At Jabi motor park in Abuja, “I get the type of you for house”, he shouted at me. I didn’t say a word back. I just hissed a lengthy hiss.
How can I forget that thing that we used to do when we were children growing up? So, I literally opened my eyes wide and worked my widely opened eyes up and down very quickly for one and half seconds. Good thing, I beat people. With my eyes.
Take that! I roared. But in my mind, of course.
Anyways, I had now finally had enough of this man and his typical male ego none-sense! This man, this particular oga driver is so determined to display driver craze and me I am so not ready to exchange words with him. Something needed to be done. And it had to be something drastic.
Hence, I gave him the back of my head. But I made sure to first look him straight in the eye, tell him firmly, one more time, I will not collect my Naira change in half. That I want complete change of the transportation fare I paid.
Oga driver hesitated a few seconds before he eventually stormed off very upset. Some will continue to fuss and chatter regardless. But, surely not a man with a very ripened ego as this driver. If anything, I know that this driver will not speak to the back of any head, let alone the back of the head of a woman, the type he said he has in his house. In fact, I have the feeling that, before oga driver stormed off, he stared at me in an angry way. You know the type of staring that you do with your eyelids partially lowered? Something tells me he stared at me that way.
Okay, so all the while I was conscious that my children were watching me and this driver. I even noticed that they were unusually attentive. But, I hoped deep down inside me that they were taking mental notes too.
Mummy is teaching and demonstrating a very vital lesson here: stand up for yourself.
About five minutes passed before oga driver came back into the driver's sit in the car. He seemed calm. He gently explained to me that he will give me my complete change during the two and half hours trip to Minna but it would be after he buys fuel from the fuel station.
Another thing that happened
Approaching Zuba, oga driver suddenly stopped driving the car and decided to park by the side of the road. I honestly thought something was wrong with the car. Instead, oga driver started searching through all the compartments in the front of this small red Volkswagen Vento 1990s series car we were crammed in (see photo above). All of us in the car were quiet and watching.
Then without any apologies, oga driver went on loudly; “let me check this my paper sef.” And continued to talk to himself. By now he was already looking at the papers he managed to pick out from the compartment.
“Okay, e never espre (expire) sef.”
“Ah! abi e don espre?”
He slapped the papers with his five manly fingers twice to put them straight; kpam! Kpam!. I pitied the papers. But then he continued to examine them closely.
I swear we all watched on. Is this even normal? I don’t even know how it was possible that none of us in this car said a word, not an insult either! Nigerians are not known for being very patient. Are we?
In any case, me I was already thinking that maybe oga driver doesn't see well or he cannot read. Or both. Seriously it looked like the car would remain on the spot for who-knows-how-long but long; going by the way oga driver had now began to not act. The papers in his hands were already almost touching his nose.
“E go expire 2nd of January.” The man sitting in the front sit next to him bailed us out. Finally!. “Oh! Okay.” Oga driver muttered with relief.
Even as I write this, I still wonder how that man was able to see the date that oga driver had been looking for and could not find.
Something else that happened
“Let me see your driver’s licence”, the officer demanded. “How work sir,” oga driver responded. “Show me your licence”, the officer repeated. “How work sir”, oga driver said again.
Surely our driver does not have ear problem as well? Or does he? I thought to myself.
Then a second Vehicle Inspection Officer approached the car. This officer demanded oga driver should turn off the car’s engine. Which he did. Officer two yet demanded for oga driver’s licence. And it was at this point that oga driver handed him a piece of paper with another piece of paper attached to it.
“This is your licence?!” officer two shouted. “Insha Allah” oga driver said effortlessly.
“This is not your licence!”, officer two shouted. Oga driver did not even bat an eye at this announcement. This was not a revelation to him, I am sure.
“Vehicle particulars. Your vehicle particulars, give me” a now visibly annoyed officer two continued.
“E dey your hand sir” oga driver answered. “Ha!”, officer two finally exclaimed after shaking the two sheets of paper in his right hand.
The first officer at this point chipped in and asked the driver, “what of the overload?”.
Both officers then asked oga driver in a typical Nigerian officer hasty manner to come out of the car. Two vehicle inspection officers and oga driver now discussing by the side outside the car.
Oga driver returned into the car to wrap 500 Naira in a paper and said something like (if I recall correctly) he hopes the officers would accept. Another 10 minutes after, oga driver came back into the car smiling. Then he said “hmm, sebi December don come.” Sort of like saying blame it all on December. but what has December done wrong now?
Anyways, we survived the bad road condition and arrived Minna’s Abdulsalam motor park (named after Nigeria's former Head of State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar). And in one piece, even though, dusts particles settled on our eyelids and eyebrows.
We drank paracetamol; 10ml liquid paracetamol for each of the children and two whole tablets for me. Hahhahahahahaha!
I hope the new year so far has been treating you well? Happy new year again, beautiful people :-)
Let’s meet here again,
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