Posts Tagged ‘Nigerian Blogger’

Service today was powerful! Whoop!

When I’m in Nigeria, there are very few reasons why I won’t attend House On The Rock The Refuge in Abuja, and first four of a possible five reasons is I’m probably not in Abuja!

This particular Sunday, coming after a particularly horrible week both locally and internationally – Gaza, Air Algiers, Boko Haram, Ebola (hian!) – there was a real sense of fear/panic around me, and I promise you I was checking my calendar and things.

But God always has a word for His people, a word of peace, a word of comfort, a word of hope. And so I listened to testimonies of how God delivered a guy from violent death in an accident where the villagers were asking, “where are the dead bodies?” He came out untouched.

I listened to ‘Praise In This Age’ worship God like a man adores a girlfriend who just said yes to him, heartfelt, feeling in every single word, it was the kiss of my day. He has an incredible testimony too, God delivered him from a violent death too… He was pronounced dead after his accident et al but he’s alive today, with the most ‘goose-bumps inducing’ voice I’ve heard in a while! Dang!

Tehilah choir? Minstrels of life! Whoop! Instrumentation at its peak, and their excitement is always palpable, even when you’re sitting upstairs! Love them! Watched my sister bumping her head (with the cutest smile ever) as they did a hip-hop number today, love, love, love!

The Word. My Daddy Rev Goodheart led the church in a session of prayer, and brethren if you’re not praying for Nigeria you’re on a looooooong thing! What!! How can we be ranking highest for everything evil? Why? Can we not see there are evil forces at work? What else can we do but pray to the God who created us (and this country) to deliver, defend, and preserve His own?

Defend, deliver, and preserve us oh Lord. We will take precautions (like not hang around dodgy places, practice strict hygiene and stay aware of how to minimize risk to Ebola, etc.) but we know if you don’t watch over us and our cities, our efforts are in vain.

Rev Goodheart preached on the help of God, and 7 ways to engage it. Did I need this word or did I?

  1. Admit and acknowledge you need God’s help. No point if you feel like you can run things yourself. Deuteronomy 8: 2. Isaiah 66:3
  2. Denounce/release anything that might ‘help’ God or attempt to share his glory. Yes Sir! Take your eyes/hopes off them! Isaiah 50: 7. Psalm 147: 10-13
  3. Acknowledge/thank Him for past interventions. Works both ways – He comes through for you, but while you wait your faith stays unshaken cos’ you know if He did it before, He can/will do it again. Psalm 103: 1-4
  4. Ask/pray for His help. Hebrews 4: 16. 1 Kings 18. Don’t get weary with it. Ask!
  5. Activate divine help by praising. Psalm 23:3. 2nd Chronicles 20.
  6. Anticipate a God-given strategy will be made available. God always gives instructions when He wants to come through for you. Obedience to divine leading delivers you from destruction.
  7. Keep your eyes on the victory. Have you done everything you should do? Stand. Keep calm. Let God do His thing. Give God what Pastor Obi called ‘sleeping praise’! As in, sleep!

I had a great time at church, loved it! Looking forward to the dedication of the church in September, and Tehilah’s concert! Fingers crossed I can make it!

Written on the 27th of July.

A few things told me I was ready to do an entrepreneurs edition of #31Days31Writers:

  1. I’d run the entrepreneur interview series on my blog several times, and not only did the articles get great feedback, they opened new doors of opportunities for the business owners. I have however been remiss in sourcing entrepreneurs for that category on the blog and so I thought, why not get the entrepreneurs sell themselves?
  2. #31Days31Writers (again on the blog) was a massive success the two times I’ve run it! Again, great feedback, the amazing stories and perspectives from the writers, and it was such a joy having fresh content every single day of the month!

And so I thought, why don’t I dedicate one edition solely to entrepreneurs? Why not celebrate the brilliant young men and women braving the odds working through unfavorable circumstances to keep their dreams visions alive? Why not offer them this platform to showcase their services, strengths, and unique edge?

Why not?

And that’s it folks, this is your space!

Criteria

Be an entrepreneur (defined by Google as “a person who sets up a business or businesses, taking on financial risks in the hope of profit”). Is this you? That’s all the criteria you need!

 

Send 500 words, covering the following

  • What do you do?
  • Why you stated your business/what gets you excited about it?
  • What year did you start this business, and where?
  • Immediate challenges you faced then and what you did to deal with them?
  • Where do you see your business at the end of the year, and in five years?

