Driving to work one morning, I noticed that the street hawkers who sell wire artwork down William Nicol were selling the most beautiful hoopoes. I wanted one!
The traffic light changed to green and as I was about to drive off, promising myself I’d be back the very next day, the seller handed me the beautiful bird through the car window saying, “It’s yours! Just come back whenever you can with payment!” and waved me goodbye.
I did go back. I bought two hoopoes but I also asked him if he’d make me a rooster. Of course I will, exclaimed Etu with a big smile!
The glow in his eyes as I commissioned him to make me this artwork was magnetic. He suddenly went from pesky street hawker to artist. He quizzed me about size, colour, bead work and time frames. I described my kitchen and what I had in mind. He took this brief so seriously!
A few days later I drove up to his spot on the side of street, there it stood! It stared at me from the front seat of the car all the way to the office and I had the giggles the entire day!
What Etu didn’t realize is that he had won my trust the day he willingly gave me the first hoopoe. In fact, I didn’t hesitate going back. The fact that I could ask him to make me something unique appealed to me. Most people don’t even acknowledge hawkers but I’ve changed the way I see them. They’re marketers, just like myself. They’re salesmen. But most of all, they’re artists. They just needed to be given a chance.
I love my rooster!