ACCRA, GHANA

A bad tro-tro day

June 16, 2014

Three girls from Bazil, China and Botswana joined me at school on Monday. Because of my three days experience in traveling around chaotic Accra I was going to be their guide. Their first day ended up being quite adventurous, when it comes to trotro rides.

On the way to school we boarded in a white trotro. The driver was in a hurry like every other driver in Accra. It feels as if they run on a formula competition or play a computer game. When some poor pedestrian is trying to cross the road, instead of cutting down the speed the cars accelerate.

Overtaking is also an extreme activity. The cars try to squeeze into one line when the road becomes narrower or they intend to turn. This time it looks like the drivers play the “chicken” game. Nobody is willing to retreat and give away their position till last minute. That day, our vehicle lost one of these battles, having as a result a little crash with a black fancy car. A man in a suit went out of the car looking cool. Of course they had to exchange details for the insurance companies. But it was not as simple as that. It took a lot of time to come in an agreement and we also deviated from our route. An hour later we eventually reached our destination. The newcomers were not complaining, just looking a little confused. I tried to explain that it was actually the first time that I had a trotro accident.

To my great surprise, the second time came fast. On the way back from the school, we boarded in a dark blue trotro with leather seats. The mate was diligently doing his duties. The rolling door was disobedient though, and all of the sudden … BOOM. The door went off the tracks and fell down with a thundering noise. Luckily noone was close to the trotro at the time and we had not gained fast speed. We instantly looked at each other with a fearful expression drawn in our faces. Next minute we bursted into laughter.

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