I left school for Oshodi once to get components for my mini project and I bought a lot of things; resistors, LEDs, jumper wires and all, it was time to go back to school and I realized I had so little left and also discovered that I brought only one of my ATM cards with me, which happens to be the one without cash. I decided to call someone I did a transaction with in Computer Village in Ikeja to transfer money to my account, it was not even up to 5 minutes when he called back to say the money has been sent. I felt like a boss and foolishly decided to spend all the money I had on me. I took a drink and gala as expected and decided it was time to go back to school. Putting in my card to the ATM, the account was still empty. I was immediately apprehensive and I called my guy to confirm the transaction, he swore he has sent it and I trust him.
Now Oshodi to Ikeja was just ₦50 away and I had ₦20. The pride in me could not beg and I was just staring at the bus as if a miracle would happen. It is getting late now and my pride is giving way to anxiety. I started begging for ₦30.
I thought it would be easy, I started from the bus conductor who abused the daylight out of me, then to the roadside sellers, I even begged to transfer airtime for ₦30 but nobody wants to even give me audience. From saying “please”, they will just say they don’t have money. “That is how they will be using office clothes to beg for money up and down instead of them to work” a woman said in Yoruba.
After tireless and desperate efforts, I just sat there, I could not believe ₦30 “dragged” me like this. I was just looking at the bus as I once was and started thinking of the possibility of walking from Oshodi to Ikeja (as if I am mad!).
Finally, one of the passengers that has seen my hustle pitied me and called me to enter the bus and he would pay. I told him I have ₦20 and would only need ₦30 and the conductor said “See proud begger o, you even still get mouth, enter jare!”. I met myself in Ikeja and went straight to the bank to collect my money with my guy, incidentally the server was down as usual. Not after thanking my saviour in a manner the could almost make God jealous.
I have learnt from my experience several things,
Be smart, think before you act; Spend more time planning than acting, an effective strategy always wins the battle. I should have given my begging a strategy.
- Never give full investment to what you are not certain about; I spent all my money without getting to ATM first, that was not smart. Always have a backup and mitigation plans that you are sure of before throwing everything you have in.
- Never ever waste your time on the wrong audience; We all have constructs, bias and opinions about things and it is expected, so you should not assume everyone shares your passion and sentiments. I would have just entered my bank and politely state my issue to the the customer service; maybe telling him/her to check my account and thereafter explaining my dilemma and ultimately asking for 50 Naira won’t be a bad idea and I am sure many of you can think of other simple ways. Make sure you are speaking to those that understand you enough to help, if not you might have to hustle very hard to make them look at your direction. Getting investors should not be left to pity, speak informed and liberal investors.
- Some things just happen; Ultimately, we cannot deduce every step of our journey, there are just things we cannot control. The conductor might have well told me to enter and not to worry, the ATM might have dispensed the cash; call this fate, life, chance , mood, favour or even luck. This is why I plan my journey with God.