A life in the day: A Kigali ‘motor’ driver

I wake up every morning at 6.30 and I begin planning the day’s work. First, I take shower and since I don’t have a housemaid, I check in with the laundry people to pick up clean clothes. Then, I check my motorbike to see whether it is mechanically fit.

I wake up every morning at 6.30 and I begin planning the day’s work. First, I take shower and since I don’t have a housemaid, I check in with the laundry people to pick up clean clothes. Then, I check my motorbike to see whether it is mechanically fit.

I usually have warm milk and one or two doughnuts before heading out. The first thing you do as motorcyclist is to find a stand amongst the gaggle of drivers that inhabit designated areas throughout the city. I have to be alert and vigilant or else a colleague will steal a passenger or two from you.

In the early hours, I dash through all streets hunting passengers; to cash in on those hurrying to work. I try to outsmart other motorcyclists by lowering the charges when the going gets tough.  After two or three hours running through the streets, I park somewhere and catch my breath.

Generally, I spend most of my day chasing passengers and cracking jokes with my colleagues especially on issues touching our daily lives. Money is always on my mind. Being young (21) and not married, I spend also the day thinking about tomorrow and what kind of life I need to live in future.

I think a lot because I want to make quick money and buy my own motor cycle and all that. I have no time to loiter.
Around 1.30, I break off for lunch. My best dish is rice and chicken. I take a glass of cold milk to quench my thirst. I use my money sparingly. After lunch, I relax for about 45 to 55 minutes.

I joined this kind of work two years back. Sometimes I try and go that extra mile; other times I can’t and need rest. At around 8.30pm, I tend to call it quits for the day. I am not the type to work late into the night.

But before I retire, I need to take the day’s revenues accrued from my job to my boss. Sometimes, my boss is not happy especially if the day has not been lucrative. Around 6.15 p.m. I count what I have made. On average, it’s about Frw10,000.

At home, I’ll shower and have supper at a nearby restaurant. I don’t loiter out at night because I always need enough sleep before tomorrow knocks on my door again.

Contact: suuna2000@yahoo.uk

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