To put it Mexican, everyday is un poco loco – a bit crazy – in Lagos. Some days more so than others.
You need to be wilder than the Bronze Bomber to get your day started.
Something has to get you going: maybe a prayer, a mantra, or some good news.
And even so it could yet be short lived, depending on where your lines fall that day. You hit the road to be swallowed up by a discouraging trail of traffic sluggishly snaking its way from one rowdy bus stop, through a mindless congestion, and finally to a numbing work space with an overall depleted energy, where you and your work buddies are no more than exotic corporate menageries.
You forget what had you going – prayer, mantra and all. The frustration would have had you sassed back to average base.
And this is just the beginning of your day. But not even half as bad as it can get.
You see, your boss too might have had quite a horrible whirl navigating his way to the office. And since he reserves the mammonic right to heap a dump on you and ease the stress, you may yet realize why gods are best kept in faraway shrines.
So it would be that one day, having endured the nine-hour misery in the shank called Lagos, I rejoined the rowdiness at the bus stop. I was frazzled to a fag, and would give anything to be home already. My phone was in my left pocket as I lumbered along, struggled for minutes with the crowd, ran after buses and buses and eventually hopping on one, endured the tight, stinking pack in the small conveyors, and coming off at my destination half an hour later.
But my whole wilder than the Bronze Bomber attitude was about to be counter-punched.
I’d been robbed. My phone was gone. I came to a mental cul-de-sac.
The other passengers had dispersed. The bus was gone.
Honestly, nothing new or shocking. Everyone just empathised for a fraction of a second and forgot about me.
This is the stuff of Lagos – always un poco loco.