That’s it! Please send in a photo with your submission – could be of your products/address/whatever you feel compliments your work; feel free to create one for this if you want. Send it to dfairygodsister(at)gmail(dot)com with your name and #31Days31Writers as the subject of the mail, and you’re in!

I’ve got 25 slots open, and the first people to send in their entries, get it!

Start sending in your entries in already!

 

Hi guys!

Been a while I wrote, and I’m sorry… I’ve written a lot of stuff, but as always, the challenge is typing it up for it to make sense for you!

Anyway, something happened last night.

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I was in Lagos last week, and driving to a super interesting service with my girl Francesca we saw so many people crossing the expressway just under the pedestrian bridge. Francesca was super upset (and to be honest I was puzzled by it) but seeing this guy yesterday evening just broke me.

People, please let’s be a bit careful. As we drive, as we walk, as we sit in cars driven by other people, we must be careful. Nigeria (especially) is in a bad place with all sorts of things snuffing out lives (ebola, Boko Haram, Cholera, etc.); the least we can do is cover our bases.

Have a good weekend everyone!

I haven’t been in my village for a good number of years, save the 24 hours I spent in 2010 for my sister’s traditional wedding (there’s got to be a separate chronicle for that someday)!

Anyway, so my cousin was getting married and I told myself that somehow my trip to see Momma would fall within that period. And it did.

The story about the trip to Asaba from Abuja is here; yep it’s the story about the ‘beggi beggi’ woman.

Cue Friday afternoon, and the 25 minutes drive to my village from Asaba; my father believes he’s from a town though, never says he’s from a village. :)

Occurred to us that apart from a 24 hour stint in 2010 when my sister had her traditional wedding – got in from London that morning, road trip to the village, met what I could of the traditional wedding and left the next morning – I’d not been in the village in at least five years so Daddy (Lord bless him) gave a running commentary of pretty much everything that had changed. ‘Changed’ here could mean it’d gotten better or completely gone South by the way.

I ended up tweeting some of the things he said… let’s go grab those off Twitter then.

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Was awesome seeing my uncles and aunts, and super awesome to just take a nice stroll around. People in the villages lead healthier/simpler lives than all of us town folk o, regardless of what privileges we thing we enjoy. For example, I had roasted corn and pear (oka n’ube) and the corn was harvested from a farm near by. Fresh, succulent, and soft!

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Yes Sir!!!

By the way, electricity was also a lot more constant than what we have in Asaba, no jokes. And I hear they are not saddled with bills (fixed or energy charges) that we town folk have to deal with either. Next thing y’all will hear I’ve relocated to my village o!

Before I forget, do you know where bitter kola comes from? So I was strolling with Uncle B (my favorite of all my father’s brothers), and he showed me this tree and told how bitter kola is derived. Plus he has lots of the ‘ugolo’ trees on his land, anyone want to bring us an export proposal?

Screenshot 2014-07-13 21.59.17And you know you’re in the village when your uncle stops a random stranger in the street and introduces you to them because you’re related!!
The evening, the morning, wedding day!

Got up early, did some work and then a bit of reading, and then prepped for my cousin’s wedding. She still didn’t know I was around, he he he.

We got to church and I think the last time I was inside this particular church I was a child. As in child, child. Still looks beautiful though, wonder why we don’t invest in ‘protecting’ all these aged buildings. See potential tourist site o…

Took pictures with my uncles, and a selfie with uncle B!

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Went off to the reception, and things stood out for me so I tweeted (me and Twitter sha)…

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Na wa!

 

Eating, dancing, and gifting over, it was time to head back to Asaba, and I didn’t want to go.

Pertinent note from Daddy as we crossed the Niger Bridge and I wondered why people were risking life and limb to board buses on the bridge going into Asaba.

Apparently, if they board on the bridge, the trip costs N100 because it is classed as ‘local’ (because some people see the bridge as part of Delta) but if they board anywhere in Onitsha (even if it’s just before said bridge), it becomes an out-of-state trip and it goes up to N150, maybe even N200.

And that my darlings, is the story of my trip to the greatest village/town on earth!

 

 

PS – Written on the 11th (and completed on the 11th) of July.

Sometime in the middle of the month I became a little fed-up of sending countless reminders to people to send in their pieces. By the 24th I’d missed two days, and I didn’t want to miss anymore, so I stopped mailing people and used the opportunity to publish pieces I’d written since June.

