Lagos life is challenging. But only those who are street smart can work through its intricacies. Unlike many other states, real Lagosians are famous for being smart. Perhaps this is due to having lived in Lagos where one has to understand the workings of living in the city. Ajoke Rukayat Naij.com Lagos contributor writes about the rules of living in Lagos.
Lagos is a mega city with numerous elements constituting to its everyday activities. It also has some silent rules that govern it… No one will tell you some of these rules but let’s quickly take you through some of the rules.
1. Don’t expect too much from strangers; Expecting too much from them might get you forever disappointed.
2. When trying to meet up with an important appointment, leave your house as early as possible. The Lagos traffic can turn one into something else, hence, the need to combat it by setting out very early.
3. Do not be gullible. Be satisfied with what you have and never ever think there is another way to ‘double your money’ aside from working hard.
4. Don’t be a lookulooku! or better still don’t be a Lagos looker. Quite a lot of people have met themselves in what they never bargained for, after waiting by the roadside to join a crowd of people who were watching some sort of scene.
5. Be smart. The city of Lagos is for those who can make sound decisions without being unwavering about it. Never allow any bus conductor shout at you, never be distracted by some strange fellow while waiting for a bus at the park…Be smart in everything!
6. As a newcomer to the city, keep in mind that that rents, housing and lands are valuables in Lagos, hence their costly nature.
7. Avoid walking at night. Do everything that you need to do to avoid night crawling. Although it is allowed to participate in the night life of the Lagos city, you must have been used to the terrain, have a valid identity card and avoid places you know are unsafe for you.
8. Be courteous always. Even if you think the people are too busy minding their businesses, there needs to be someone (like you) to put a little sunshine in their busy day. Help a stranger but don’t ever get attached.
9. Don’t ever believe everything you hear. Quite a lot bad elements make up stories just to champion their cause or even swindle you. If your head keeps asking how true a particular tale by your mechanic is, then, you need not give credence to the said tale.
10. Showing off in Lagos has its bad and good sides. However, everything needs to be done in moderacy. If you don’t want to be a target for unscrupulous elements, know what to say in public places, especially in danfo buses.
11. Lagos is a city that has all the good reasons in the world for you not to save. Yes, enjoy life, but do not forget your savings.
12. When walking, be extra careful not to allow anyone come too close to you or hit you. It might be a way of picking your pocket.
13. Be careful how you address people in public. You don’t know who is who!
14. Don’t drop sweet and snacks wrappers from your bus. You wouldn’t want the road officials to penalize your driver because of you. Remember, cleanliness is next to godliness.
15. Dress moderately. Don’t put on attires that will call unnecessary attention to you.
16. Don’t eat outside. If you must, eat at a place where it is glaring they take hygiene serious. Most of the food vendors only care about their money.
17. There are times you might need to act as if you are from a part of Lagos city. Sometimes, you might need to form like you are from one the sophisticated areas of the city while at other times; all you need do is to show them you are a ‘street’ person. These acts depend on what the situation demands.
18. There are quite a lot of churches in the city of Lagos, and they all have their dynamic (some, controversial) beliefs and mode of worship. Make sure you settle down for the one you are familiar with the doctrines.
19. In Lagos, it is a sin to trust too quickly. It might be a set-up!
20. While in a bus, if you are not comfortable with the atmosphere in the bus, please ask to alight. And while at it, be bold!