Bimbo ran as fast as his legs could carry. It looked more like he was jumping through distance, his feet moving swiftly as his body pushed speedily against the direction of the wind, his ‘ORIGINAL’ Snapback almost falling off.
“Your change! Your change!! Oga,” he shouted as he gently hit his fist again, the wound-up glass of the Acura SUV, waving two stretched out pieces of crumpled two hundred Naira notes.
“Ah! Thanks,” the old man said with a smile.
His face portrayed a contradiction of feelings; his lips were smiling, his eyes were surprised and his face, well sad. Bimbo wasn’t one to care about honesty, but this day was a special one. It marked the end of the only successful venture he had entered, he was about to take his biggest risk yet. It marked the end of Bimbo as a ‘Gala seller’ and the beginning of the ‘Gala Producer’. Gala was like a good luck charm, every other investment failed, every other idea had crumbled. Sausage rolls were the only things not to wrap up for him. Maybe there was a sign that read ‘’this guy sells good gala and if it isn’t gala, it’s probably not good’’ or his maybe his destiny had been rolled together with sausage.
He tried his hands at selling drinks, he sold eggs, electronics, recharge cards, and they never worked out as well as the gala. Bimbo had become so much of an expert in this rather integral part of the average Nigerian’s everyday life that he had decided to learn how to make it.
“How hard can it be? I already sell it, I could as well make it besides, if I can sell someone else gala this good, how well will I sell mine?” he had thought to himself.
The past few months had shown him a part of himself he had never seen, one he didn’t even know existed. These past months, he was genuinely happy; this was a new feeling for him. He had made more money than he did altogether in his initial three years of selling gala and every other venture he tried. More importantly, his Bim Rolls had rubbed shoulders with the A-List rolls. His product was rolling with the big boys; he carried her in the same box with other trademarked brands.
Although it started only in his carton, he felt this adrenaline rush anytime someone asked for his Bim rolls. Other street traders and hawkers along the Lagos-Abeokuta expressway had also asked him for him suppliers of this Bim rolls that people kept asking for. The production and distribution of this Bim rolls was going so well that was why he had to end his beloved trading. He needed to face production squarely.
Bimbo would have never expected anyone to indicate interest in his life, let alone see him as a source of inspiration. He was interviewed by a blogger who was profiling entrepreneurs in Lagos. The blogger wanted to know more about his business.
“My business?” This had a sweet taste on his tongue as he questioned his question. He could see respect in the eye of his interviewer. He’d never been this respected by someone, anyone, not even the people he could father.
He strove to articulate his words, struggling to pronounce them like an American. He put ‘R’s in words that didn’t have, all in a bid to be eloquent. He also felt the need to tell the readers that he’s lack of education wasn’t due to laziness or been just too stupid. His parent had died in a fire. The last word from the blogger during the interview was a question, one that struck ever bone in his body like the fingers plucking the strings of a guitar.
‘’So, what do you have to say to the young people that look up to you’’
‘’Look up to me, that is not possible. Who am I? Where am I that they would look up?’’ Bimbo held back this words, impulse had almost spit them out through his mouth. He now wish for this dream to end, he didn’t want to spend too much time in this and wake up to find out it wasn’t real.
He remembered words he heard in church, a few weeks ago. When those words were spoken, he would have never imagined that he would use it or that even if he did by any magic, anyone would be willing to listen to those words from his own lips. He swallowed spittle twice, cleared his throat and then began
“Well, they should look inside to find themselves and not rely on what other people on the outward see or think or even say. They should never give up because failure is just an ingredient in the grand dish of success’’
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