Part of the itinerary for my last trip was Enugu to Cross River State where we will get to Agbokim waterfall and Obudu Mountain Ranch.
We had left Enugu in the morning and arrived Ikom around 1pm. We got two bikes and head out to Agbokim waterfall, we were done around 4pm and head out to the garage. If you are taking a public transport, brace yourself up for the number of passengers that fills a vehicle up. They have three in the back seat, four in the middle seats, two in the passenger seat near the driver while another one might practically be sitting on the driver's lap like our own driver did.
We arrived Obudu around 7:30pm due to very bad road. We got two bikes after telling them our destination, a hotel that a friend had stayed in. On getting there, we were told by the gate man that the place is fully booked and our bike guys should take us to the other hotel few metres from them. We plead with our bike guys to wait for us to check if the place is good, after checking we decided not to stay for a couple of reasons. Our drivers were now asked for a good hotel that we might likely get a room and one of them suggest a hotel that is owned by the State Governor.
All these while i was trying to reach the referred driver to Obudu. I had called earlier on and had to drop a message for him. He was able to get across on our way to Obudu and it became quite a challenge when I tried calling him when we got to Obudu.
Finally we arrived at this hotel. On our way coming, I had seen a coastal bus filled with people and I said to myself 'they must be going to a good hotel and I wished we got the hotel', which we did.
The saying 'Be careful what you wish for 'is a true saying. On entering the compound, that same bus was in there. I was excited and could not wait to see the rooms. I started feeling uneasy and skeptical when we were shown the reception. It was a table with some chairs and an inner room with loud music playing like a disco hall. While all these was ongoing, we had told the bikes to wait for us. We were shown to a room which looked like it was part of a three bedroom flat or a suite with three bedrooms. My alert mode was on high when the room was opened, it was the size of a small football field with a huge family bed in the centre. Something is not right I said to myself, this huge room cannot be going for five thousand naira, hell nooo.
On checking the bathroom we discovered there was no bulb and we need them to spray insecticide in the room, which they agree to do. Then I was shown to my own room for my travel buddy took the other one. It was room like the small motels you see in American movies. My next door neighbour was outside, the bathroom also do not have a bulb and the have to spray the room.
We agreed to stay, paid the bike men but i was not comfortable. While they went to get the bulbs I was able to get across to the driver who said his friend who will drive us to the ranch will meet us there.
The light went off and they went to put on a small generator that is like a 2KVA, then I lost my patience. I stood up and went to look for a bike, determined to get another hotel no matter the time. This was already around 9pm. My friend and I had a little quarrel over this but I left. I got a bike outside the gate, a few metres away from the hotel our referred driver call to say his friend is waiting for us in the hotel compound. I went back and the guy expressed his fear on why we were staying there. He later confirmed my fear. The place used to be a hotel till it was ran down and is been used as staff quarters for the workers that are working on a government project in Obudu. This confirmed the bus I saw, it was a staff bus filled with staff members and the guys try to make fast buck off strangers who knew nothing of the place.
We packed our bags and he took us to a better hotel that was on the way to the ranch. This was a much better option.
I learn the lesson to always trust my instinct and watch out for different signs in issues. This is the main reason why I always prefer to use a referred hotel that someone I know has used before or the one where someone I know was able to check it out for me.
Obudu Mountain story coming up next.