|Akara and Fried Yam, Courtesty Pinterest (Nigerian Foodies)|
Some nights ago, I closed late and so I had to patronize an okada rider.
For those outside the shores of Nigeria, we have what we call okada riders in almost every city in our country. Imagine someone with a motorcycle, carrying passengers for a fee. That's an okada rider.
At first they were a new means of livelihood for many, then they became a nuisance, especially when they were being used for robberies and attacks. Various cities now have laws governing their working times and where they can operate, if at all.
Okada riders are allowed to patronize the areas where my office is, and where I live, so its quite easy for me to use them from one location to the other.
So, on that night, I hailed one of these 'transporters' to take me home. After negotiating the price, the man asked how much I was holding. It turns out he would need to break down the money he had to be able to give me change when we arrived my destination, so we agreed that he would stop along the way to buy bread.
He did stop some minutes later, but not for bread. He stopped at a street food location, where fried yam, fried bean cakes (akara) and fried plantain (dodo) was being sold. The smell arrested me immediately. I seem to love yam with a passion these days, and that day was no exception. It did not even matter that all I had eaten all day was roasted yam and pepper sauce. I ordered some, then paid for both my order and the okada man's order.
The man did not believe I was not going to collect the money back from him. I insisted, and when we arrived at my house, I proceeded to pay him the full charge agreed for the trip.
He prayed for me fervently and I thanked him and walked away.
I still do not understand why he did not believe me. I mean, I said I would pay and I did.
I enjoyed my order. You should try it one day - african white yam, deep fried in vegetable oil, served with pepper sauce and chilled water...hmmm....
I better stop here before hunger knocks fully on my door.