It’s a Friday and most of the people are excited because it’s a start of the weekend. But as others are turning on their happy modes and whistling happily, some of us are truly annoyed about going back to our homes in Mukono.
Going to Mukono on Friday brings in so many irritations; first the place is far from Kampala and coupled with the traffic jam, a journey that starts at 5pm may end at 9pm. There is something about Friday that gets everybody moving and at the Mukono stages it is worse. The fares will shoot up from 2500/= for taxis to 3000/= or even 4000/= and from 2000/= for coasters to 2500/= or 3000/= I wish I could find work in Mukono because I seem to be exhausting my salary on transport.
I hate travelling to Mukono especially now that KCCA moved our stage from Constitutional Square [better known as city square] to the old park but by 7pm on Friday, you won’t find a single one. I just have a feeling that whichever heads out of town by 3pm never heads back because they know the drama involved in getting back to the Kampala after 5pm.
So you slowly walk from wherever you have been to get to the old park knowing pretty well that no amount of speed will get you to Mukono in an hour. And when you get there, you are not the only one heading to home; there is a crowd you don’t care to count but a single glance records about 200 people. Now you know your misery is just starting because the fight that follows the arrival of a single coaster reminds you of mob justice.
Passengers will do anything to get a seat on these vehicles; some will go through the back door, others through windows and if the driver does not lock his door, he will be knocked over. There is this particular Friday when we had to fight for transport as usual; a lady whose dress code by all means described her as a respectable Hajati did the unthinkable. Now, you will agree with me that there are some things the world does not expect of a Hajati, like going through a window, but this is what our lady did. To her disappointment or rather disgrace, the car was heading to Jinja and not Mukono. You can imagine the embarrassment that desended upon her when she had to get off the car and re-join us.
Incidentally, getting a car to carry you home is not the end of your trouble, you have the fare to deal with and sometimes we are over loaded; any protest from a passenger will attract the rudeness of the taxi driver, “oba toyagala kusembelayo omulala atule fuluma” loosely meaning if you don’t want to push up for another passenger, get out.”
I take the seat without complaint knowing well the traffic jam ahead of me on Entebbe road, Spear house, Nakawa, Banda, Kireka, Bweyogerere, the mother of all jam being around Namanve, won’t be over very soon. So when I have hidden my phone and money from my Neighbours’ reach, I give way to fatigue and head off to slumber land I go. I know it will be another 4 hours before I get home.
Written by Victoria Nannozi.