Usually once in a week, I would visit Mushin market (one of the municipal markets in Lagos, South-West of Nigeria). It is a great place to buy all kinds of food items, prescription drugs, raw materials for chairs, pillows, curtains, bags, shoes and several other things, though I only went there to purchase leather and some other raw materials for my footwear business. This time around, I had to visit the market twice within the last one week. It was a very busy week indeed; If only that translated to tangible profit. Sigh! Anyways, I had to deliver on some orders within a tight time frame so it was necessary for me to go get a few items.
Part of the strategy to expand my business and improve upon existing processes required that I took on the services of a young man, Ola, who would handle some key aspects of my productions. Going to the market with him was expedient to ensure that he knew the kind of items to buy. Anyways, we planned to spend no more than two hours for our shopping. The hours flew by pretty fast as we were still not done with purchasing items on our shopping list more than three hours on.
As we wound down, it was obvious that we both were fagged out. On a few occasions, I would buy him a drink and some snacks pending when we both got back home for a proper meal. This day was different. Ola excused himself for a few minutes and returned with a soft drink and gala (a well-known brand of beef roll). For the records, I don’t really like gala; at least not anymore. Let’s just say that I have had enough gala in the past to last a lifetime, especially in those times I was roaming the streets of Lagos in search of corporate employment more than a decade and a half ago. Back to my gala story; you must be wondering what the big deal is. Well, prior to that day, I was the only one that ever bought us anything to eat or drink whenever we were out on business. I observed that Ola was all smiles after I ate the gala and had the drink so I couldn’t help asking him why. His answer birthed this post. He responded saying that he was nervous when he wanted to offer me the gala and drink. It meant a lot to him that I accepted his token.