Tag Archives: Lagos traffic

Lagos madness

It was a Friday. A family event was taking place that evening. I asked for permission to close an hour earlier to be able to participate in the event. 5:00pm, I drove out of my office on Awolowo road, Ikoyi. I should be home in two hours, I said to myself.

The traffic on third mainland bridge snaked all the way from the beginning to the tail end and I began to wonder if I would still make the journey in two hours. 7:00pm, I arrived at Bolade in Oshodi. I did a mental calculation. In an hour, I should get to Iyana-Ipaja.

8:00pm, I was still at Bolade. 9:00pm came and met me right on the same spot at Bolade, Oshodi. It had rained earlier that day and for those who understand Lagos; rain and Lagos roads are like sworn enemies. I was extremely tired and my feet were hurting. Driving a manual car in traffic a’int attractive. Movement was at snail speed and I kept switching off and switching on the engine to ease the stress on my feet.

In my tired state and my feet on the brake pedal, I lost traction and bumped into the car ahead of me. Oh Lord, not now; I thought. A man stepped out of the car. He looked at me and bent to look at his bumper. I tried to signal an apology to him but the man just turned and went back to sit in his car. I guess he was too tired to get into an argument. I immediately switched off the engine to avoid a recurrence.

“Hello ma’am, you look extremely tired. Can I join you and keep you company?” A guy who had been standing at the bus-stop with other passengers as they awaited a bus asked. I looked at him; a total stranger but at that point I needed company to stay awake.

I unlocked the passenger door and he eased into the car. He introduced himself and started talking about the traffic situation and various issues. I listened and his conversation kept me awake.

At about 10:30pm, some army men emerged from God knows where and decided to help our situation. They began to pass traffic and as we moved forward, we realized that some cars going towards Oshodi had decided to face oncoming traffic; thereby causing the total lock down.

As usual in Lagos traffic, immediately the army men passed their vehicle out of the traffic, they zoomed off leaving the rest of us to our fate. Moving ahead became a survival of the fittest game. Thankfully, I scaled through without a scratch. I got to the GRA Ikeja junction and we saw traffic still ahead of us. At this time of the night, I thought as I shook my head. I wondered if I should go ahead or make a detour. My new found friend asked what my intention was. After 3 hours on one spot, I was not ready for another long wait.

I turned into GRA Ikeja and manuveured my way through to Oba Akran through Mobolaji Bank Anthony way. It was a smooth drive and I was glad I took that decision. Driving out of Oba Akran, I decided to pass the inner Dopemu road parallel to the Lagos-Abeokuta express way. As we went on, we could see the tail lights of cars in slow movement on the express way. I smiled as I congratulated myself on the smart move. I dropped off my new found friend at his bus-stop which was on my way home and he was full of thanks. I was more thankful because his conversation actually helped me stay awake on the steering.

I arrived home at a quarter to midnight. The celebrator for whom I had closed from the office one hour earlier was already sleeping peacefully in bed.

——

Photo Credit: http://www.ABC7.com

Road Rage

As the yellow bus maneuvered its way dangerously through the snarling Lagos traffic, the passengers shouted. “Oga driver, take am easy, abeg oh.”

The driver turned a deaf ear and continued to weave his way as he faced oncoming vehicles. He was wearing a singlet which must have been white at some point. He retrieved a dirty rag from the dashboard and wiped the sweat on his face and neck intermittently.

“Driver, no be you we dey talk to?” An elderly woman shouted from the back of the bus.

“Wetin? If you wan drive, make you come down come drive.” He shouted and sneered back at her.

“Driver, driver!!!” Another woman shouted as a trailer drove towards them from the opposite end.

The driver refused to heed the word of caution and continued to drive ahead. Screams and shouts rent the air, while other passengers cursed.

A few metres away from the trailer, the driver made a sharp turn to the right in order to make way for the trailer. As he did, he bumped into a navy blue Toyota Prado. He immediately tried to swerve back to face oncoming vehicles but the trailer was yet to have a way through. The trailer driver spew expletives at him but the driver was undeterred.

