It’s after 8 pm, and I’m in an Ikeja-bound danfo bus. Now, as anyone who’s had the “pleasure” of using public transport in Lagos can attest, the ride may prove trying, but it’s never boring. This night is no different.
So there we are on the expressway service lane, and we’re making slow progress: some traffic has built up on our lane and irritation’s building up in the bus. (This time of night, that tends to take the form of low muttering noises.) I’m sitting by the door, my earphones on but low enough to let in ambient sound – a useful security measure, I’ve found. There’s no conductor.
From behind me a large woman points out, loudly, that a smart driver would know better than to stay on the service lane when the main one seems freer. She carries on for awhile, seconded by two or three others, but the driver doesn’t answer a word.
About five minutes later and a few hundred metres more, we roll past Palmgrove bus stop – a frequent bottleneck – and the road suddenly (but not entirely unexpectedly) frees up. As far as we can see, it stays free.
But only on our lane.
The driver is still quiet. By now, so also are his self-appointed advisors.
If you know what you’re doing, who says you’re obligated to convince naysayers?