I have always had this principle of never getting to a point where I get stranded on the streets of Lagos. I resolved to this principle because of the embarrassment usually faced by the stranded(not me though). It can really get so messy at times, that those you didn’t even approach would turn your matter to topic of discussion.
Well, I won’t blame people anyway. Experiences and recent happenings in the country have made it hard for Lagosians to part with their hard earned/gotten money.
This particular evening, I already planned to meet up with a lady at the bus stop in Ogba in order for me to pick up what was sent to me through her. I got to the bus stop, finished my business and while I moved some distance from her, to get to where the tricycle I intended to board usually load, I felt someone followed closely beside. He began begging for a token. He said he was stranded!
At first, I didn’t bulge. All I could think of doing was size him up. I wanted to be sure I was not about to be robbed or ‘magalised’. You never know these days.
But when your beggar becomes a Mario, what are you going to do? He followed me until I entered the tricycle o. I only gave him a token when I assured myself he could truly be stranded (he had a smart phone and he sure looked like one who was really in need of the money).
But then, how does one even know who is saying the truth since everyone seems to be getting stranded these days? Well, I’d say let your instinct guide you. And if you are too emotional, then you can be sure you will always be their victim!
Was I a victim? I wouldn’t know except I get to see him again in that position of ‘stranded’