One of my many observations was the flow of the transportation system. The roads in some places were rougher than the most rural roads you can find in the US. About half of the drivers were on motorcycles and the other half were in a car of some sort. Actually Toyota is by far the vehicle of choice in Benin City, Nigeria.
You have these rough roads, with stretches of decent roads and you have people that drive like New York City cab drivers after drinking a couple of 5-hr energy drinks. You have lots of people walking around and to top it all off “Pedestrians Don’t Have The Right-Away.” In other words if you are walking across the street, near the street, have a child in your arms… you will get honked at and plowed over by a vehicle if you don’t hurry up and get out of the way. It’s actually crazy.
I talked to my friend Ayo who was on the trip with me about the driving situation. 5 years ago Ayo moved from Nigeria to Atlanta and he said it’s crazy for people in the US to think that they can walk in front of a multi-ton steel machine and think that the machine should stop for them. He said that’s actually crazy.
The craziest thing about the crazy driving situation in Nigeria is the fact that I didn’t see any wrecks, I didn’t see anyone giving someone the bird because someone honked at them or cut them off, I didn’t see anyone get hit by a car and driving was an ends to a mean and people didn’t really get emotional about it one way or another. This whole system was crazy to me; however I began to see how normal it was.
Once I returned to my home in suburban USA, I watched the news and saw an incident that happened at a Super Target Store not far from my home. According to news reports two vehicle drivers got involved in some type of road rage incident that led the men to meet in a Target Parking lot. One of the men (57 years old) confronted the other (29 year old) man, pulled out a gun shot and killed him. The 29 year old was going to school to be a Doctor.
Please draw your own conclusion… I’ll simply end this post with these words.
When Crazy Is Normal
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