Beneath the shining crescent moon, the driver, yelping like a poor puppy, was dragged down from the vehicle. He was helpless.
Decades of dents and rust stains held the mini-bus together. It was a typical jaggin’ ji. Simply white in color, but destined never to travel along the Rue de Corniche that was lined by palm trees, rocky cliffs, hidden beaches, and reserved for the Foreigners and African Bourgeois. Standing high off the ground, it rattled and fumed with every turn, move, and gear change. Mostly maids and cheap laborers embarked in the rear of the vehicle and rode for a measly 150 CFA. The bus attendant dangled from the swinging back door, like a spider on its web, lifting men, women, and children onto le transport des Africains en Afrique. Soft and tired voices echoed off the metallic walls of the inside that offered little cushion, leg, or breathing room. Exhaust, dirt, and grim clung to the passengers.
The driver was drunk. It was well past 4 a.m. and the jaggin’ ji was empty. Locals had long returned home to neighborhoods like Pikine, Guédiawaye and Parcel – distant Dakarois neighborhoods plagued by power outages and poverty. 4 a.m. was not for the jaggin’ ji traveler. It was for the night owls: the foreigners, the prostitutes, the musicians, the young and rich, those who controlled time. 4 a.m. was not for those controlled by time.
Barreling north up Oukkam road, the dazed and dozing driver struck a yellow taxicab parked at the hole-in-the-wall entrance of Just For You restaurant and nightclub. Upon the collision, the taxicab driver, unaware of the out of control jaggin’ ji, thrust forward. His head struck the steering wheel and then fell limp. The horn blew unremittingly.
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