Let me tell you a story about a stranger I met 2015 in Warri. I was at chevron yard to get things for my mom, on my way back to Benin. I branched a restaurant to eat my favourite food. After greeting the food seller
Are you Urhobo? she asked.
“Yes madam, I am from Ughelli although I was born in Benin City; I understand Urhobo,” I replied her “I need Banga and starch,” making my order
She served me and I started eating; a friendly young man walked in. Then he ordered in a way that touched my heart… “Mama, please serve me Eba fifty Naira and soup without meat, man must WAK (eat) even if no meat or fish.” His words touched me. I said yes; you are right. Man must chop (eat) He smiled. I told the woman to serve him food with meat and I will pay the bill. They both thanked me and we became friends. After we finished eating, he thanked me again and also praised the food seller that she was a good woman, then he said “sometimes she gives me food when things are rough, I used to have a place I stay but the government closed the area and everyone left; I am homeless at the moment; I sleep wherever night finds me.” I almost cried hearing his story but held on to pride. He asked me if he could have my phone number but at that moment my phone was dead; I did not charge before leaving Benin, “give me yours when I get to Benin I will call you” I said.
He replied, “I have no phone, but I can call you with a payphone,”. I realized his problems were many. He helped me carry my bag to the bus station, treated me right, prayed for me and said I should remember him then we said our byes. I waited for his call but I never heard from him, “did I give him a wrong number or maybe he lost it or something else must have happened to him” I wondered.
I checked my phone for days hoping to hear from the stranger who I forgot to ask his name, I would have tried my best to assist him even if it’s little, he had only one brother who died in a car crash when you hear his story your passion for humanity will arise. Months later I went to Warri, visited the same restaurant to eat and asked about him, I saw the food seller, we exchanged pleasantries, then asked her “please madam how can I reach the stranger I met here months ago; he did not call me; Where can I find him, I believe he is close to you? I will drop my number with you please tell him to call. ” Love
My heart bled by her response, I will never give him the number if you drop it with me, why do you want to mingle with that tout, an Igbo (marijuana) smoker, you are a responsible young man;You need no business with that wayward man who has no future, let him suffer. It dumbfounded me, I could not believe the woman said those words, this was someone he praised and thanked for being good to him, she broke my heart by her words, she never loved him, I walked away without eating or saying a word, mans love is fickle. I am not different from the stranger; I used to smoke weed; I am only fortunate not to face hardship like him; we judge people by appearance and that’s one of the world’s problems; she thought I was a saint; she didn’t want me to mingle with his likes and even called him a low life; she forgot life is unpredictable. I realized we are in danger, people pretend to love and show it to your face but destroy you when you are not there; I wish the stranger could be more careful eating the woman’s food; she isn’t a sincere person, some people pretend to help you while they are poisoning your future, she’s pretending to care while she’s a serpent, (Psalm 28:3) Draw me not away with the wicked, and with the workers of iniquity, which speak peace to their neighbours, but mischief is in their hearts, we all should pray never to have pretenders in our lives. I never went to Warri again before travelling abroad, we should learn how to love people truly, no matter the class or appearance, Be careful, life is too deep. Thank you and God bless.