Once upon a time, my mum sent me and my sister to the bank. Luckily, the bank is a short walk from the house. So we walked to the bank. We stood in line and waited our turn.
About 5 minutes after we got there, one of the bank security guards came in and asked for the owner of some car to go repark. I think it was a Benz. Can't remember. Anyway, I looked at my sis and said;
ME: Is that not our car?
SIS: Gimme key, let me go and repark.
ME: The key is with you, just give the guy let him repark for us.
Obviously, we were kidding -_-
Still...Cars, or the lack of them, have a way of bringing out the 'crazy' in you. Cars are so awesome, I suppose. I don't own one. Yet. But I've heard they're pretty awesome to have.
When you've got a car, I assume life is easier on you On the other hand, if you don't have a car, going out involves too many thought processes. too many.
Time ------> First, you think about the time. You figure that you have only ten minutes to take a shower. Ten for make up. Twelve to get to the busstop. Another ten minutes for the bus to arrive. You budget fifteen minutes for traffic and for all the stops the bus will make to pick his passengers. Fifteen minutes to walk or take a bike to where you're going. You realise that you would have missed the meeting by the time you get there. So you make a call and let them know you can't make it.
However if you have a car, you can decide not to even take a shower. The AC in your car won't let you sweat. Put on some perfume and if you know the shortcuts, you get there before they even start the meeting.
CLOTHES -------> If you take a survey, you'll see people in naija without cars don't really have white coloured clothes. Wearing white on lagos roads and in lagos buses is not very wise, because when you get back home, it's not white anymore. Sometimes, you get dressed up to go out and then by the time you get out of your first bus, your designer shirt that you took about 30 minutes to starch and iron is rumpled.
Chics with cars do light make up and still look fresh by the time they get whr they're going. You without car do heavy make up with blush and the works. Still, you look like a homeless person when you get where you're going. You realise you should have just bathed and gone to work, or better still, taken your bath at the office.
Chics cant even wear low-rider pants or tight skirts because they're not okada friendly. (I guess this is a good thing?).
If it happens to be a rainy day, you have to wear black or grey, because there's a big chance a car will splash water on you. Even bicycle can splash water on you.
If you got a car, you don't even need to dress up too much. The car is already designer clothing. I wonder if I'm the only one who has noticed that guys in cars wear palm slippers almost everywhere... and get away with it.
LAPPERS SOCIETY ------> Too many times, I've seen a situation where one woman comes into a bus with about five children. And somehow, she intends to sit herself and her kids in one seat. God help you if you end up siting next to her. She'll push about two of the children onto your laps without asking. Then she thanka you. I have never seen anyone refusing to help. It doesn't matter if you're dressed for a date and they're dressed in dirt. It doesn't matter if you don't like children. It just doesn't matter.
People in their cars don't have to stop to lap anyone. They don't even have to stop to give anyone a lift if they don't want to.
CHEDDAR----------> It's a bit ironical, but if you don't have a car, you must have money. I've seen many sad situations where someone calculates their trip to and fro and they're short by about 40 naira, or something. Sometimes, the fare would have changed and your budget is not sufficient. You can't cry. You can't beg. You start to trek. Trek for your life. Sometimes, people go in the bus anyway and beg the conductor. The conductors curse and insult you like your life isn't sad enough already.
If you got a car. If you still have fuel from two days ago, you don't need to have any money to get where you're going. Really.
Sigh...there's so much to consider when you're living the no-car life. To make it worse, when you ask for directions and they ask - "Are you driving?" The feeling of pain in the first five seconds when you have to say no and they give you bus/okada directions.
Sometimes, you have to rush and push people to enter bus because there aren't many buses. You find that whatever rep you might have had before has to be thrown out the window.
However, everything in life has its pros and cons right?
We get more exercise. All the pushing. All the rushing. All the trekking. They lead to toned abs and muscles. Whether or not they are voluntary. And a toned body means a healthy body.
When you use public transport, you get to meet kind people. One time, when I was about 13 or 14, I forgot my transport fare at home and I was so embarrassed because before that day, I used to form. One woman next to me paid my fare. No kind people in cars.
Some guys set their best P in the bus. They be like; "Baby can I get down at your bus stop with you."
You have no idea where you might meet your wife or husband. It's a bit hard to make friends if you have a car. Okay thats a lie.
I dont have a car. Yet. But I'm crazy happy I have legs.
One day I was walking and the sun wasn't very nice to me, and I was a bit annoyed. Then I saw this old man sitting by the road. His legs were bad. He looked very unkempt and alone and he was looking at his feet. I looked too. His toes were bleeding. My heart broke. I have a home. I have strong, healthy legs. I have a bed. I have a family. And I'm worrying about the car I don't have?
I prayed for him and thanked God for the bus I was about to go and hustle.
Yours truly, Rantalot.