stripes.

I could tell you stories of where I have been, stories of how I have had to get there. Some of them, trust me, you will not believe. Some of the ish that I have had to go through, would have you shaking your head.

I have taken this particular route for as long as I can remember. In fact, I remember the first time I had someone sniff in disdain at the state of my condition. Truth be told, I had no idea there was anything wrong with me until that moment.

I could tell you stories about the people that I have met. They range from fiercely contested presidents to the litter nationals.

Uh! Do not get me started on the litter nationals. Seriously though – who grew these people. The other day, I swear, it was two of the most unsuspecting individuals in the nation. This couple could have been on the cover of GQ (how would I know about GQ, you wonder? Well that is a story of another week). Yes, back to team GQ, there I was happy to have what I could term as an eloquent scent wafting through me – then she went and pulled a kavera out of her bag, and he pulled out one with white crystals from his pocket.

Eggs – Of all the snacks on the entire scale of the snack kingdom, they had to choose – eggs!

Sadly, I never get to choose who I hang out with. Reminds me of some of the vile things that I have had to witness. Grown ass men leering at girls fit to be their children – grabbing at them, whistling, catcalling. What was this nation coming to anyway?

As we turn back into the area designated for us, I see throngs of them. Some of them dejected, some of them lost in thought, some of them as young as ten. Apparently, I am not supposed to judge a mother who lets her young child out on their own. tsk tsk. I watch them wearily, they look docile right now, but at the sound of one word, it’s like a ferocious beast is awaked in them. They get very lethal and if that ten year old does not have gumption, he will go down.

Jimmy hops out and then stares at the crowd that is visibly leaning forward. It’s almost like he saviours the moment. Jimmy walks to the front window and engages the driver in a brief discussion.

He then turns his attention back to the slowly growing irate crowd and says his version of Abracadabra.

Enkadde.

Just like I had predicated, the beasts lunged at me. That ten year old didn’t make it, he was pushed to the back as his elders elbowed and shoved each other out of the way. So funny, for the first twenty seconds, no one climbed in. Everyone pushing each other out of way. Wait, what? Is someone trying to use the rear door? Msschhwwww! Seriously, who grew these people?? Last week, word around was the Kololo route never got such hooligans.

Dang! Where are my manners? I forgot to introduce myself…

I am the blue stripped zebra.

My jungle? Parka Enkadde.

***

Parka Enkadde is the Luganda for Old Taxi Park.

You can find transportation to majority of the places in and around the city as well as to some destination out of the capital city. 

This is also a place where you have to learn to walk while alert and swift. There are pick pockets waiting for you to be lax so they can lift something from you; there are the leer-ists, who just want ‘some’ – they will grab at your arm, ass, shoulder anything they get their hands on; then there are the angry manual labourers, carrying heavy loads for people, shouting ‘fuss fuss’ at people strolling like they are in their grandfather’s backyard; then we have the conductors & drivers & the ones who collect money from them, these guys are famous for reserving the right to name – from ‘Sister, jangu tugende.’ – to – ‘Mumbejja olaga wa?’ – to – ‘Hajjati, gyo lagga?’.

I swear… I mean Hajjat? Reyale?

Anyway, the next time you are in the jungle, take a little care for the ten year old and the blue striped zebra that you ride.

 

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