Awkward Things In Danfo
Hate ‘em, love ‘em – boarding a danfo is akin to taking a ride on the wild side.
Boarding a danfo is always an opportunity to witness some bizarre stuff. It also gives you an opportunity to experience some unusual behaviours from the driver, conductor or co-passengers.
Anyway, here are some awkward things you are sure to notice while taking a danfo ride.
1.Wires serves as ignition keys
They rarely have ignition key. Instead, to start the danfo, the drivers would have to rub together a number of wires located around the ignition point.
2. The seat-belt is slack, doesn’t grip or has no place to plug it to
The seat-belt is there just to fulfill all righteousness. Most of the seat belts lack the ability to carry out the function that they were designed for. This is because a lot of them have lost their elasticity, they have nowhere to plug or buckle them to, etc. In order to evade arrest by traffic law enforcers, the driver and the front-seat passengers would simply have it hanging loosely over their shoulders.
3. An attached “Ijoko” (wooden stool) or plastic seat make up the front seats
Danfos typically have a space in-between the driver and the front seat passenger’s seat. In a bid to maximize every available space in the danfo, a kitchen stool or a white plastic chair is fitted into that space. This way, an extra passenger can be accommodated. And of course, the driver and his conductor make a little extra buck. It is the least comfortable seat in the bus; however, comfort is the least consideration for commuters in Lagos.
4. Someone always get to smell the conductor’s armpit
A passenger in the bus is always afforded the opportunity to sniff the conductor’s armpit. That happens if you are unfortunate to seat right where the conductor reserve for himself to stand – that is, by the door area. As the conductor bends over to collect fares from the passengers sitting behind you, he effectively puts you in a vantage position to catch a whiff of the smell emerging from his armpit.
5. No matter the threat by the conductor, someone always presents a large bill as fare
Before the trip starts, it is typical for the conductor to demand that only commuters with exact fares should board his danfo. Such demands are accompanied by all manner of threats. Still, this condition is hardly adhered to. There is always at least one passenger that will present a large bill (N500 or N1000) for payment for a fare of about N50 or N100.
6. There is always a whiff of alcohol originating from the driver’s breathe
While sitting on the front row next to the driver, you always get a whiff of alcohol being discharged from the driver’s breathe. You begin to wonder if alcohol consumption is prerequisite for driving a danfo in Lagos.
7. It is a taboo for the conductor to sit
For whatever reason, conductors appear to detest sitting down. Standing, or squatting, inside the bus, or simply hanging outside the bus is the preferred position for danfo conductors.
8. There is a physics lab at the back of the driver’s seat
That is where the vehicle battery, solvents and some electrical wirings are connected together in series or in parallel. The slightest contact by the passenger siting around that area can effectively bring a danfo in motion to a halt.
9. Rudeness is the default character of the conductors
Perhaps, the consistency of dealing with unruly passengers have configured them to be so. Conductors exhibit absolutely no sense of courtesy in them.
10. There is always instruction for passengers to shift
There is always a passenger that instructs other passengers in a row to shift when it is obvious that there is nowhere to shift to.
11. No item on the dashboard works
Not even the fuel gauge works on the dashboard. If at all anything on the dashboard works, it is the audio system which typically blast songs by popular fuji artistes.
12. Comfort is the least consideration in a danfo
The seats are made up of planks. Some seats do not have backrests. A row sits 5 instead of 4, all manner of body odour persist, etc. Yet, no one complains.
13. The window-side of the front seat is hot cake
Passengers are so eager to sit at the window side of the front seat. A passenger sitting there would typically come down from the danfo to allow another to embark so as for him or her to retain that position.