Last week, I turned my nose up and told my sister i would never.. lai lai.. me ke.. never take the coach from London to NewCastle. I planned to scrape any extra I had to take the train oh, I did not mind, anything but having to endure that 6hour ride with those old people ( ever noticed the north east of England is predominantly occupied by old people?? my own statistics anyway!) I shuddered at the thought.
Lailai.. never me ke!
This same me.... I have just returned from a 12-hour trip from Port Harcourt oh!!!!!
The suffer of this weekend does not have part 2.
I did not quickly make up my mind to go for this wedding, by the time I decided to go the air fares had gone sky high and right now im thinking in the Sterling. So in my mind, the trip to PH by air would have cost me at least 250pounds.. taxi to and from the airport inclusive! So i decided.. very grudgingly.. to go by road. The worst of road travel in Nigeria is in those contraptions called 'Luxurious' buses, those things are by no means luxurious and I was not about to point it out to them oh!So here I was going to PH on friday evening, by road... night bus!!! So i figured, I'd get to the 'garden city' by 7 am, take a shower, tong my hair, get dressed, look pretty and go for the wedding. I had it all planned that by sunday morning, I'd be back in my house, in Lagos, right??? nope.. very wrong.
Everything that could go wrong went wrong. The bus company decided that they were going to leave at 4.30pm! I was surprised, i should have taken that as a cue that all was not going to be well oh, no.. (im dim like that sometimes) i proceeded to buy the 5k ticket to Port Harcourt via ABC transport 'your passport to service' ( whatever that means!!!!!!!!!). Anyway, I'd had a hectic morning and before we got to Shagamu I was in snooze land. This was just fine by me, I did not mind waking up and hearing that we were in PH. At about 10.30 pm, my aunty nudged me awake, we had arrived in Benin and the bus was stopping. We all got out for the routine stretching of legs and those who felt the need to eat at night did so. We got back into the bus and once again, I slept. I woke up 6 hours later and guess what????
We were still in that stop over place in Benin!!! I could have fainted right there and then.
The frigging bus company apparently have a policy that they dont travel at night!!! Can you imagine?? I was on a night bus that was not going to travel at night?? i mean ..wharraaaaheeeelllll????? Ok we don hear.. oya make una come make we begin the waka from Benin to PH na?? they had to go and wake the driver from wherever he was sleeping oh. So he sha finally came and we got to PH at 11.30 am!!!! I was tired, angry, cranky and definately not in the mood to celebrate with anyone oh!
Because of the way I'd scheduled my trip, everything I brought along for the trip was in my hand bag, not so for my aunty who decided to come with a .. what can i call it now.. a 'portmanteau'. She now decided that she was going to the church service from the ABC station oh, to cut the long story short she left me saddled with her 'portmanteau'. Let me quickly describe this box. You know those little boxes that chics who go on quick weekend trips pack their things in? those boxes have been personified to be "short time boxes" So there i was in PH... with that box. I just felt so wrong carrying that thing!
Next problem, where would I change out of my jeans? I went to the hotel where my brother and sister-in-law were and I showered there. Im sure I spent almost an hour under the shower.. I needed to wash Benin off my body na!
So I dressed up and had to go take a cab to the wedding reception venue, standing in front of the hotel, in my dress, all made up and with that annonying box in my hand .. i was the definition of all forms of cliches gone bad!!! I just felt wierd!!!!
It was a horrid feeling.
The wedding went well and I was just too tired to take the night bus. So this morning, I decided to come by another bus company.. Agofure Motors!
This was a smaller bus with airconditioning, i thought, this should not be bad.. I was soo wrong.
I sat on the back seat, and the shock absorbers of the bus were either non existent or were badly eroded, because.... i felt every single tremor, shake and quake of that bad nasty road. For 12 hours I was jiggled and juggled. I felt the rattling of my bones, sleep sef no fit come. This return journey was worse than the coming. At least I got to sleep in Benin for 6 hours of the 19hours on the road! The driver was unrepentant, he said there was no way he could avoid the monstrous pot holes on the road. With every pot hole or crater... my bones rattled. To make matters worse, my period came... I dont blame it. Im sure my uterus quaked with every movement of the bus. Poor matter....
My aunty, in attempting to be sympathetic said.. " You need to get used to these things".. If you see the venom with which I used to reply.. lai lai .. me i can not get used to suffer head o! if no be sey money yab man.. chei
lai lai me ke????
So now really, who am I to say I cant take the coach from London to NewCastle??
National Express here I come!!! what is a few annonying stops at service stations and annonying old white women trying to show you the pictures of all of their 13 grandchildren when ive endured far worse? and i did not break??
Lai lai.. me ke!!!