Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Crazy muzungus on wheels

Last night I was driving 20km/hr (12mph) on the main road. While those jeep commercials make four-wheel-driving look like soooooo much fun, when you have to bump and jump every hole and ravine, you pray for pavement after day 1. The context of this story - It was night and the road was quite slippery from the downpour that had happened that afternoon. I was scanning for the turnoff where a friend lives. A motorcycle was a behind me a bit.

I noticed a baby goat in the road and slammed on the brakes. I looked in my rearview mirror and the motorcyclist pulled up unsteadily next to me. He threw down his bike and was not very happy. In a similar situation in the U.S. I would have had three thoughts: "did I cause an accident/was it my fault/is the other person okay?" Here I thought "no/no/yes" mouthed that there was a goat in the road and gave him a "give me a break" look. Seriously, if this guy fell because of me he's not a very good driver. Plus, he didn't fall, because he pulled up next to me to express his discontentment. I'm a bit tired of having absolutely no room for error because I'm a muzungu (white person). My once friend splashed mud on a guy on a motorcycle with her truck as they were passing in the street and he demanded she buy him new clothes!

I turned onto the dirt road where my friend lived. The motorcycle followed me, not that I was too worried about this guy, as the car was locked and I had my cellphone to call in troops in the unlikely event I needed help. The road has a bit of a tricky uphill, and a young man and woman moved to the side as my truck struggled to go up. Unsuccessfully, as it turned out, since I kept sliding back. I tried a few times. I think the motorcycle tried to follow up once and then got the heck out of my why as I slid back towards it. This guy probably became convinced that I was actually trying to kill him, because he left. I popped out of the truck, smiled at the couple, asked if there was crazy guy on a bike around (I think the look they gave me was "nope, but there's a crazy white girl in a truck!"), and locked the wheels so I could engage the four-wheel drive. Two attempts later I made it up the hill to my friends house.

I know what you're thinking: "was the baby goat okay? Did the little guy make it?"

Indeed he did.

4 Comments:

Blogger Mom said...

Gosh, who'd of thought just driving to a friend's house could be such an adventure it'd make a blog entry...only in Kindu!

5:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sarah,

Being a motorcycle nut myself (kamikaze style in Athens) I share the thoughts of the unhappy cyclist who had the bad fortune to be behind you.

Down with the car drivers!!!

Tasos

7:51 PM  
Blogger TheMalau said...

That is what happens when you have big cars in lil' ol' Port-Empain! Watch it though. Don't want you under some nganga's spell... ;)

12:54 AM  
Blogger Sahara Sarah said...

Cyclist - 2, Goat - 0

9:45 AM  

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