Day 55: Transport in Ghana

Africans don’t get enough credit for the ordinary things they do. When Blablacar.com  launched in the UK it gathered much acclaim, the whole car-share phenomenon (if I can call it that) was hailed by all the eco-warriors as an innovative method developed in the already commuter-friendly streets of Europe and North America. So imagine my surprise when I got in a taxi to travel a not-too-far distance and was joined half-way through my journey by a woman and her child. It wasn’t my choice, nobody had asked me if I was OK with that. In fact the most communication I got from the event was a “Good Afternoon” from the lady as she jumped in. (SIDE NOTE: It is not only courteous but basically compulsory to greet everyone at every opportunity and as accurately to the time of day as is possible. Do not even think about saying “Good Morning” at 12.01pm)

 

Either way car sharing (especially taxi sharing) is a norm here. They call it “dropping”, no one got an interview with CNN or GTV as Young Innovative Millennial of the Year for coming up with the idea. It’s just the Ghanaian (and maybe even African) way of doing things. Maybe I should say it exhibits Ubuntu because in order to explain any activity on the continent it’s best to find a Zulu word. Just expect that in Ghana you might hail a taxi and think it’s your personal ride, it’s not. Enjoy the excitement of not knowing who will join you in your next journey it’s quite an experience. And if you’re in a good mood, maybe spark conversation, Ghanaians like to talk.

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