths, pray, and close his/her eyes to sprint across the street with hopes of making out unscathed. I was initially shocked by the lack of concern for pedestrians, but have now come to gain a new appreciation for it–in the wild, the biggest, toughest animal wins, with the smaller ones working their lives around them. So, why not on the road? Lesson learned.