I started driving school today, actually sat down and did the moving of the car bit. I’d always been afraid of the road, of the other drivers and of operating a machine that can kill people. I decided that I was going to learn to drive this year- in January actually but a few things came up and I shelved that resolution.
While I was waiting for a keke to take me to Masha bus stop where the school is located, I saw something that laid the foundation for this post.
It was a very hot afternoon and the buses and kekes were nowhere in sight, it was the time for okada (bike) men to shine. There was a slim and dark lady who was probably in her early thirties, she seemed like a northerner by the mode of her dressing and her very slim figure. We smiled at each other when I arrived but no words were exchanged. The okada riders kept pausing a little in front of us but I wasn’t interested because the bike fare is three times the bus and keke fare and I’m on a strict budget *broke*. She suddenly stopped one and told him she was going to Kilo.
“100 naira” he replied.
The normal fare is a hundred naira by bike and fifty naira by bus and rarely keke, so you could imagine my shock when she said fifty naira.
“70 naira” was his new price and my mouth fell open.
She insisted on fifty naira and he moved a little and then stopped.
“You get change?” he called to her.
She said yes and they continued on their happily ever after journey. I stood there with my lips slightly parted until a keke came calling for Masha and I jumped in. On my way home from driving school, I couldn’t help thinking about the whole thing.
If she’d asked me if a bike could take her to kilo bus stop for fifty naira, I’d have laughed and told her to forget it because there’s no way a bike would take the same fare that a bus with other passengers would take. I’d have so thoroughly discouraged her and she wouldn’t have pushed for fifty naira, maybe she’d have settled at seventy naira.
I have lived in this area for three years and I know enough about public transport in this place to be considered something of an expert yet I didn’t know everything and I definitely have been limited in my thinking. I’m sure that I do not need to tell you that a paradigm shift has occurred in my life this evening, while I’m not saying that I’m going to all out and implement every crazy idea that comes into my head- trust me, they’re so many, but I’m definitely going to pursue my dreams even when people say it can’t be done. Especially when they say it can’t be done.
I read a post on Bellanaija today that also made me think and smile, unfortunately I didn’t save the link because of a crazy issue with my google chrome and the post isn’t a current post. The writer talks about how it is usually opportunity that is the x factor behind most successful people. By opportunities, we’re not just talking about the things that money can buy but the people we meet and simply being in the right place at the right time. But the main problem is recognising an opportunity for what it is, usually because it is shrouded in terrible wrappings and veils and we can’t see through.
What to do? Be diligent in everything you do and put in a little extra if you can. You might be surprised to discover that your “breakthrough” (Nigerian Christians have bastardised that word) came from your days of small beginnings and that it might be those your days of drudgery that gave you the skills you need to get to the land of your dreams.
Don’t forget to ignore those who say it can’t be done, they might not know any better. Try anyway
So Duru did not invite us for party? Even Obianuju too… I’m watching both of them in 3D.
Are you a single female and based in Lagos? Then head over to Frances Okoro’s blog for her beautiful get together plans.
How do I end this post? I’m outta ideas.
Have a fabulous weekend everyone and if you can then please check out the Lagos book and art festival holding at Freedom Park Lagos. It should be great fun.