Xeni on the road in West Africa: Coffin Shaped Like Taxi, Presumably for Deceased Taxi Driver

Benin: Coffin for Deceased Taxi Driver

(In case you've missed previous posts and tweets, I've been traveling in West Africa for the past couple of weeks.) Driving in Benin this weekend on the long road from the Burkina Faso border down to the port capital of Cotonou, Benin, we spotted this: a car carrying a handmade coffin which was crafted to resemble a taxi cab. Presumably, this bespoke box was to be the final resting place for a taxi driver who perished. It is customary in some West African cultures to create coffins that call to mind some aspect of the deceased's life or work. Not everyone here gets buried in a customized coffin like this, but it is a sort of regionally specific popular art form. Perhaps someone more versed in West African culture than I can chime in, in the comments. I don't have Photoshop on this laptop, so I can't blur out the number, but please don't call it. The guy's not gonna answer, and it might ring one of his survivors, which would be mean and rude.