SSSss…that stands for sweaty, sweet-tongued, stamina, and whatever other ssss you can come up with. This is just a feeble attempt at putting a stamp of description on the famous Lagos traffic traders, sorry …business men and women! I take real delight in watching the sheer genius of their sale pitches as they deftly meander through the clogged traffic terrains of Lagos, the third mainland bridge being my favourite. Morning, noon, dusk, night, they are there, in my opinion, putting the graduates of the Lagos and other business schools to shame. You want real practical, hands-on, hard-nosed effective business training, then my humble advice is, take the time to study and learn from the traffic business gurus of Lagos.
A lot can be said about the negative sides of this type of business practice, I do concede. Many people see them as downright nuisances in an already annoying traffic experience, not to talk of the dangers they pose to themselves and other traffic users. There is also the more immediate and terrifying truth of some robbers posing as these traders, only to whisk out guns on unsuspecting commuters. The truth however is, in a world gone mad, who really should ever let his guard down, be it in traffic or the comfort of one’s own home? We have to admit that we live in a world where every aspect of life has the up and the down side. While debating the positive or negative sides of this traffic trade business however, I insist on dwelling on the noble services they are rendering to me and others like me.
What first struck me about this business when I first got to Lagos was the vast range of goods sold by these traders….shoes, belts, bathroom scales, bags, clothes and kitchen to household wares, fruits, vegetables and packaged foodstuffs! Imagine doing such comprehensive shopping from the comfort of your ride! I have lost count of the number of times I was saved the rigours of going out to shop, when my husband calls on his way back from work ” sweetheart, don’t bother, I was able to get some fruits…” or whatever else he had wanted me to get earlier, just because these traders were there at the right time, with the right stuff! All hail the trffic business gurus of Lagos!
Tomorrow the powers that be may decide that it would be better for all concerned to rid the highways of these ”STARS OF THE LAGOS BUSINESS SCENE” and no doubt such actions would be welcome, but before that happens, Iam determined to recognise and commend the determination, zeal, endurance, good salesmanship, and above all, the timely and crucial services they are rendering in the very challenging (especially to housewives) and hectic life known as LAGOS LIFE.
Eko oni baje o!!