And suddenly, people started getting in touch to say their posts were almost ready. Lol. But then Ore emailed his, apologizing for being late, and without reading it (or checking the word count), I replied saying I felt he overshot the word count but I would publish today. He was sure he did 600 words and he said so. He was right, and I’m sorry.

I just read it now and it must have been God who made me pick this post for today. Dang!! Home truth after home truth, homie hit every note with this piece! Like, I’m so excited with it! Whoop! Feels like such a beautiful end to a beautiful series, and I couldn’t be any more chuffed!

Enjoy!

 

I bought a pack of Post-It notes today.

Or maybe I didn’t, I’m not sure.

Okay, I didn’t.

Seems like I need to constantly remind myself to remember.

And also to never forget that my life is beautiful.

Because it is.

But how did I get here?

 

Several times this year I have felt deeply sorry for myself, wallowing in self-generated moroseness as I contemplated my apparent lack of achievements. I would waste hours drawing up comparisons between myself and others who seem to have gotten it together, whatever that means. In the end, there would be no lesson learned and no grand plan for a swift turnaround conceived. A miserable state of affairs, if I may say so myself.

I wasn’t doing myself any good and I knew it, but the habit had become far too ingrained for me to dispatch it with a swift kick. And so I carried on in this pathetic way, patching my doubt-ridden self-esteem inwardly with hollow motivational speeches delivered without any feeling to my equally unbelieving reflection in the mirror, and outwardly with smiles so superficial that could very well have been velcroed onto my face.

Until one day when, out of the greys (the skies never seemed blue then), I asked myself the one question I had never before thought to ask:

So I need a turnaround, but a turnaround from what exactly?

The answers, they tumbled out from the depths of my soul of their own accord:

1. From a family that treats me like I’m a godsend?

2. From a job I’m incredibly good at?

3. From the God who loves me unconditionally even though I have failed Him too many times to count?

And on I went with the list of positives, like a man who all is life had been convinced that he was lame but suddenly found that he could not just walk but fly.

 

Stacked up this way, my blessings dwarfed my mountain of supposed underachievement. You see, I had been wearing my misery-coloured shades for so long that all the good things in my life had become near-invisible and my measure of success was all the stuff I didn’t have, stuff I didn’t even need to be happy.

Bear with me while I struggle not to come off as preachy, please.

I’m truly sorry if you have no place for the God of the universe in your world, He makes all the difference. I’m as sure of this as I have no doubt that if I eat a meal of boiled beans and go to bed right afterwards, I will wake up with an upset stomach. That has never failed to happen, and God has never failed to come through for me. That is no small comfort.

So I am thankful for my faith in Him. That faith will guide me to everything good. At my own pace. In His time. I’m not in a hurry, lest my feet find paths they were not made to follow.

I am no longer afraid of the world’s critical examination of my life, no longer afraid that my shortcomings will be spotlighted and my carefully cultured thick skin will rupture as soon as the shower of prickly insults cleverly disguised as ‘good’ advice begins to rain down on me.

I have learned to count my blessings, and they have begun to grow.

And because I have been counting, I am becoming a blessing myself.

If that’s not an achievement, I don’t know what is.

The rest of the year will be fine. I look forward to more counting.

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Boom! What did I tell you? Absolutely loved it!

Ok, I’m writing this aboard a Discovery Air flight to Abuja, spent the last few days in Lagos.

As we were taxiing (and I was trying to drown out the voice of the air hostess), I looked out the window and saw one of the ground controllers – the guys with jumbo-sized, orange headphones and neon-colored batons signaling to a plane in the rain, and the rain was really pouring down.

Photo Credit - gettyimages.com

This is what I meant… Photo Credit – gettyimages.com

Made me angry, like really angry.

Why didn’t he have a raincoat on? Is it that his employers don’t know that it rains, or they just don’t care? If this is about saving money, does that compare to the man-hours that will be lost when this guy falls ill/catches his death? How much does a raincoat cost?

So annoying!

Same way I’ve never been impressed with Policemen or traffic wardens doing their duties under the rain. Does it speak to the dedication of the officers? Yes. But, it also speaks to their inability to demand responsibility from leaders/bosses who are clearly irresponsible.

Who sends their child to school without books and a pen/pencil? Who heads to the farm without a hoe, cutlass, etc.? Why do we set our people up to fail?

I’m really ticked off about it because the ‘I-don’t-care’ attitude we show in little things always manifests in the big things, and by that time, too much has been destroyed/affected. As my friend Chude said to one of his staff recently, ‘these little inefficiencies add up and total huge losses’. I totally agree!

