It Chop my money…..

What the deal what the deal ya’all. It’s your boy KKB writing from Muritala Mohammed Airport, Lagos Nigeria. The flight was uneventful apart from a crying baby and people talking across aisles while I am trying to get some sleep. The plane took off on time and landed half an hour early.  Usually I would be happy about this but it is still dark outside and because there are no chairs available, I am currently writing this while sitting on a steel pole, which offers zero comfort.

The day of my departure started off badly, I woke with the flue which I had been trying to avoid all week. My head was hurting and my whole body was aching.  There was so many things I needed to do before my flight, buy a watch, change my fantasy football team, ……. Etc. I nearly got knocked over by a car on Camden High Street as I crossed the road to buy night nurse from the chemist because I was not my usual agile self. I did what I could but I slept most of the day until my sister and mum came to pick me up to drop me at the airport.

The flight was uneventful apart from some children crying and people having multiple conversations across the aisles like they were in their living. Despite this, the night nurse I took before take-off enabled me to get a few hours’ sleep.  Going through passport control at Muritala Mohammed Airport went smoother than I had expected, I paid N150 for a trolley and waited for my luggage. The conveyor belt was extremely slow and I was still feeling the effects of the flu.  While waiting for my luggage, I listened irritability as a passenger berated a porter for having to pay for the use of a trolley and the porter’s assistance. “In London, all this is free, she exclaimed arrogantly”. I thought to myself, “well in New York its $2 for a trolley”. I doubt she would have made the same complaint if she was in New York. She then made a statement which really infuriated me “you people in Nigeria gan sef, you are so backward”.  I could tell by her accent that she could have been in the UK for more than 5 years, yet Nigerians were already not in her class.

I collected my luggage and went through to customers, I attempted to walked towards the exit when I heard “oga, this way please”.   A woman customs officer beckoned me over to her desk; she rifled through one of my bags briefly and allowed me to go on my way.

Upon entering the arrivals foyer, I saw approximately ten men lined up against a wall. As I walked past them, I realised that they were touts. As I walked past each one, they offered to change my money or to get me a taxi. I kindly declined their offers, what amused me about the situation was that each one could see that I had declined the offer of the one in front of them yet they still tried their luck as I walked down the line. Did they I would go for their service over their colleagues because of their winning smile?

It is 5am and still pretty dark outside, my uncle had not arrived to pick me up so I decided to sit on the steel pole like my fellow passengers. The lack of seats is very disappointing. It is 5:30am and I was extremely thirsty, I asked a security officer where I could buy a drink and he pointed me towards a vending machine. I got the vending machine, a can of sprite was N300, as put a N500 note in the slot, I heard “it no give change o”. I looked to my left and short me man was standing right next to, I don’t know how he got so close without me noticing. “You have change”? I asked.   “Give me the money, I will get change for you”, he responded. I was about to give him the money when  I came to my senses, I don’t know this person, there was nothing to stop him taking my money and disappearing, this was his territory.  “Don’t worry, I will buy chin and drink, I don’t need change”. He gave a look of disappointment and slinked away. The machine rejected my note on 9 different occasions; I was getting thirstier and more irritable after each attempt. I elated when it accepted my money on the tenth try. I pressed number for my chosen product when I heard someone from behind shout “the machine is broken o, do not put money it”. I instantly became deflated and my mouth which had been moist at the prospect of drinking a cold can of sprite when the machine accepted the money a few seconds previously suddenly felt like it had been filled with sand. I pressed the buttons a few time to confirm and was sorely disappointed that the man had been correct. To make matters worse, someone had taken my space on the steel pole.

My entourage arrived to pick me up around 5:45am. It has been an interesting start to my journey and I am sure there will be more things to write about along the way.

Till next time-KKB out.

2 thoughts on “It Chop my money…..

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