The current crime and insecurity in the country reminded me of a time I made a not so wise choice that thankfully, did not have a bad end.
I had been out with some friends and when it came to time for me to leave, I did not want to bother anyone for a ride…I hadn’t gone with a car. This happened a few years ago before Uber came; so it was not on my list of options in case you were about to ask.
This was in Kololo, about 11pm. It’s a bit residential. There’s not so many people walking along the roads that late. I walked to the road, stopped a boda boda and asked him to take me to the taxi stage. A random boda guy. He was just riding by and I waved him down. 11pm. I requested him to take me to the stage.
Along the way, he asked me what taxis I wanted and I told him I was going home and needed to get a taxi to my home. I told him the town where my home is. The stage was a little over a kilometer and probably 5minutes. As we approached it, he told me he was actually on his way to the same direction I was. Same town where my home is. So he asked if I was willing to pay some more money so that instead of leaving me at the stage to wait for the taxi, he takes me all the way home.
Nooowwwww….this is after 11pm…and I’m having this conversation with a stranger. On the road somewhere. I thought about it. Weighed my options. If I’d taken a taxi at that time of the night…would I have felt safe? Definitely not. Also, it’s enclosed. More passengers. More strangers. More trouble. If I took the offer of the boda guy….was it wise? What if he rode off elsewhere? Or met up with his other friends and hijacked me? What if this what if that? Blue Pill Red Pill.
I realized I needed to make a choice…I asked him to tell me more about the town, our town. I have lived there all my life so I know it inside out. Anyone else who has been there for a long time would know some basics. He told me he also grew up there, lives there but comes to town to do his boda business. That was a plus because then I got to ask him about places and people of the area that ONLY someone who’s grown up in the area would know. He knew all of them. I even asked him about my home church! He knew it! I asked him his family name…the name was familiar.
At this point I figured, he’s definitely really from there ALTHOUGH that did not mean he was not potentially a threat. I agreed to the offer, silently said my prayers and off we went. It was a long ride. It must have taken us about 40minutes; about 13 kilometers….that’s the longest boda ride I have been on.
He got me home, safe. My home was a little beyond where his was; he showed me his when we passed it. I paid him when we reached and he rode back. I don’t know if he could tell I was scared…I don’t remember if I wore a scared face….I wonder what went through his mind that night. Did he think I was careless for accepting his offer…or simply daring? Did he have second thoughts before offering to take me all the way home? I mean I could have been a threat to him as well. Did he not consider that?
Years later, women in the country are being kidnapped, raped, murdered and basically targeted and the thoughts of that night have now come back to me. What if that night had ended differently? What if?
I thank God for his divine protection every single day. Talking about the recent events in the country with a friend the other day, she said, ‘we are literally living by God’s mercy’.
We really are. Pray for your own safety. Pray for your people’s safety. Pray for our country.
And be cautious. A little bit more cautious.