“Driver, you no see say you don jam that jeep?” The man who was seated beside the driver said.

“Go see wetin happen for dia.” The driver said to the bus conductor.

The bus conductor alighted from the bus. He shook his head as he checked the damage done to the Toyota Prado. While at it, the driver of the car came out. He was wearing a red long sleeved shirt on faded jeans trousers. The man removed the sun shades he was wearing and assessed the damage. The back door on the driver’s side had been dented and it had yellow streaks on it.

The conductor looked at the man . “Sorry sir.” He pleaded.

“Oya, oya enter bus, make we dey go.” The driver shouted at the conductor as he ignored the driver of the Toyota Prado.

“You no go look wetin happen to the car?” The man seated beside the driver asked again.

“Oga wetin be your own? Na you get the car?” The driver asked him.

“Ah…ah.” The man exclaimed as he looked at the driver in astonishment.

The trailer driver continued to curse the bus driver as they were now at a standstill. The trailer driver could not move forward as the bus was blocking his way.

The man in the Toyota Prado was quiet all through. He went towards the back of his car and opened the boot. He took out the wheel spanner from the boot and walked to the back of the bus. He swung his hand and in an instant, glass shattered. He raised his hand again, shattering the second brake light.

“Ahn…ahn…” The driver came down from the bus hurriedly. “Wetin be this nau?” He said walking towards the man.

The man moved towards the front of the bus and swung his hand shattering the right side mirror.

“Driver, sebi you say you mad. You don jam person wey mad pass you.” The elderly woman in the bus said.

The man was walking towards the other side of the bus. He was about to swing his hand again when the conductor prostrated on the floor before him. “Oga, please. E don do. Please sir. Abeg, no vex sir.”

The man looked at the conductor and nodded his head. The driver was standing at a safe distance murmuring and assessing the damage done to his bus.

The man walked back to his car and dropped the wheel spanner in the boot. He shut his boot, walked quietly to his car, eased into it and drove off while the shocked passengers, the conductor and the driver looked on.

——
Photo Credit: http://www.techcabal.com

To Love and to Hold – Episode 7

Fadeke wasn’t as excited as she had been earlier. All through her trip home, she reminisced on what had taken place a few hours ago. The trip took longer than normal with the usual traffic accustomed to Lagos roads especially at peak periods. By the time she got home at about 7p.m, she was exhausted.

As she walked into her living room dragging her luggage, her mum jumped up from the settee where she sat watching a movie and screamed, “Fadekemi”.

Fadeke, on sighting her mother forgot her fatigue for the moment and ran into her mother’s arms. Her mother rocked her for a while before turning her daughter to the left and to the right as if checking if there was something amiss.

“Your arms are skinny and you have lost your “poff poff” cheeks. You obviously haven’t been eating well”. She said still turning her daughter around.

“Mum, I’m okay”. Fadeke said smiling.

“No, you are not. Look at how long your neck has grown and you have wells in them”.

“Mum!” She laughed. “I guess the exams really took their toll on me”.

“Well, you are home now and I am going to feed you fat before you go back”. She said leading her daughter by the hand. “Would you like to have a bath first? I have prepared your favourite meal”.

“Wow, you are the best, mum”. Fadeke said doing a little jiggle. “I’ll go take a bath first. By the way, where’s daddy?”

“He’s not back yet. He called a few minutes ago to say he’s on his way. Your brother is in his room and on the video game as usual”.

“Hmm….he’d never change”. She said as she ran up the stairs towards her room.

 

As Fadeke and her brother, Adeola sat at the dining table, their father walked in. Fadeke stood up and ran towards her dad. As she got to him, she knelt down half way before him before laying her head on his chest.

“How are you, darling?” Her father asked as he hugged her.

“I’m good, dad”.

“Have you been eating at all? You’ve lost weight”. Her father said taking a step backwards to look at her.

“Please tell her, sweetheart”. Her mother said walking into the dining room with a ceramic dish in her hands.

Fadeke laughed as she led her father by the hand into the dining room.

