Public Transport Memoirs (Emtshoveni)

It’s a fun and yet not so fun life-depending.

So you get inside the kombi and because the driver wants to ‘close the gap’ and get to the customers at the next stop before his competition, he will take off before you sit down. And if you have to sit in the back seat, sorry, you will swerve and sit with a thud, worse if you are not fleshy like myself you know how painful that can be.

It may happen that you get ample time to claim a sit, and then you happen to sit next to three other people who might be heavier than you are. Hehehehe, the pain, cramp, the pain on your hip bone. You will fold yourself so you can get to the CBD in one piece.

Women out there possibly know the nightmare of sitting next to a guy who keeps his fare in the back pocket of his jeans/ trousers. He will elbow your breast and take several minutes to fish out his wallet. He will go through the same process when he returns it. Giving him a stern look, irritated look or trying to shift slightly to give him space may go unnoticed.

You may sit next to a passenger who wants to talk. Talk to you. Conversation that you are likely not to be interested in. It’s often a he-and he is often loud. Loud enough to attract stares. Loud enough to make you wish the driver would increase his speed. Loud enough you just want to slap his mouth shut.

You may sit next to a woman with a young child on her lap. She will make the angel’s feet dangle next to your legs while you are wearing white jeans or slacks. The child will smudge the whiteness out of your clothes, you will cough and gently try to move its legs while you smother the anger inside. She will string out apologies, while you smile and lie that it’s ok, it’s just a child.

You may find yourself sitting under the loud speakers in a kombi that plays loud music which makes the whole kombi reverberate. You will plead with the conductor and shout that may the driver reduce the volume. He will ignore you and may not even hear you when you call out that you want to drop off. You will scream when you drop off and promise never to board their kombi again.

If you are a good Samaritan like myself (in stitches), you will board with a woman with two children and bags and wants to place all of them on her laps. You will offer to carry one child on yours, they often sleep. While they sleep you will panic and wonder if the child pees in their sleep. You begin to imagine the nightmare of getting into town pee dripping.

When you get by Hyper and want to drop off, one foot out, the conductor may scream ‘police’ and attempt to shove you back in the kombi. The driver may take off while you remain standing like you are the conductor’s assistant.

Tshova Mubaiwa Picture taken from The eye.
Tshova Mubaiwa Picture taken from The eye.

You go through these, and sometimes crazier and happier times in ET’s.

Just in a few words


  1. kkkkkkkk.i think i have expirenced all u have mentioned.not forgeting sitting next to a guy who hasnt taken a shower for God knows how long achinhuwa hapwaaaaaa nemuromo………..

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Hahahahaha and sometimes you struggle to hear the person on the other end of the line,,, n by the time the driver seez your signal n reduces the volume, airtime inenge yatopera!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. And then there’s that guy who sits akaistretcher his hand behind your head as if he’s your dude or something (vanowanzofarira back seat type iyoyo), and of course the pesky commuters who glare at your whatsapp messages and look aside when you flinch. I mean, do they seriously think you didn’t notice? Not forgetting the guy anenge akarembera achinyatsoona kuti kombi yakazara and his kneebones are poking into your hips… kwaaks! Thought I was the only one who faces kombi woes. Hilarious post, yet so very true. Absolutely loved it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • My friend, its worse if you sit besides those stinking UBAs who either bath once in a while or who smoke the funny stuff. I never liked to board mitshovha kikikkikk but i did it once in a while to get the feel of it with my friends kikiikkikk

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks for engaging, talk of funny smoked stuff. Chances of getting home without a flu or headache are slim. Having your own space is good (driving). Kombis can be great places to get stories……

        Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Zvishuwo for engaging. Hehehehehe i loathe that so much. Apa you end up moving kumberi so there is no close contact. One guy said to me ‘sorry I have a culture of reading’, when I gave him ‘the look’ because of literally staring at my phone. Kugara pafront seat is even worse if the seats are high up, you have to avoid the knee getting in contact with your crotch.

      Liked by 1 person

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