How many times in the last few months have we heard that our soldiers stationed especially in the North East are ill-equipped? How can our military that have successfully quelled unrests in other nations suddenly be out-gunned/out-weaponed by insurgents? What with the billions of naira allocated to them each year? How?

Think of it, one person in charge would probably have wiggled out of purchasing weapons over the years because there was relative peace, maybe even ‘redirected’ monies meant for training the officers. So now, they’re falling short.

That’s why you meet some police officers, and it seems like the only skill they have is gauging hoe much you’ve got in your bag so they can beg/greet/cajole it off you.

Ladies and gentlemen, little foxes will always spoil the vine. Always.

 

PS – Dear Lagosians, I don’t know what y’all mean when you crow ‘Fashola/Lagos is working’. How can I need a canoe to move around just because it’s rained? SMH

 

Written on the 25th of July.

 

 

Have you ever gotten lost before? Whether driving, walking, boating or flying, have you ever just stopped and thought, “hang on, I’m lost, I don’t know where I am?”

I know I have! I’ve blogged about wandering off as a three-year old so you can imagine I started doing this early, lol. J Most recently I dropped a friend off after a night out and in the midst of navigating my way out of her zones, I realized I’d been driving for at least 22 minutes.

Now, I was going to ring her to say the inevitable had happened (because she’d teased that I’d lose my way), then I remembered we’d lambasted the electricity companies because there wasn’t any power when we got to hers and her phone was dead.

So I said a prayer, focused on remembering how I got to where I was, and then I retraced my steps. 20 minutes later, I was home safe. Read all of that as God took over, and led me home.

What if I didn’t find my way though, in that dead of night? What if it wasn’t in town or anywhere in civilization but in some desert, the woods, a thick overflowing forest, you know, all those things Hollywood movies are made of?

To be honest, these were the thoughts that crossed my mind when Alexandra from ManCrates got in touch to ask what I’d fit in a potential survival kit. For the purpose of this article, I’m allowed 4 items, a 5th because I am a good person :) . Also, all the items are important to me, so don’t laugh!

  1. A duffel bag that would never empty of my favorite foods and drinks. Don’t even laugh (remember my warning) – how am I supposed to live without food and drink? How am I supposed to tell this story if I die of starvation? Very important biko.
  2. My Bible. Not because it sounds like a must-have, or because it formed one of the three items Agbani Darego, Nigeria’s only Miss World said she’d have in her survival pack. The Bible is ageless, timeless, and a source of great comfort and reassurance. Besides, who else to maintain direct contact with than God? Definitely on my list.
  3. My Moleskine. Wherever I go, I see/find a story. Truth be told, if everything I wrote in my jotters could automatically appear on my blogs, you would either spend your lives on my blog trying to catch up on pieces or you’d run away! How much more when there’s a proper, proper story of my surviving (whatever) to be told?
  4. My fleece. I call it my ‘comfort cloth’; it is dark blue, wraps around me nicely and is light enough not to be heavy yet keeps me warm when I need it to. And incredibly, regardless of how many times I wash it, I can always (somehow) sniff my nephew and my late Aunty Pat on it. My everlasting reminder of everyone I love dearly.
  5. An Internet-ready smartphone. Take pictures, make a video or two, play a few games maybe (particularly in love with Who Wants To Be A Millionaire and The Weakest Link), and most importantly, call/tweet for help! Am I supposed to stay lost forever?

What would you have in yours? What four things can you not do without?

The bible says, “take heed what you hear”; ever come across that before? I know I have.

Based on the three stories I’m going to share below though, perhaps for both males and females, we can/ should introduce “take heed, who you marry”.

Before then, am I married myself? No; matter of fact I’m single (so we can get that out of the way early).

Ready to share 3 stories with me? Without messing the facts up, I’ll try to protect the identities of all three couples (Or ex-couples)

  • Boy meets girl who is in her late 20’s and under a bit of pressure by her married siblings and of course her folks. Therefore, she ‘allows’ a lot if things and her family foots the bill minus (N15, 000/ $90) that the guy contributes to the entire preparations. Less than a year later, he’s moved out of her house (where she pays rent) because amongst other things she’s not ‘submissive’, and her family has returned the dowry they collected. The End.
  • Boy meets high-flyer type chic, get married, have a beautiful daughter. Husband invests the Mrs.’ money (huge sums) in a string of failed deals/leads. Of course they start to have problems, wife starts to suffer emotionally and at the peak of their trouble (when he stops her from seeing their daughter for a period of time) she develops high blood pressure, and is said to be acting ‘weird’. At the time I wrote this, she’d been buried less than 10days ago
  • Boy meets girl and everyone thinks they’re a gorgeous couple except the ones who knew the inner workings of the relationship. She hits him, continuously, ridiculing him sometimes in the presence of his friends; did I mention they were engaged to be married? Man snapped one day and called it off. Now she says he ‘used’ her, and has wasted her time.