“Welcome dad”. Adeola said doing a little bow of the head.

“How are you?”

“Good, good”.

Mrs. Peters had placed the ceramic dish on the dining table and was smiling as her husband got to her and gave her a gentle kiss on the lips. “How was your day, my love?” He asked his eyes twinkling with love.

“It was okay. We were just about to have dinner. You walked in right on time”.

He winked at his wife. “Hmm….I can see Fadeke’s favourite”.

“Mum says it’s a welcome back home meal”. Adeola said sneering at his sister.

Batting her eyelids at him. “A pity it’s not your favourite”.

“Okay guys”. Their father said stopping the argument. “We are all glad that Fadeke is home so we would all have ikokore tonight to welcome her”.

To Love & to Hold 14

They all sat down to eat as Fadeke told them about the on-goings on campus. There were “oohs and “aahs” and in some cases they laughed so hard that Mr. Peters had to ask her to save the rest of the story for after dinner.

 

As Fadeke lay on her bed at night, her mind wandered back to Chinedu. What would he be doing? He had promised to call her every night and she was yet to receive his call. She sat up on her bed and switched on the bedside lamp so she could pick up her mobile phone. Just then, her phone rang and she looked at it and smiled.

“Hey you”.

“I thought you were not going to call me”. She said playing with the tail of her night shirt.

“I don’t break promises”

“I’m glad you don’t. I miss you already”.

“I do too baby. How was your trip?”

“Tiring. The traffic was crazy”.

“I can imagine”.

“When are you going home?”

“Probably weekend”.

Fadeke yawned into the phone and giggled. “Sorry”.

“You need to sleep. You are obviously tired”.

“Yeah, I know but I still want to talk to you”. She said stifling another yawn.

“Go to bed, darling. I’d call you tomorrow, okay?”

“Okay”. She said already dozing. “I love you”.

“I love you too. Take care of you”.

She drifted into deep sleep with all her thoughts on Chinedu.

Tochukwu sat on her bed in the hostel thinking. She could not take this anymore. She had tried to manage the situation for so long but she couldn’t any longer. She opened her wardrobe and thought about what she could wear. She had a few seductive tops and gowns. This was the time to pick out one of them. As she put on a very skimpy low cut gown, she looked at herself in the full length mirror. She knew she would be irresistible to any guy as the gown hugged her accentuating her bust and her curves. She put on light makeup, looked at herself once more in the mirror and walked out of the room with a mission to accomplish.

***********

The boys’ hostel was still rowdy as most of them were yet to go home for the holidays. As Tochukwu walked into the hostel, she started getting cat calls. She smiled at herself; she looked hot. She walked straight to Room 206 and knocked on the door.

“It’s open”. A male voice answered.

She adjusted the top of her gown so it could be very revealing before opening the door to let herself in.

“What? What are you doing here?” Chinedu screamed as he jumped out of the bed.

“I came to see you”. Tochukwu replied sitting down on the bed and crossing her legs so that her upper thighs were revealed leaving almost nothing to imagination.

“I haven’t asked you to sit down”. He said opening the door and looking to the left and to the right. “I hope no one saw you enter my room”.

She sneered. “What are you scared of?”

“Hey, you can’t come barging into my room. Do you understand me?”

Tochukwu looked away without saying a word.

“Do you understand me?” He said turning her face forcefully to look at him.

“What do you expect me to do? Sit down and watch while you flaunt your relationship with Fadeke in my face?”

“What do you want from me?” He asked pacing the room.

“You. I want you. How many times do you want me to say it?”

“And how many times do you want to hear this? I am not interested. Is it so difficult for you to understand?” He said stopping before her.

“But I love you”. She said holding him.

He yanked his hand from her grip and said, “I don’t. Get it into your head. Besides, weren’t you dating Kunle a few weeks back?”

“But you know it was because you refused me that I agreed to date Kunle”.

“So?”

“You are aware that Kunle broke up with me to date a jambite”.

“What has that got to do with me?” He asked in annoyance.

