My last One Cedi

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I am usually a very responsible person, I mean I think things through before I do them but something happened which has put my responsible nature in question.
It all started when my girlfriends and I decided to have a Pizza Night one Friday. We had a group of male friends who usually paid for the bills whenever we went out to get pizza on Fridays.

That day, we decided to have a complete girl’s night out without the rowdy boys and to also prove that we were capable of footing our bills.
So we chartered a taxi to the pizza joint, and Melanie, Bridget, and I paid our fare. When we got there, the attendant asked if we would like to order something to begin with because the pizza would delay.

After taking the drinks and talking for some time, the pizza came and we enjoyed every bit of it. Then we ordered some smoothies.
While we were taking the smoothies, I asked Bridget who was sitting close to me if she knew how much money the boys usually spent, because I was beginning to wonder how much we had spent, because Melanie had also asked for a big bottle of water.

I remembered that some time ago, a friend of mine warned me that things were more expensive at such places.

‘Oh, you worry too much. This will be chicken change.’ This assurance from Melanie put my mind at ease, I didn’t think about it again, till I realised Bridget had been sitting on the menu all along.
‘Bridget, pass me the menu’ when Bridget handed me the menu, and I saw the prices, I wondered if it was a prank, and I expected someone to jump out and shout April fool.

But it didn’t happen. I ransacked through my bag, if I paid my share, there was no way I was going to be able to go home.
Bridget, Melanie, check out the prices. I handed them the menu, and Bridget’s attitude made me feel like we were going to have to wash dishes to pay for the hearty meal we had just eaten.

‘Ei God, what is this, what at all did we buy, ei, this small bottle of water’
I was grateful there was just a handful of people who were sitting outside and couldn’t hear Bridget.
After her outburst, Bridget emptied her purse, Melanie also did same, after we had combined our monies, the money left was GH¢3, each person was handed a one cedi note.

There was no talk of tipping the waitress; we just wanted to get going.
Once we got outside, those outside stopped eating and started looking our direction. It was already past nine, and the obvious thing to them was that we would probably pick a taxi; we ignored the taxis honking and walked together.
Three cedis couldn’t take us to our homes, so our only means of getting home was to walk half way.

At Kaneshie, Melanie and Bridget who were going the same way bade me goodnight, promising to call later to see if I had arrived home.

I stood at Kaneshie, and even though the driver’s mates were calling, I knew I had to wait. It didn’t take long till a desperate vehicle came my way.
‘Are you going?’ The driver asked in the local dialect and I behaved as if I didn’t really want to board it. After more hesitation, I said, ‘I only have one cedi’

‘Oh, come, don’t worry’ that was all the persuasion I needed. I sat at the front seat of the bus and we chatted like old friends. He almost forgot to take the fare, but I handed over my last one cedi, and walked penniless into my room. It was then that I really appreciated the efforts of the guys who were always footing our bills

 

By: Debbie Yemeh

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