Thursday, 5 October 2017

LS2 - DON'T LOOK BACK!

Posted by Oyinlola Sobowale on Thursday, October 05, 2017 in , , | 11 comments
Are you familiar with the story of Lot's wife? Remember it? When God wanted to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah for its many sins, He heeded Abraham's plea and allowed Abraham’s nephew, Lot and his family to escape but with a strict warning to them NOT TO LOOK BACK. Lot’s wife looked back however and was instantly turned into a pillar of salt :-( 

Quite chilling outcome huh? 

June 2, 2017

I wish my instructor had sounded this exact warning to my hearing during my driving lessons. Barely a week after I brazed Lagos roads I made a trip to Sango Otta with my colleague. We had gone to the factory to carry out some tincture preparations. Drove to work in my usual fashion, going through service lane half the way then the almighty Ikorodu road. Anyway, everything was fine till we had to go to Otta. Of course, I could not drive long distance so we requested to be chauffeured by one of the company drivers. The journey to Otta can be likened to a journey to Jericho - not like I've ever been there but you get my drift...faaaar and that road is plagued with too many manholes (just like most part of Lagos except for the Banana Islands and ilks). We delved into work as soon as we reached the factory because my colleague like me, was eager to return to civilization but we never envisaged the task would take up so much time.Several glitches along the way but thankfully, we were done by 4.

The drive back was pretty smooth and fast and we were in Ikeja axis by 6pm.

"UK I think I'll come down at this bus stop before you guys make a detour to Computer Village. It's easier from here to Maryland then home," I said suddenly

"Ahan...my friend let's get to the office now, it's just 6'O Clock you can still make it home in good time".

"Nah. Let me just come down here," I repeated 

Meanwhile in my head, I kept calculating how much longer it would take to get to Kudirat Abiola from where we were to making a U-Turn into the office building, parking the car and me having to drive out again. Guaranteed that would take about 30 minutes pushing the time to 6.30ish. I would need about another 40 minutes to get home, further pushing it into the nights. No way! I wasn't having any of those!!

"Babe, let me come down abeg. I'll pick my car tomorrow".

"But no work tomorrow now, how you wan do am?"

"I know na. Will be there to pick up in the morning. I'd rather spend extra time to pick up in broad daylight than risk driving at night". I finished without batting an eyelid.

 They let me off, not without a laugh though and I got home a few minutes before 7pm - the sky still quite clear. Oh well, I wasn't ready to take the risk...

August 29, 2017

Since I started driving, my ideal closing hour had changed to 5pm and I always aim to leave at that time or at the latest, 5.45pm but you know how these things work. Your plans just develop wings and turn out differently, of their own volition. 

One of such unpredictable days, I had gone out of office again - this time with my HOD to hold a site meeting in preparation for a product launch. We had gone to Lekki a little past midday with hopes to breeze through meeting in 30 minutes then return. We got lucky and finished off in no time. Headed back to the mainland and got stuck in Ikeja axis in an annoying sent-from-the-pit-of-ajangbadi traffic. The office was only some 2km away but we could not move. Too shy to voice my driving challenges, I sat through the wait with my boss and prayed for a quick intervention. She instructed her driver to take another route but we still ended up in the office late. 

I went in to my car, packed my stuff. Locked the doors. Checked to be sure they were locked. Double checked. Called Uber and had a heavy meal(cold lunch) while I waited for my ride to arrive... 



Spot the name...my first and only female Uber driver till date. 

What an irony!

You see? Even life has a way of taking a swipe at us! Why did my request have to produce a female driver? She wasn't even driving a small vehicle but Honda Jeep and she drove excellently.

September 27,2017

Shortly after life mocked me to my face with an expert day/night female driver, I worked late into the night again but this time around, I chose to drive home :-)

No jumping buses. No taking buses halfway then switching to yellow taxis. No Uber. No driver. No driving companion. Just me (super woman).

I remember praying and cursing in one breadth. Every time a fellow road user flashed his headlights I cursed. They never told me I couldn't see through the mirrors. I guess this is the golden rule for night drivers; #donotlookback particularly for newbies like me. 

Two things happened that night:


Took me a while to figure out how to turn off
Blinding lights
P.S I only take pictures in traffic 
I didn't know how to use the headlights so I kept calling DH for guide and emotional support.








Please don't ask me how this happened...but yeah, only my window and side-view mirror took the bashing. I didn't even stop to talk stories. Drove off like nothing happened.

P.S: Dialogue has been paraphrased to suit this story but I did my best to capture the essence of what was said.



Till my next #LearnerSeries XoXo
Reactions:

11 comments:

  1. Thing is, you really need to brace yourself for whatever comes as long as you term yourself a learner. I had to do a rework on my car after I passed that stage. If I tell you I never hit anyone but got bashed left right and center as long as I had that L sign on my car.

    No need leaving your car at work and jumping buses or UBER, just brave it up and become the next schurmarker.

    I'm loving this Learner's Series, Oyin.

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    1. I can so relate to the bashing left, right and centre. Dumped my 'L' sign a week or so after when I noticed some drivers were taking undue advantage.Lagos is clearly not the best of places to use one. If not other road users, police sef go wan extort you.

      Slowly but surely, amma be the next Formula One driver :-) ;-)
      Thanks for always always stopping by.

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  2. Jeez! Thank God for his mercies!

    Driving in Lagos takes lots of guts and once you are good, you are good.

    Just keep at it and don't stop.

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    1. Thank God.

      Aiming for that A+ level my sister. I won't stop. Osheeeey

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  3. Pele dear, kept wondering where the story is heading.

    Keep at it,don't let fear hinder you,in a twinkle of the eye ,you are a pro.they should not bash that car again oooo cos my package is still there.lolz

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  4. Well ...Oyin you are trying ooo...I am a man and I am still scared of driving on Lagos roads. My office is at Ikeja and I don't drive except on Saturdays (and to church on Sundays). Anytime I see those crazy blinding lights from other cars, my liver dey cut ni... Keep at it ehn...I am sure you will soon be super good on Lagos roads...cheers!

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    1. Weekends only? I feel you though. Some days can be so damn frustrating, other days I just cruise.

      How have you been? Cheers

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  6. If you are driving in the streets of Lagos- Nigeria, by and large- you have to pretend as though you were the only sane driver and all others are cray... this is to probably show that one can't really be too careful.  

    A friend who had been driving all his life...since his teens, from Lagos relocated to the USA at 32, he failed his driving test/class about twice before he was eventually given the license. 

    Sis, I appreciate your being careful o. U can not come and go and kee yasef. But with time, u sef go be like Angela Jolie for driving as she is in the movie, 'Wanted'. Seen that?
    Sha be safe, abeg.

    Keep it up! 1 luv.

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    Replies
    1. True that BM, drive as though you the only sane one! These fellow road users be literally driving one insane.

      Not seen Wanted. Will sheckitrout. Many thanks for the continued moral support.

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