“I still love you, Chinedu. I can’t take you flaunting your relationship with Fadeke in my face”. She said standing up and bursting into tears. “Why are you doing this to me, Chinedu? Is it a crime to love you?”

To Love & to Hold 15

Chinedu paced round the room again and looked at her. She was sobbing uncontrollably. He hated this and was confused. He wasn’t going to fall for her antics no matter what. He walked out of the room leaving her as she stood sobbing.

***********************************************************************************

Tochukwu walked into her room sobbing. Chinedu had ignored her and even walked out on her. She sat on her bed and hugged herself. She remembered how she had been smitten by Chinedu when she came into school as a jambite. She had met him in the faculty building as she was also studying actuarial science. She had tried on so many occasions to catch his attention but he always looked too serious and never noticed her gestures towards him. She had even gone as far as finding out his room number. With that, she had decided that the only way she could get his attention was to pay him a visit. She had gone to his room pretending that she had missed her way and was looking for someone else.

She had been overjoyed that her plan had worked as they both got talking. Each time, she saw him in school from then on, she winked at him. Chinedu, on the other hand, would only wave back at her. Kunle had noticed her attitude and told Chinedu in plain English what Tochukwu wanted. But Chinedu had told him he wasn’t interested. When Tochukwu noticed that Chinedu wasn’t giving in to her, she had dressed seductively and decided to pay him another visit. She had met Kunle and Chinedu in the room and Kunle’s mouth had hung open as she walked in. To say Kunle was stunned was an understatement.

He had stood up immediately to introduce himself to Tochukwu and held her hands longer than usual in a handshake. Even though, she had stated that she came to see Chinedu, Kunle hadn’t been able to get his eyes off her. When he noticed that she shifted uncomfortably without saying the reason why she had come to visit Chinedu, he decided to excuse himself.

Tochukwu did not beat around the bush and had gone straight to the point. “I like you a lot”.

“Really?” Chinedu asked in pretence.

“Yeah, a whole lot”. She looked at him seductively.

“Okay?” He raised his brows trying to figure out where the conversation was leading to.

She stood up from the chair where she was seated by the reading table and sat by his side on the bed. She placed her hands on his thigh drawing imaginary doodles and asked, “What do you think?”

“I think you are very beautiful and need a good guy”. Chinedu replied standing up.

“Can you be that good guy?” She crossed her legs to reveal her thighs.

For a few seconds, Chinedu looked at her thighs and looked up straight at her, “Unfortunately, no”.

“But why?” She asked, her composure breaking down.

“You are beautiful; don’t get me wrong but it takes two to tango”.

“But I love you. Right from the very first day I set my eyes on you”. She cried.

“I’m sorry, Tochukwu”.

“Why don’t you give me an opportunity to prove it to you”?

“It’s no use”. He said standing by the window and looking out.

She walked up to the window and put her arms around him. “Chinedu, please don’t reject my love”.

“It won’t work, Tochukwu. Please understand”. He said removing her arms.

 

When Kunle came back to the room, he had looked at Chinedu expectant. “So, how was it?”

“How was what?” Chinedu asked.

“Don’t tell me you let her go just like that”.

“Kunle, are you okay?” Chinedu put his hand on his neck to check his temperature.

“Perfectly okay. You are the one who needs to be checked. That babe has been giving you the vibes for so long. She brings the whole package and flaunts it in your face and you do nothing. Damn!”

“So, you would have gotten her laid, right?”

“That’s what she wants”.

“I think she’s just obsessed”.

“Dawg, then become her obsession”.

“She’s all yours for the taking”. Chinedu said disinterested.

“You’re serious?” Kunle asked looking surprised.

“All yours”. Chinedu emphasized.

————

Photo credit: http://www.canstockphoto.com

Photo credit: http://www.gettyimages.com

The Unexpected Visitor

Anyone looking at her would assume she was in labour. Sweat beaded on her forehead as she panted; breathing in and blowing out air the next minute. She looked up at the air-conditioner which was blowing at full power. It made no difference.