Three stories done. Might seem like it’s all doom and gloom ladies and gentlemen, but I promise you it’s not. For each of those tragic stories, I promise you there are ten, hundreds and thousands of success stories around. Even better, you have friends and family with super successful marriages, so you’ll agree it’s not a myth.

I stumbled across a blog today (dunno how I didn’t hear about them before)- Naijahusband.com where a man and his wife (Naijawife) chronicle the ups and downs, happy and not so happy times in their marriage. Not a hundred percent sure it’s a real life or brilliant scripting but you should have a look. Really interesting stuff there!

Also, I read somewhere once that marrying the wrong person is not only hell on earth, but will lead you to hell because of the amount of mistakes/missteps you will make.

Ladies (especially), no pressure at all. Don’t let anyone put you under pressure, and don’t do it to yourself too (I know about self-inspired pressure don’t worry). When he comes, he will come. There’ll be no shadow of doubt.

Guys too, no pressure, whether from family/peers or self-imposed. When you meet the ‘her’ that God designed for you, trust me you’ll know.

Who best to confirm your choice than The One who created you two? Get on your knees ladies and gentlemen, and ask Him to bring them to you! And He will!

While you wait, improve yourself, strengthen /solidify your relationship with your God (who is your first love ANYWAY), and have fun!

PS – Written on the 12th of July.

 

 

 

 

I decided to go visit my folks in Asaba (especially my dear Momma who I haven’t seen in 11 months) and so I packed a bag (or box, since my Royal Majesty doesn’t know how to travel light), and off to the airport I went.

By the way, Abuja folks, there is this new taxi service at the airport called ‘Viko’. If you take them to or from the airport, your next trip is free. All you need to do is text them your desired pick up location, time, and contact details 24 hours before your next flight and someone will come for you. And on time too! I used them so I can tell.

So I got to the airport, and funnily that’s where I met Emem who I’d tried to meet up with the night before. We had a quick discussion/meeting before her flight was called and she pushed off.

I went into the Biobak in the departure lounge and bought a pie and donkwa (Northern snack made of groundnuts and peppery spices). My flight was called, and I went to board. Waiting for my boarding pass to be checked, some lady came and stood before me on the queue. Of course I didn’t stand for it but it made me smile. What was she thinking? I tweeted…

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Then I went to board, and because I have the habit of leaving this particular handbag open the person to do the body scan saw my small bottle of water and said I had to drop it. I tried to explain that I needed my water and wasn’t a law against water on the plane but you know how we Nigerians get when we only have an instruction in our heads; no room for discretion – we just keep repeating the instruction over and over again. By the time she she’d said, “ madam you cannot take the water on board – it is not allowed” the 4th time, I left the water with her. Yes I was fuming. Ok, only maybe just a little bit.

Got to the door of the aircraft and I met two members of the cabin crew and a/the pilot. I turned to the one smiling (a guy) and asked how much water I was allowed, and he said one. I was thinking of the miniature bottles they offer and so I asked if I could get a second one because I’d been asked to drop mine and I’d been feeling pretty dehydrated all day so I was a little upset.

Pilot (who I wasn’t talking to) said, “you are not allowed to take liquids on a plane anywhere in the world”. Fallacy. So many things wrong with that statement (including the fact that I wasn’t speaking to him in the first place) so I said, “it’s not true”. Then he goes, “ don’t teach me my job”. Ticked me off so I very quickly said, “don’t have any plans to teach you your job. More importantly, I wasn’t speaking to you so if you’re not the one who will serve refreshments later please let me conclude this conversation”. Turned back to the guy, confirmed I would get an extra bottle, and then I went to my seat (after warding off some politician who had said hello earlier and now wanted to hold my hand). Why? Cos I’m blind or unable to lead myself to my seat? Arrghh!! Tweeted…

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Of course there had to be someone on my seat (because it doesn’t rain but pour). While I tried to gather my composure enough to say so, another hostess came to say it was free seating. I thanked her, and moved to the next row that had a window seat only for the lady sat on the aisle seat to roll her eyes at me when I asked her to let me get in. Made a big show of standing up for me to get through but I was too exhausted (physically and mentally) to even bother. No energy.

