After much urging, I have decided to pen a story of how I made my first million before the age of thirty.
Assuredly, many here will concur with me that a million shillings in cash is not a joke but there are a few lucky ones who feel that getting your own million in your twenties is not something to be proud of. They are rich because they were born in rich families. All in all, hard work is not an exception.
When I finished my first bachelor’s degree in the university, the only senior person I knew was the assistant chief back in the village. Therefore the slogan of “connection” and things to do with it could not have worked out easily for me.
I had expectations that some prominent people would show up during my graduation day. Although I knew clearly that my village had no prominent man, except a neighbor who was a famous fruits vendor at Rwompo Open Air Market.
I was sure that my parents had the capacity to organize and mobilize successful outsiders to come to my graduation ceremony. To my disappointment, only my parents, my uncles, and my cousins together with my aunts and a few neighbors showed up into my graduation party.
However, there was also a surprise special appearance of the assistant chief who came with his second hand Captain Motorcycle. I wasn’t impressed at first but later in the day, it turned out to be very colorful.
We sang and danced with joy as one of my aunties who is alleged to be in possession of prophetic grace led with prayers of thankfulness. It was a good day.
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Later the following week life was totally different. I didn’t know where to start. My parents pressured me asking whether I had applied for any of the many jobs that were being advertised on the radio. Both my father and mother had their own radios and would pester me every time they heard the adverts. This was even before I got my certificates.
Some people who had promised to help me secure a job once I am through with studies were now nowhere to be found.
One day I paid a visit to my assistant chief at his home and he told me that there were no local jobs for graduates like me in the village.
He advised me to go to the city citing that it is only in the city where offices that could accommodate a mechanical engineer like me. I went home sad for knew no one in the city. Forget about knowing anyone, I did not know where the city was.
I took my primary school studies in the nearby village primary school and later joined a nearby Day secondary school. Later I was admitted to Chuka University which was 40 kilometers away from my lovely Rwompo village. So I had no bearing in the city.
Our county Meru has rich and fertile soil and agriculture is a flourishing enterprise. I send many application letters to various offices and did not even receive a single email let alone a regret calling. I was frustrated and decided to start farming, to raise capital, to open a business. I never give up easily.
In Meru, from the region I come from, banana is the main cash crop. I negotiated with my father he showed me an acre piece of land where start my farming. He blessed me and said, “My son whatever you shall lay your hands on it will be successful”.
By the look of things, mother had began losing hope in me because now as it was nearly two years after my graduation.
I intercropped some other fast-growing crops like okra and eggplants. These take around 45 to 90 days before reaching the first harvest. Remember my main aim was to raise at least something small to start a business enterprise.
Within the first three months, I began earning from the other crops. The growing period of banana is nearly ten months when under proper maximum care.
I also got a company from my friend nicknamed Wako.
Wako was my best friend at the university. He was from an unknown region in Ukambani. He came to Meru because he had secured a good job in the biggest Motel in the town as a waiter. Before he established himself, I accommodated him in my village room. He was a guy with critical and creative ideas.
In the morning he would leave for the motel and I would spend the day tilling in my new shamba. In the evening we brainstormed on how to get rich. Actually, he was more than a brother to me.
One evening he came back home very excited. His laptop bag on his hands. he usually carried his bag on his back. On this day something was definitely up.
That night Wakuo talked in his sleep ” Hio Pesa nimechimbia Chini ya Huo mi HAPO the MTU asichukue” (Let no one take the money that is out there under that tree).
I woke up secretly and trust me I was able to find five hundred thousand US dollars sealed well in a green shopping bag. I took two hundred thousand dollars, hid in my banana farm, and returned to sleep like nothing had happened.
The following morning, he is the one who woke me up in the morning. He explained to me how a certain white couple came to their motel. they started quarreling and a serious fight broke out.
The man who was a coward ran out of the motel as the woman used everything that was on the table to beat him. In the melee, they left a bag that had the money.
We went to the nearest bank in Nkubu Town and exchanged the dollars into Kenyan shillings. Wake being a truly good friend, gave me one million into my account and told me to go and expand my banana farm.
That is how ladies and gentlemen, I made my first million before I was 30.
Dr Peterson Kirika