Wherever you live, getting to and from work can sometimes be more exhausting than work itself. Here in Ghana, taking the tro-tro, the main source of public transportation, IS work.
If you are not already aware of what a tro tro is, I’ll give you a brief overview. Tro-tros are large rickety vans that can carry 10-20 people, as well as a driver and a mate, the person who calls out the stops and collects the fee. Each tro has its own route and stops along the way. I like to think of it as a cross between a shuttle and a public bus, except a lot more crowded, hot, and unreliable. There are no signs, no lines, and no schedule, so as a rider, you have to be aggressive and proactive if you want to get to work on time! Despite the chaos and unpredictability of the tro-tro system, once you master your commute, the ride can often be enjoyable.
I’ve found that listening to music makes every tro-tro ride much better and more relaxing, so I’ve come up with the ultimate tro-tro playlist. Day or night, work or leisure, these songs are sure to make any trip you make more enjoyable. Wherever you are in the world, whether you commute with a car, train, bike, or your own two legs, if you dread the commute and need something to for your sleep-soaked eyes, case of the Mondays or rush hour traffic, this is a tro-riffic playlist for you.
My perfect wake up song.
1. Surprise Hotel – Fool’s Gold
When a tro hasn’t come to my stop in more than 30 minutes…
2. Worry – Little Comets
Finally hopped on a tro!
3. Riding Coach – 1, 2, 3
When I get a seat next to the open window (YES!)
4. The Breeze – Dr. Dog
When someone on the tro refers to me as “Obruni”
5. Calling Me Names – Good Old War
When a woman carries on a super cute sleeping baby.
6. Baby – Devendra Banhart
When I have a case of the Mondays.
7. It’s Time – Imagine Dragons
When we’re stuck in traffic and I’m not sure if I’ll ever get to work.
8. Someday – The Stokes
When I look out the window and don’t recognize where I am…
9. Middle of Nowhere – Hot Hot Heat
When I try to buy plantain chips outside the window and the tro starts moving and the plantain lady starts running after the tro…
10. There She Goes – The La’s
When I get homesick.
11. Arizona – Kings of Leon
When I’m walking to work and don’t want to be stopped by people on the street…
12. Break My Stride – Matthew Wilder
When I get off the tro at the RIGHT stop ON TIME! “HERE I AM BABY!”
13. Signed, Sealed, Delivered – Stevie Wonder