I sat down, took a few deep breaths and smiled. Then I brought out what I’m reading at the moment, “The Social Media President”, brought out my donkwa too. Next few tweets capture what happened next.

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Beggi beggi, after rolling her eyes at me. Took all of me not to chuckle.

Got to Asaba ok, and ran into the loving arms of my Momma (after helping some lady trying to coordinate her infant, handbag, and a small box), and as soon as we started gisting on the drive home, everything else (pilot, beggi beggi, lady at the foot of the aircraft) paled. Felt super to be home!

xx

PS – I got my water. Two bottles.

PSS – Liquids are allowed on planes, depends on airport, quantity, where you got the liquid (naturally Duty Free Area works rather than before you cross security). I wasn’t just channeling drama. At MM2 in Lagos, normally depending on who it is, they’ll ask you to take a sip of it and then it can go through. Lord knows what (all over the world this ‘international pilot’ was referring to).

PSSS – this post was written on the 10th of July. :)

PSSSS – Flew from Abuja to Lagos a few days ago. Flight was hella smooth! Let’s not forget the smooth, soothing voice of the pilot *wink* …Slept right through it, and of course, I tweeted… And learned his surname is actually Norton.

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*wink*

Henry is deep. So deep. I don’t know what else to say. He’s been my friend for like 4, 5 years, and he’s just deep! Does he annoy me? Of course! You need to see us arguing debating stuff on Twitter. But there’s always something to be learned, and what’s a relationship if there’s no growth?

This is one piece in the entire series that resonated so much with me, it made me emotional.

The carnage caused by terrorism so far in 2014 is unprecedented. The insurgents have become even more brazen. They have made it look as if there is nothing security forces will try that will work. It has been harrowing.

While I walked to church this morning, with roads across and adjourning the church premises cordoned off with armed, anxious looking soldiers and policemen standing on guard at the entrances and at strategic positions, my mind did a very quick time travel to what life was about 5 years ago.

Sunday mornings were days of bliss, with everyone out dressed in gay attires, with smiles and expectation of a miracle from their God. There was no need for soldiers to be around, except maybe they came for Armed Forces Remembrance day thanksgiving. Police was around, in very few places, just to maintain law and order. Barricades in front of a church would have been seen as strange. There was peace then, relative peace. A kind of peace we took for granted and would do anything to have now.

We are at war.

The other day after the EMAB bomb blast at the end of June, I came across footage of what actually went down that fateful afternoon. The first thing that caught my eye on the video was a hand, lying lonely on the sidewalk, blown away from the wrist. I saw a girl, a “pure water” hawker. She couldn’t have been anything more than 15 years old. She was dead. Burnt with only her hair remaining. She died face down with her legs blown off. I also saw a man, badly burnt. So badly burnt all you could see was the blackened form of what used to be his body. Both of his legs had been blown off. He laid still. By the time the camera panned back to him, he was moving. He opened his eyes, tried to get up, he couldn’t. He looked down at his legs and collapsed again. He wasn’t dead, but I doubted if he knew where he was. I saw a lot of things I would rather not continue describing.

5 years ago, these kinds of things were alien. People don’t just get blown up by a car that a well dressed man parked in front of a shopping mall and walked away.

2014 has been gruesome.

A guy I used to do some work with, Emmanuel is still in hospital recuperating. He was a victim of the Nyanya bomb blast. He had only just got married 2 weeks earlier. We don’t know if he is ever going to walk again. He is only one of the lucky who are alive to tell their story from the two blasts that rocked Nyanya Motor Park.

The first half of 2014 made it evident that we can’t take peace and life for granted anymore. Every day we are told to avoid crowded places like markets, places of entertainment, places of worship, motor parks and bus stops. Places we didn’t need to think twice before going to in the past.

It is sobering that our lives now have to be remodeled so that we can at least have a chance to remain alive. We don’t know where the next bomb will go off. We don’t know what next the terrorists are planning, we don’t know if all of a sudden a bullet will whizz over our heads and hit the unfortunate man in front of us. We don’t even know if that unfortunate man will be us or our family member.

My name is Henry Okelue, Nigerian and a Public Servant; I miss the peace I used to know. I miss it so, so dearly.

HenryOkelue