I love to travel; to explore new places and enjoy adventurous activities completely outside the norm. Being a very serious thinker, travel stretches my mind, broadens my horizon and helps me to think creative and original thoughts.
One of the top countries in the world to visit for me would be Italy – Venice being my number one place to go to, then Rome and Tuscany. I’ve only seen pictures but I love Italy – the history, peaceful environment, breathtaking landscape and romantic vibes. I hope to visit next year.
In Nigeria though, I have only been to 3 states outside of Lagos – Edo (where I was born although I can’t remember anything about the place), Ogun (because I schooled and lived there once) and Ibadan (family road trips). However, I look forward to visiting more states soon. With that being said, who wants to go on a road trip to Erin Ijesha waterfalls in Ekiti state this August? Been thinking of it since I saw Cassie Davies post. Comment down below and let’s do this!
Zoom into Lagos, aha! This is my zone. I’ve been out and about a lot, still, there are a few more places I would like to go to. I still can’t believe that I have not been to Tarkwa bay but that is about to change soon. The Apapa Wharf was one of the places I had always wanted to check out. I had heard of the tales – bad roads and trucks; nevertheless, and probably because my hero dad used to work there when I was younger, I was enthusiastic about visiting the place.
My ‘dream’ to visit Apapa soon came true when a business trip took me to the area last month. On my first trip, I excitedly conquered my fear of traveling on water and took a ferry. It was pretty cool, and thankfully, the sea breeze did not blow my wig off. I took the ferry for some days then decided to start going by road for some official reasons.
I don’t want to say this turned out to be the worst decision of my life but this turned out to be the worst decision of my life. Still, I think it was very important I took those road trips because they were eye-openers. For one…
Apapa roads are TERRIBLE! Not bad, TERRIBLE!
Before I jump into detail, I need to quickly state the very obvious pain in the ass – my gosh! Trucks!
Trucks are just everywhere in Apapa; even parked on bridges, and they constitute a very big nuisance. Worse still, many times, the containers on these trucks are not even properly secured!
My fear of ‘traveling’ to Apapa really began when I heard of a container that fell and crushed three brand new cars on a beautiful Sunday. Like what the heck though?! Then it hit home when on my way to work one day, another container fell and completely blocked the Apapa Wharf road for hours. I remember thinking to myself: these things can fall on anybody!!! Later that day, a not very nice colleague of mine said to me,
“Tosin, the risk of a container crushing your head is higher than that of the ferry capsizing.”
Who says that?
To crown it all, I am usually in a relax mode on my way home after work – music plugged in, eyes closed, in my fantasy world… but all that changed the first day I felt the car move while in a still position in traffic. Different thoughts ran through my mind like the possibility of an earth tremor before I realized that the bridge was shaking. Really moving!
I remember screaming in shock to the driver, “The bridge is actually shaking right now!”
Dude was like, “Ehn now.” (Nigerians really need to stop managing things or suffering in silence. We need to start demanding for out rights and safety).
Never in my years of studying engineering in the university did I ever imagine that I would literally experience a bridge tremble, not due to earthquakes or tremors but poor use. An oil truck with a capacity of 50,000 liters weighs up to a flipping 36 tonnes! Now, imagine hundreds of them packed on a bridge definitely not designed to carry trucks! Of course, it will shake.
The Nigerian government knows about this so I wonder why close to nothing has been done to get those trucks off and maintain the bridge. Thousands of lives are in danger everyday plying the Apapa Wharf bridge, and the engineer in me cannot help but face the truth that – that bridge is going to collapse one day if nothing is done.
Frankly, I don’t have the solutions in my head because I feel this is a major work that lies in the hands of the government. Still, I felt the need to share because until we know what’s up as citizens, there would be no motivation to promptly demand for our safety from the government.
Another interesting detail, an Uber driver allowed me to drive!
So what bad road experience have you had in Lagos? Comment below.