Mobilista – Episode 1: The Drive

Bola snatched up the phone from the dining table as she bolted for the door. This was her routine. She was always running late. She almost never walked out the door of her apartment on her way out in the morning. It was always a dash.

In another life, she would be a sprinter. A runner. In this present reality, she was a tall, slender, pretty and intelligent executive in the employ of a media agency in Lagos.

Her trip to the office from her Maryland apartment was a one-hour drive to Ikoyi, where her office was located. It always began with that trademark dash for the door.

Every now and then, she would forget to pick up her phone on the way out. Today had not been one of those days. Her early morning drill had been executed to perfection this time – a dash to the bathroom, back to the room for a quick dress up, a couple of back and forths between the living room and the bed room, and then a bee line for the door.

In a few minutes, she had left her residence behind and was making a turn into Ikorodu road. The first streaks of daylight were just breaking out, but a quick scan of the highway told her that traffic was building up already and would likely get bad in another few minutes.

Driving in the bustling city of Lagos was all about timing and being smart. Bola floored the pedal like a Formula One race driver. Fortunately, the Corolla was no Ferrari and didn’t clock 100 kilometres in 6 seconds. But it was good enough for her purposes. She was no slouch at the wheels of a car. Or at anything that she did for that matter.

As she exited the side lane at Anthony Village, she heard her smartphone beep. The distinctive beep told her that she had new email on her office account.

“Don’t these clients have a life?” She muttered. “Mails at 6am!”

But she didn’t reach for the device. No matter how urgent the mail was, she knew better than to let herself get distracted while at the wheels. Email, SMS and voice calls were a no-no while driving. She was no slouch, but she was no daredevil either. She knew that breaking the concentration that the car and the road ahead required to attend to a phone call or message was courting trouble.

She scanned the road, saw a clear opening, and floored the pedal again. The Corolla purred nicely in the cool morning weather and responded to her demand. In moments, she was cruising and in step with the flow of traffic along the highway and humming one of her favourite tunes.

She was in high spirits this morning, and she knew from the intermittent beeps coming from her phone that this was going to be a hectic work day.

Mobilista is published on Saturdays and Sundays here on Mobility Blog. All rights reserved. Unauthorised reproduction prohibited.

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