Her colleagues sitting on each side patted her hands continuously. “We would soon be there”. Chinedu said. “Just hold on”. Amaka told her. She looked at their faces and parted the curtains of their staff bus. They were at a standstill. Tears pooled in her eyes. She tapped her feet continuously as if that would make the traffic disappear. “Oh Jesus”. She said.

The staff bus saw an opening and maneuvered its way out. In less than twenty minutes, the bus parked in front of their office. She jumped down the bus and ran into the office hardly acknowledging the greetings from the security personnel at the door.

She dumped her bag on her desk and headed for the restroom. As she sat on the toilet bowl, her tummy rumbled as if it knew that it was time to let go. “Thank God”. She said knowing fully well that she was so close to pooping in her panties.

IMPRESSIONS

It was a Monday morning. The sky was clear and the air was still. The weather looked perfect.

Mindful of the monstrous Lagos traffic, Dele had woken up very early to prepare for the day ahead. Today is the D-day; he had told himself. After series of tests and interviews attended the previous weeks, he had been given the job of an accountant in a foremost multinational in the country.

He was very happy with his achievement. Things were going smoothly for him. Being his first day at work, he thought of taking a taxi. He wanted to get to his new office composed. After waiting for about twenty minutes at the bus stop without sighting a taxi, he reckoned that he needed to change his mind about his means of transportation. He then decided to ride in a public bus. “I would have to look for a comfortable seat so I don’t get my shirt rumpled.” He thought.

As he was about to sit down at the supposedly comfortable seat, he got the first shocker of the day. A nail hanging loosely in the bus tugged at his shirt, tearing it. “Oh my God.” He exclaimed and hissed.

“My new shirt. What am I going to do? I can’t go back home. I can’t risk getting to work late on my first day.”  He thought of insulting the driver but that would not change the situation, so he decided to keep quiet. “I would have to put on my suit throughout the whole day.” He concluded.

Then the journey began. Just as he was still savouring the still weather, it changed all of a sudden. The skies grew dark and it looked like it would rain. “I hope I get to the office before it rains.” Dele thought as he looked at the dark sky through his window.

“Oga, I hope say your window dey work?” The woman sitting beside him asked the driver in Pidgin English. The driver grunted back a response.

About ten minutes later, the skies cleared and Dele was very happy.

Just then, the skies boomed with thunder and the heavens poured down. The bus unfortunately did not provide adequate shelter for the passengers and water started dripping on them. The bus leaked from various rusted points on the roof. Most of the passengers hissed and cursed.

“Which kain thing be dis now?” The woman beside him asked no one in particular in annoyance.

“Driver, are you not going to use your wipers? Dele asked the driver.

“Oga, my wiper just spoil today. I no no say rain go fall, no vex.” The driver replied.

Dele couldn’t believe what he had just heard. The driver was actually driving the bus without windscreen wipers. What was happening to him on his first day at work?

He got down at his bus stop and tried to find a place to hide until the rains stopped but he could not find one. The rains refused to abate and he was totally drenched. With his suit in his hand, he decided to flag down a bike to take him to work. There was nothing he could do. He was going to create a bad impression of himself on his first day at work.

Impressions

As he got to the gate of his office building, he saw his boss’ car drive in. He had been introduced to him during his final interview. “This is it.” He thought. How was he going to face his boss all wet and drenched on his first day at work? He could try drying himself with the air drier in the gents. He looked at himself and shook his head. This was beyond an air drier.

On getting to the reception, he introduced himself as a new staff. “Drenched on your first day at work?” The receptionist giggled.

He was about to speak when he heard his name. “Dele, how are you? Welcome to the real world.” Mr. Brown, his boss said. He was not aware that his boss had come in and that he was already standing behind him.

“I was also drenched on my first day at work. So, there’s no need to bother about what impression you make. Right?” Mr. Brown continued as he smiled.

“Yes…yes sir.” Dele stammered.

“Now go dry yourself up in the gents, then I will take you to your office so we can get down to the business of the day.” Mr. Brown concluded.

“Whew! What a day.” Dele mused as he walked towards the gents.