Lagos Drama: Danfo Fare Haggle
For a young lady that grew up in Lagos, it is quite funny that it took me years to realise that bus hopping was a needed survival skill in Lagos when I relocated to Lagos few months post NYSC.
I had difficulty in adjusting to the Lagos crazy life of bus hopping and sometimes I feel teary in the bus on my way home. With time, I have learnt to adapt to Lagos crazy drama that sometimes I even smile at how ridiculous people’s action/reactions can be.
Some weeks ago, I had waited at the bus-stop for almost 30 minutes without successfully boarding a bus because I couldn’t struggle enough with others to join the buses that came. Finally, another bus came and with determination I struggled this time to board the bus employing the bus hopping style. I was successful, sitting with relief and hoping to get to my destination soon. I was ready to pay any amount that the driver dictated be it outrageous or not. But my co-passengers wouldn’t have it.
At the bus-stop, while we struggled to board the bus, the driver announced the bus fare to be
N150 since he wants 3 passengers per row. We agreed and entered but by the time we all struggled to get seats in the bus, we discovered that the driver had accommodated 4 seats per row except the back/last row which had 3 passengers.
Driving forward a bit, the driver requested that passengers start to pay him and that’s how commuters began aluta oo. They said since the driver had accommodated 4 passengers per row, he should let commuters pay N100 for tfare as against the N150 he called earlier at the bus stop.
While words were being exchanged between the driver and the passengers as both parties tried to justify their rationale, I just kept quiet cause I was tired. I continued pressing my phone only to be jerked into reality with the bus’ sudden turn instead of moving forward.
I lifted my head/eyes from my phone to realise that the driver had made a U-turn to return the passengers to the bus-stop where we boarded the bus. He had already driven 35% of the route to our destination so I was shocked to see that he was actually taking us back to the bus-stop because of a
N50 disparity, meanwhile the normal fare for that destination was supposed to cost N100.
Heading back to the bus-stop, the driver roughly drove the bus in anger and to help his ministry that evening, the road was unusually free. I had my heart in my tongue😱 as I was so scared because of the insane speed at which he was driving.
I kept praying in my mind ‘God let me alight from this bus peacefully without hurt’. Thank God for answered prayers, I alighted before we even got to the bus-stop and with relief I walked back to the bus-stop as I laughed and spoke to myself about how crazy danfo drivers and Lagos people can really be. I have listened to public transporters threaten to take drastic actions but I have not witnessed one before. Witnessing this was crazy and hilarious😂😂.
See life oo, I eventually got another bus quickly and easily at the bus-stop for
N100. Quite a lot of times, this life does not go as we want or plan but the ability to keep hoping against hope helps to keep us fuelled in the journey of life.
Last weekend, I had an interesting and enlightening conversation with someone and she shared that it’s real and biblical that ‘before the real thing comes, a look alike of the real thing appears first, just like Ishmael came before Isaac”. Personally, I have noticed this pattern in the flow of life but I thought it was just something that exists in my head. I actively gleaned that it takes hope and patience to actually get the real thing and not the lookalike of the real thing.
Hey mon ami, ‘calm down’. Don’t lose your faith, hope and patience as you look forward to the real, bigger things. Your best is yet to come.
Have a lovely weekend lovelies. Je t’aime mon ami😘😘😘