Today’s story was inspired by this tweet about the lack of cash and alternate modes of payment:

Mabel rushes out of the store, hauling grocery bags. She stops short in her tracks, staring at the ride she’d ordered earlier.

She takes a deep breath and walks into the car.

Driver: Sister, good afternoon.

Mabel: Afternoon.

She reaches into her bag and shoves a handful of chinchin into her mouth.

Driver: Can I start the trip?

Mabel nods, and he starts the trip. She wipes her mouth, pulls her phone out of her bag and sends a text.

Mabel takes a peek at the driver.

Mabel closes the chat and tries to open her bank app again, but it doesn’t work. 

She knew what this was. It wasn’t her bank trying to publicly disgrace and humiliate her. 

It was her aunt, her mother’s friend, who’d come to stay with them for a couple of days, but now fills their house address on all forms. 

She was the one to blame for all this. Mabel was on her own when the woman dragged her outside to run errands at the peak of a cash scarcity and general money issues in the country. The second she stepped outside, she knew she was in for it. 

Mabel paid for her ride to the store from the little money she had left in her wallet. She got to the store and proceeded to roam around aimlessly because Aunty Nkechi, who’d built her new home on top of Mummy Mabel’s, kept sending the things she wanted one by one.

Mabel finally got to the till and tried to use her bank card to pay, but it didn’t work. She tried again because what’s the ordinary plastic card in the face of her perseverance?

Her card:

After 30 minutes of standing at the till, looking like a child whose parents had abandoned them, Mabel’s card finally worked, and she made her way out of the store with her tail tucked between her legs.

Now, here she was, thinking of ways to pay for a service…. again.

Driver: Madam, you have cash, abi? I don’t want transfer o.

Mabel: Sir?

She looks in her shopping bag.

Mabel: Oga, I don’t have cash here oo.


Mabel pulls out a pack of biscuits and small chops from her bag. 

Mabel: Hold this one for now. When we reach, I’ll see what I can do for you.



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