At this moment, I can only imagine many of us unconsciously remembering on or more of those stories we were told in the past about someone who got initiated into a cult and/or one of those Nollywood films we had watched in the past that had done quite a lot of damage to our mind-sets over a lot of things.
On a more serious note now, it’s the initiation story or rather, my initiation story! Wanna know how it happened? Let’s go….. I know you’d enjoy this!
FRIDAY, 10TH JULY 1:40 PM
“Ko si isu o. isu ti won” (Meaning – there’s no yam; yam is now expensive)!
That statement broke my heart for a few seconds or more. I had never expected this at all. At that moment, I was at crossroads and needed to make an important decision.
Some minutes earlier, I was at our editing room at eloPhotos; confused, tired, weak and hungry. The weather had not helped matters at all as the rain made me “hungrier” or so I thought! I needed to get something to eat but had little or no amount of money to spend on that. It’s quite funny how fast I have turned into one who is very conscious about how he spends money even though I never studied economics throughout secondary school. Well, when the realization of somethings dawn on you, responsibility shows face. So I concluded then that I was going to get fifty naira yam which of course I had concluded would cater for my hunger needs till I left the office that evening. Another intern had shared my views and had agreed to do same!
Obviously, I was stuck with this food seller who said she didn’t have yam because yam was expensive in the market and for me, beans wasn’t an option. I was almost thinking I was going to remain hungry throughout the day until…
“Would you rather eat wanke?” Yewande asked.
Yewande is a colleague at eloPhotos; another intern and wanke was one term my ears had grown accustomed to hearing ever since I started the internship programme. What “wanke” meant in English I didn’t know and what it was composed of, I didn’t know likewise! Sluggishly, I answered in the positive. I really didn’t know what I was in for but I felt it would be nice. To confirm my heart rumbles, I asked Yewande again if the meal was sweet. She answered me in the positive and it just did it for me!
If it was sweet and had been eaten every intern at eloPhotos and they were still in love with it, then it’s a go. I added that she should just serve me “wanke” fifty naira. I was a bit shy having to say that but then, it was my money and she wasn’t giving me any extra o! In no time, she was done serving the food and we were fast on our way back to the studio to have a delicious wanke meal! In a few minutes, I was initiated; not to any cult but to the wanke club. All I knew about the wanke meal was that it was made majorly from rice. It was later I got to discover that many of the interns got initiated too after they began the internship at eloPhotos. So, my case wasnt any different. It was quite shocking for some to see that I was eating this generational meal but then I had no option.
Come to think of it, I just remembered I had a balance of fifty naira to collect from this “wanke” woman. Forgoing it wasn’t an option at all. I know I would remember to collect it or maybe use it to buy another plate of wanke. Anyways, that’s my decision to make not yours!
Are you planning to come to eloPhotos, please do not forget to ask where wanke is sold and have your initiation soon!
My name is Boluwatife Akindele, recent initiate into the wanke club and proud Photographer!