Friday, May 4, 2012

Pen-Pens: The New Way To Get Around

This Bike came from Ganta to Conference in Monrovia where we taught.

One thing that has definitely changed since I used to live here were the Pen-Pens (motorcycles) that now swarm the streets of Liberia.  There are still taxis and buses and bicycles but there are Pen-Pens everywhere swerving in and out of traffic making their namesake sound with their horn: "Peen Peen!".  

We mostly took automobile taxis as they seem to be more safe, but I took a moto-bike taxi several times and it was quite an adventure!  No one wears helmets.  No one obeys traffic laws.  No one stops for pedestrians.  In fact, some Pen-Pen drivers seemed to get a chuckle out of laying on their horn and startling the unsuspecting as they drive by.  There are some of those types in every society.

PROS:  You get there faster.  Can handle bad road conditions better than autos and buses.  Fresh air and "cycle therapy" with the wind in your hair and all that jazz.

CONS:  You may not get there!  Exposed to elements/opportune thieves.  Not always seen by larger vehicles.

My big Kpelle brother, Daniel K. Biah, who took me on several Pen-Pen rides through Buchanan

As with any taxi ride, you put your life in the hands of the driver.  Don't hesitate to say, "Slow down!"  Here is a brief part of one of my Pen-Pen trips through Buchanan in Grand Bassa County, Liberia.

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