Metropole Magazine

 
Today's Weather: Abuja NG: Partly Cloudy, Day 360|Night 260

            
10 Mar

As a child, Mrs. Obianuju Adams noticed one thing about her mother’s baking business: every time a child came over and there was cake, their eyes lit up as bright as the sun and a smile smeared on both sides of their faces. It was then that Mrs. Adams decided she too, like her mother, would grow up to become baker. It was a secondary dream, of course, because her heart belonged to Accountancy. So for 17 years, she cut, moulded and brought to life beautiful creations from flour, water, and sugar as a hobby. Six years ago, however, she took to baking professionally and Sunbel Cakes, her bakery, was founded.

Metropole sat down with the baker from Imo State to learn more about her and her business.

What do you do? 

I am a baker and I specialize in making cakes, pies, doughnuts and small chops.

How long have you been baking?

For 17 years but professionally, 6 years

Where did you get the name Sunbel from?

Sunbel is an acronym gotten from my name and that of my husband’s, Sun was derived from Sunday while the Bel comes from Beluchukwu.

What flavours cake do you make?

I bake varieties like lemon, strawberry, vanilla, chocolate, coconut, orange, and red velvet cakes.

Do you make anything asides from cake?

Yes, we make fresh fruit juices and zobo drink.

Is this something you have always wanted to do?

Yes. I developed interest since I was a kid, my Mum bakes and I used to watch her. Also, I love to see and make people happy, and whenever my Mum bakes cakes for her clients, the kids would get so excited whenever they come to the house, so I knew it was something I wanted to do.

What was your dream growing up?

 Growing up as a child, I had a very big dream of becoming an Accountant. I actually aspired to become the Accountant General of the Federation (I still aspire though). Fortunately for me fate led me to study Accounting. Although I achieved dream number one, employment in the country today is a major challenge. Despite applying for so many jobs, none came through, and those that were available, I wasn’t given the opportunity to unleash the potentials in me.

And it just so happened that, like the saying goes “action meets preparedness,” my mum had already prepared me for plan B, which was baking. I don’t regret it and I am eternally grateful to her. But I still look forward to attaining the climax of the Accounting profession.

What are your hobbies? Keeping fit and getting to know more about my business (thank God for the internet).

What challenges have you faced in your business?

 Like every other or most businesses, we have faced some challenges and still facing some. Funding is a major challenge. Even when you try to access loan facility, the interest rate is discouraging. The cost of renting a shop is very high in this town. These are some of the major challenge that I am facing, although we are working around it. But the negative effect cannot be over emphasized especially now that the dollar rate is getting higher by the day.

What do you love about your job?

Whenever I see genuine smile on my customer’s faces I feel so proud. This is a business where you get both constructive and rational destructive comments, and I love that and that is why we as a company have decided to use this slogan “It’s not just about the money but quality and satisfaction.” 

Are you planning on doing more besides fruit juice and cake?

Yes we shall soon introduce Sunbel ice cream and Sharwama.

Where do you see your business 5 years from now?

We are putting up a mechanism in place so that Sunbel Cake will be one of the preferred cake shops and subsequently, the most preferred cake shop.

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19 Feb

Harmattan is long gone but for the dust specks on office desks, and the humid weather seems to be getting only worse. According to forecasts, the average daytime weather in Abuja has been 40C. Little wonder fans are swirling and the air conditionings are whirring, all attempts at keeping cool.

Here are a few things you can to do keep cool this hot season.

Hydrate: It is essential to keep hydrated. Doctors recommend that we drink at least 6 glasses of water a day. We sweat more this period, hence, the need for constant replacement. Switch from drinking hot tea and coffee to iced tea and cold beverages.

 

Wear loose clothing: Right about now, cotton, not leather or silk, should be man’s best friend. Boho dresses, loose culottes, crop tops, flowing skirts and maxi dresses are all currently trending for good reason. Look up these trends online and see how you can mix and match them. Use light colors preferably. For those whose workplaces demand they wear suits all hours of the day, take off your suit when stepping out into the sun for lunch or miscellaneous errands.

Limit outdoor activity: By limiting physical activity, you can reduce your chances of feeling the heat. Instead of going for a run or swim outside, use a treadmill at the gym or go to an indoor swimming pool. Try some indoor activities. Watch movies, read, play video games.

Shower Often:  Staying indoors might be counterproductive for some people. It is good advice to take a bath more than once a day. It keeps you feeling fresh and wards off any pleasant smell that might affect others. Cleanliness is next to godliness too, they say.

Locate Cool Leisure Places: If you must go out, locate cool recreational spots. Go to the movies. The air conditioning at Ceddi and Silverbird are known to be a constant freezer. Go watch a movie with a friend. It’s also the perfect excuse to go out if your AC is not working. For those who don’t want to spend a kobo, the halls at the cinemas, malls, or public library are also cool and the perfect place to while away time. You could also spend some time at gardens, under a shade.

Treat Yourself: Treat yourself to a nice cup of ice cream or chilled fura da nono. Frozen yoghurt will forever be a favorite with many Abuja residents. Have some at Yogurberry or Tutti Frutti. For weight watchers, how about some cold fruit and chilled water? Generally, eat cooler dishes.Take it easy on the spice when cooking, and try to avoid consuming really hot meals.

Accomplish More Tasks at Night: Procrastination has never been a good advice, but this is the time to shift some energy consuming activities to evening when the weather is generally cooler. Wait till around 4 or 5 p.m. to step out and tick off your to do list. For grocery shoppers, most markets are still open till about 7 in the evening, while shopping malls are open till much later hours.

Use Battery Powered or Rechargeable Fans: With the unreliable power supply in the country, it is wise to get a backup, should there be power outage. One can easily get a medium sized rechargeable standing fan in the market for N7, 000, sometimes even less. Charge it when there is power. Otherwise settle for the manual hand fan, they come in different colors, sizes, and some even come in traditional intricate designs.

 

Have further ideas on how to keep cool this period? Tweet @MetropoleMag for suggestions. 

For breaking news out of Abuja, follow us on Twitter: @MetropoleMag

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