Some 8 years ago, my 200 level in the university, just after completing my 100 level at Awka, and was supposed to relocate to okofia, Nnewi to complete the remaining 4 years of my studies. I want back to Jos for the Holidays, to prepare for the hectic life of Medical school.
Normally, from Jos to Anambra, give or take when the road is free, I should reach awka by 6 pm or at most 8 pm. But on this very day due to some unforeseen circumstances, I reached Awka at exactly 10.09 pm. I was kinda devasted because I had to get to okofia that night. On getting to Eastern mass Transit bus station which looked empty at this point, I saw a bus driver who was probably packing up to end his day, and I pleaded with him to drop to at Nnewi since I also had so much luggage. After pleading and convincing, pricing and pleading again, he agreed to take me to Nnewi for 3,500 (Note this was 8 years ago). Nostalgic but he was looking like my only option and technically, I had no choice.
On getting to Nnewi, he dropped me at Eastern mass park in Nnewi, and that was when the devil decided to remember me. I couldn't find my wallet. Like my wallet was in my pocket one minute and the next minute, it was gone, just like a movie. The elderly driver Just kept staring at me as I searched my whole damn self, my pockets, my bags I unpacked my bags and began searching, ransacking my brain and asking myself where I could have possibly left my wallet. I became so scared, tears have already filled my eyes, I couldn't even look at the man.
"Nna what is it," he said
"Daddy, I can't find my wallet, and my money and ATM are all in there".
And so we started a mental traceback of when last I saw my wallet and it was at marked where we stopped to eat. Gosh did I leave it there? I started to cry because all 16k cash was there plus my ATM and Id cards and other little information.
I just felt so weak, sat on the floor and stared at my phone for a moment, then made a call to my friend but his number wasn't reachable, that rubbish lodge that does not have network reception. I felt bad at this point and wondered what I'll do to pay off my debt to the driver, so I offered my phone to the driver, then requested I collect his number, the next day, I will call him and give him his money in exchange for my phone, and I also begged him if I could sleep in his car since literally there where no bikes and even if I saw any, I did not have money to pay.
"Nwokem, enter bus let me drop you at okofia." I looked at the driver, he just didn't seem upset. "Sir, I do not have any money".
"I know", he replied and helped me pack my stuff back inside the car. I still collected his number and flashed him so he will have mine. Throughout the journey, I kept saying "thank you, sir, God bless you, sir". That day I saw the good in men. He dropped me at my lodge, helped me carry my stuff to my room and he left. I didn't pay a dime and he didn't ask about the money.
"I didn't do this for you, but for me," he said before he left.
The next day I got a call from the man that he saw my wallet on his bus, I went to town, collected it and everything was complete, offered him his N3500 plus an extra N2k, he refused all of it, like he didn't collect a dime, he said at a point it wasn't about the money again but because he could help a kid who was stranded the same way he would want someone to help his kid if stranded. I couldn't help the tears, since he wouldn't collect the money, I bought a 20L gallon and filled it with fuel and gave it to him, and disappeared before he will reject it.
I remembered this story because just today in a Keke a guy dropped and spent about 2 minutes searching for his wallet or money, I don't know which of them. I stared at the guy, smiled, and told him to forget it, that I would pay for him. When the Keke left the two girls in the Keke with me were "like I be Mumu oh", that people like that are everywhere. They said that such People would enter a public transport without transport fare expecting others to pay for them. It could be true but at that point, I didn't care, what if it was genuine? I smiled and replied to them,
"I didn't do it for him, but for me. I could help, so I did."
And when I alighted, to be petty, I paid for both girls and left. I hope they learn THE lesson that helping people isn't because of the people you help, but because of You.