These days, waking up is an ordeal, several minutes after several snoozes of my alarm, I would still be in bed, trying to decide if I should get up or just call in sick, until I remember the saying “No food for lazy man!”
Aha! Food, I love food too much. After I manage to get up, I text my colleague to buy me jollof rice. The jollof rice ehn, no be play play. The hope of eating the jollof rice makes me want to get to the office on time. Did I hear someone say there is jollof better than Nigerian jollof? Don’t let me catch you o!
Anyways, traffic has been somewhat unfriendly, and so I have to shuffle between okada and buses. I have become an ardent traffic forecaster. I can look at the bus-stop and tell you where you are likely to encounter traffic. Speaking of talents…lol
So I left the house and could not find any bus to Iyanaba. Why? The bus drivers were on strike. The agberos in charge wanted to increase the daily payment, “owo loading” and “owo booking”…When I could not get a bus, I resorted to breaking the journey. I opted for keke and about thirty minutes later, I was at Iyanaba.
I took one look at the bus-stop and decided I would do okada today. I found a bike, donned my nose mask and scarf and the journey began. I was glad I had chosen okada. There was so much traffic, what caused it I cannot say. At a point, even the okadas were stuck in traffic.
We continued on to Mile 2 uneventfully. We passed the major roads and so apart from traffic here and there, there was nothing happening. I was able to steal a glance and noticed that the net was missing from the tyre-net house. How they are coping in this weather, I have no idea, let’s just hope that they have found a better place to stay. The tyres were still neatly stacked though.
Ehen, I saw one vehicle branded “Lagos Neighbourhood Safety Corps” close to Mile 2. Abbeg who those ones be again?
Anyways, from Mile 2, I continued on to Doyin. I got to the office in one dusty piece.
I left the office around 6:30pm and after waiting several minutes at the bus-stop. I got to Doyin and as the bahd traffic forecaster that I am, I studied the bus-stop and concluded the roads would be free. I decided to go the straight route.
I found a bus and was about to board when the conductor started shouting “Iyanaba Volks two hundred o…” You say wetin? I jumped down. Even those inside already got off. The fare was supposed to be a hundred and fifty naira at most, and according to reports, he initially said one-fifty to those who had boarded already. When he saw many people trying to get on, he increased the price by fifty naira. When he saw people getting off to other buses, nobody tell am, im head reboot, and he reverted to one-fifty.
I boarded and was flanked by two people munching furiously. The man on my left was eating corn, the lady on my right, oranges.
The man spread his legs wide, I asked him to sit properly so that we would be comfortable, he acted like the corn had plugged his ears and ignored me. Me ke? When gallop dey? I no talk o, as we reach the gallop, bus shake, me sef push am, leg close. What is my big bum for please? I learnt this trick a long time ago.
The two “munchers” were throwing either orange seeds or corn seeds on my feet. I just begged them to look at the ground before throwing anything. Soon after, the conductor began collecting his money and the man muncher had to push me to get this money out of his pocket. Men, but why? Please always take out your fare and phone before sitting. No be say una go come dey push us for inside tight bus because una wan pay money. Mschewwwww…
Just as we got to Abule-ado, a teenage girl sitting on her brothers legs screamed. We all asked what happened and she said her slippers fell off her feet, and the bus was on full speed. The mother was beside her and she immediately shouted “Whish slippers? I pray o…” it registered immediately that she was a Warri woman.
“Better con dan go find am o, something wey I buy 1700, and e never reach two months…”
Everyone burst out laughing, mostly because of her tone.
The daughter tried to explain that she was not balanced and that was why the slippers fell off. The mom again said “No worry, tomorrow you go balance with one leg. Agbalagba wey slippers go fall from im leg…I pray o…”
We were all busy laughing and when we got to the next bus-stop, the woman gave her children money to go back and find the slippers. We continued on until we reached Barracks and met the traffic of our lives. We got word the traffic went as far as Iyanaba. I got ready to alight and take okada.
I find okada sotayyyyyy, I no gree see. I saw people walking and decided to walk a little further before taking an okada. Na so I waka o, no okada wanted to go to Iyanaba. And so the trekking continued. Now, according to Google, the distance from Barracks to Iyanaba is 2.6km and that is seven minutes by car. Me wey don tire already, it took me about thirty-five minutes to walk down there. I was so scared walking, na so so man I dey see. So no woman was “gangster” like me? Wawu! I slung my bag across my chest while practicing some Kung-Fu moves in my head. I was busy walking leisurely until I saw a man sitting on the ground with so much hair on his head and face like a lion’s mane. The man was busy with a wrap of weed. I doubled up instantly, before lion go bite me.
Fortunately, I didn’t get to use the moves but by the time I reached Iyanaba, my feet were dead. I tried to cross the road and then one man just came in front of me from nowhere, eating orange and walking like the orange had alcohol in it. I moved away, only to hear one woman beggar say something in Hausa to her child. I didn’t understand what she said, but she obviously had told the child I was a likely giver because the child came for me.
Abbeg abbeg abbeg, u sef aunty, just leave me alone.
I was so tired aunty sounded like a curse to me. I finally crossed the road and got a bus to Okoko. As I was about to alight, my left leg hit a stone and my sandals cut. I was too weak to be angry. I dragged the feet like that because it was already too late to find a shoe mender. I could not even find slippers to buy.
While I was dragging myself to the park, a man saw me and started blabbing…
“Oh baby, if to say I don see you since, I for carry you. Fine woman like this, see your leg, e no suppose to dey waka for this kind place.
I rolled my eyes. Where was he when I was walking from Barracks to Iyanaba? Na so! Make I no waka for the road, make I waka for sky.
I didn’t even say a word. I stopped and he stopped too. He asked me to board the same bus with him. I just looked at the person talking, old man with black tees and one Baba Sala baggy jeans. He even had a big chain on…Wow! Tupac is alive…!
I just walked further and boarded a bus and made sure to sit where he would not get in beside me. I soon got to my bus-stop and dragged my feet to the house.
It was almost 10:27pm when I opened my door.