Amlame to Atakpame Togo by Moto Atakpame, Togo, West Africa Tuesday, April 24, 2007
Amlame to Atakpame is 28.1 Kilometers
I made it to Atakpame, Togo West Africa Auberge Coordinates - L’amities 3000 CFA Bath outside with Fan April 25, 2007 07 degrees 31.315 North 001 degrees 08.952 East 297 Meters of altitude above sea level
I am getting better at this Togo Travel thing, I asked the owner of the 3000 CFA Auberge in Amlame, called - The Meet - how much a Moto was from Amlame to Atakpame, they said, - 1000 CFA - I went to the road, I say to the Moto, - 1000 Atakpame - He says, - 1500 - I repeat 1000, frown, threaten to walk away, and he still says 1500, I finally say, checked he had mirrors, looked at his face, eyes, foot pads for me feet, they were slightly bent down, then said, - Ca Bon -
I give the boy my front bag, climbed, on with the back one still on my bag, and had a wonderful ride to Atakpame in the breeze, baby mountains on the left, larger than normal trees, and a quick run for the big city. He never one, grumped on the price, and no threatening bully ideas, to extort money.
I forgot to say, - Trop Cher -
Meaning in French, something like too much cost or too much expensive.
This was great, I am learning how to negotiate with the taxis with the least amount of arguments. I need to set the tone, I argue with them, then ague some more, say too expensive, then get on the taxi. The Togo brain believe all white men are rich, stupid and will pay money because it grows on trees for us, and someone is paying this stupid amount of money. They learned it somewhere.
My father would say, - You never learned the value of money and of hard work. -
Africa does not know the value of money and of hard work, there is an inclination to not work, and take the money. All the leader seem to prove that…
I really do not care about the 2 or 3 dollars here, it is the principle of not making beggars and corruption on the planet. I am not going to enable them to abuse me.
I must argue for everything in a way, or they think I am stupid, and will just give them money for nothing. The art here is a little different than other taxis, as they are bigger, and will really get aggressive. I think if there was two of us, me and another person then I would have maybe less problems. The biggest problem with motos is to have the correct change at the end, or they will again go into whine and baby mode, anger, child tantrum mode, demanding to keep the change.
I am in constant trying to break the 10,000 and 5,000 CFA notes the bank give me down to smaller one, then get the 1000 notes down to coins. In a perfect world, I would walk into a bank and collect the change, this is not that world, and it really just normal.
I am trying to make my life simple, this moto mode of travel is in a way perfect, until my French improves and I am able to negotiate the front seat of the Peugeot Cattle Wagons better, I am better with the Motos.
I think I prefer the cars, but they are too slow, stop too much, and in the end, they just do not leave until they are full, but better for long hauls, I am in Skip, maybe Hop mode, not Jumps mode of Travel.
Moto, Motorcycle Taxi, Taxi, Togo Transportation, West Africa Transportation,