Downtown Balogun Market 1998         #dramatic  #realitiesoflife   #Lagoslifeinthenineties #dangerandthreat  #streettrading

Badalla had been stuck in the traffic for close to two hours. All the window glasses were rolled down in the yellow and black striped Peugeot 504 saloon taxi. The temperature was sky high and the extreme humidity made matters worse. It was downtown Balogun market area. There were no alternative routes to get out of the area. The only route was via Apongbon Street to connect Eko Bridge and get back to mainland. It was bumper to bumper traffic. What caused the traffic wasn’t too clear. The driver, Bolade had turned off the engine of the car for the sixth time. He will wait patiently for the next 10 to 15 minutes when the traffic will inch about ten metres forward before it stopped again. Bolade rummaged through the glove compartment of his taxi looking frantically for some item. He did not seem to find what he was searching for. His search became more desperate. He looked under the front passenger seat of the vehicle and could not find it. He brought his voluminous body out of the car and stood on the main road and crouched to look under his driver’s seat. This was so dangerous. Did he realise how dangerous this was? To pop out of a vehicle on a main road even though the vehicles were stationary. What if a motorbike or bicycle crept up on him? What if there was sudden movement? Badalla did not say anything. Bolade, pulled out a face towel from under the seat and struggled to bring his large frame out of his vehicle and squeeze himself back into his vehicle. The space between his cab and the car next to his car was so small. He snuggled himself back to his car and continued to wipe the perspiration from his face using the large configuration of his palm. Then like out of a trance, he remembered that he now had the blue face towel.  He wiped the perspiration from his face and neck and chest. He had unbuttoned the first three buttons of his short sleeved shirt to invite in any sort of air.

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