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Category Archives: Memoirs

I just love awards, don’t you?

Hey guys, Memoirs of a woman with chutzpah recently won another award, bestowed on us by a really cool mom-diva I only just discovered- Chinny! Here’s a link to her blog: http://isetfiretotherain.wordpress.com/2011/10/05/you-blog-i-blog/ πŸ˜‰

It was quite unexpected and with utmost delight and lots of giggles, I wanna dedicate the award to my fans especially the ones who send me comments via fb, linkedin, blackberry messenger, face to face, twitter and especially those who take the time out to post comments on the blog site. Also wanna dedicate the award to my fellow bloggers both friends and frenemies, my old editor (you-know-yourself), my ‘heart’ and my whole army of family and friends. Love you guys and grateful for the support. All glory to God!!! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

The award came with some conditions (no free lunch in Freetown) πŸ™‚ Here they are:

1.Thank the person who gave you the award and link back to them in your post.
2.Share 7 things about yourself.
3.Pass this Award along to 15 recently discovered blogs and let them know about it!

Ok here goes…
I’d like to thank Chinny for the award, she’s a great writer and I enjoyed reading 7 awesome things bout her and can’t wait to explore her blog. πŸ˜‰ I wanna assure her that with the heart she’s got beating beneath her left breast, she’ll always be a great mom and also warn her that hating onions makes her more prone to a vampire attack (or is it garlic?) πŸ˜‰
Anyway thanks so much for the recognition and thanks for reading my blog.
(There’s a link to her blog above)

Now this is the scary part…7 more things about me??? *can’t look*
Gave you 27 on my birthday, soon you’ll know the color of the pata I wear on Sundays. :O Geez! TMI… Stalkers keep off, don’t make me go gaga on your ass!
*Diva moment over*

Now back to the task at hand:
1. I love cartoons and I totally love Disney channel on DSTV…my bf thinks it’ll make me dull πŸ™‚ but I figure you fry the same brain-cells watching African Magic as you fry re-living your childhood on a flat screen!
2. I used to be un-adventurous when it came to travelling but all of a sudden my parents are complaining that I can’t keep my feet in one town for 2 minutes. I blame NYSC because before I got posted to Ondo state against my wishes, the only place I’d travelled to alone was Johannesburg while in med school for a one month electives program! Now in less than a year, I’ve been to Kaduna, Abuja, Benin, Akure and Ibadan. πŸ™‚ More travels to come…at least, till the day I become the ‘good wife’.
3. I’ve been an MC at three bridal showers! When my friends convinced me to do the first one, I wondered how on earth they could have thought I’d be great for the part and despite my un-confessed stage fright, they made me do it and now I’m considering a career in it! πŸ™‚ ‘Jill of all trades’
4. I recently discovered that onions don’t make me cry anymore. Not sure if I’ve run out of tear-resources but I remember my struggle with onions and all the remedies I tried in a bid to look sexy while chopping ’em. (Trust me a runny nose, eyes bloodshot from crying and black streaks of mascara running down my face do not a charming cook make!)
I tried refrigerating the onions and tried chewing gum while cutting. Even tried facing a particular direction, can’t remember if it was against the wind or facing the wind but suddenly, I’m a hardened cook and those 10 onions had nothing on me! πŸ™‚
5. I believe no price is too much to pay for comfort! Well I mean monetary price oh, not blood and tears! On several occasions I have paid the hairdresser extra to come do my hair at home, I recently paid the phone guy to deliver my new blackberry at home and I have been known to pay the optician, shoe/dress-seller, tailor etc just so I can avoid the blazing sun and traffic! I sacrifice my hard-earned dough taking cabs when a car is not available and would rather sit at home than jump a bus if I can help it. Practising for the life of the rich and famous πŸ™‚
6. I love the wind in my face and after I got over my phobia of okadas last year and actually rode one, I’d have been un-stoppable save for the fact that my mum forbade us from sitting atop an okada in Lagos. She wants us alive and with our limbs intact! I confess that I have broken this rule once or twice in Lagos (sorry mum, had to!) But outside Lagos, I’m a badass passenger! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚
7. My sisters call me ‘the crazy perfectionist!’ Hehehe πŸ˜‰
From time to time, my alter-ego comes out and I become a clean freak. The girl who decides out of the blues that the whole house needs spring-cleaning and surface cleaning isn’t ok or that an abandoned store-room needs to be put in order! I guess I do have a ‘choleric’ lurking in there somewhere. When I was doing my internship at LUTH, my colleagues used to call me a machine cos once I was in work mode, I was unstoppable and never tired. Pity my sanguine is the dominant me and I do enjoy lazy days a tad too much… πŸ˜‰

Now time to pass this award on to 15 recently discovered blogs…
I didn’t know there were so many blogs out there till the Nigerian blog awards. Before then, I only knew about Bellanaija (http://bellanaija.com), Memoirs of a slu…shhkid (http://www.360nobs.com/category/360-randoms/memoirs-of-a-slu-shhkid/), Femmelounge (http://femmelounge.org) and Diary of an ex-schoolnerd (http://exschoolnerd.net). Still love these websites but now I have so many more that are competing for my heart especially the new ones that remind me of how scary but fun starting a blog can be.

So today I’d like to bestow this award to 15 blogs that I find thoroughly fascinating!
In no particular order…
1. …What I think: http://babaneyo.wordpress.com/
2. Chronicles of a student who knew too little: http://www.pipishakes.blogspot.com/
3. Chronicles of da naΓ―ve: http://boyindizzl.wordpress.com/
4. Throes of a Safi boi: http://leonmacedon.wordpress.com/
5. Donsege: http://donsege.wordpress.com/
6. Ebuwa Alhaji speaks: http://ebuwa-alhajispeaks.blogspot.com/
7. Out of my head: http://ladetawak.wordpress.com/
8. Feisty pen: http://berryfeistypen.blogspot.com/
9. FAB blog: http://blog.fabmagazineonline.com/
10. Rose of Sharon: http://roseofsharonwrites.blogspot.com/
11. eTransformed: http://etransformed.wordpress.com/
12. GISTDOTCOM: http://gistdotcom.com/
13. The toolsman’s blog: http://thetoolsman.wordpress.com/
14. Good Nigerian Girl: http://goodnigeriangirl.com/
15. Le Dynamique Proffeseur: http://dynamiqueprofesseur.blogspot.com/

Hey winners, the same 3 conditions apply- scroll up to read ’em again. (I don’t make the rules!) πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

I wanted to put Myne Whitman writes: http://mynewhitmanwrites.com/ because I absolutely love her but she had already received the award! (Much love sis!)

So thanks again Chinny for giving me something new to write about today and of course, for the award!
Memoirs of a woman with chutzpah is a year old this month (yay me!)…I wonder what would’ve happened if I wasn’t bored to my ears that fateful afternoon???

Have a great day peeps…only a couple of hours left and we get to say TGIF!!! xoxoxo πŸ˜‰

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17 Comments

Posted by on October 6, 2011 in Memoirs

 

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Lagos traffic…the never ending story!

Β  Sorry I’ve been off radar for a while. The hassle of moving towns, getting a new job and developing a whole new routine got me busy as a bee with my mind doing cartwheels. I still had time for a mini-vacation in Benin tho’. πŸ˜‰ That town does things for me that the hustle and bustle of Lagos could never do. Everybody needs a rustic getaway every once in a while, won’t call it a vacation per se cos vacations imply laulau spending and please note I wasn’t talking about your village, that would be too cliche! πŸ˜‰

Of course I’m gonna miss Abuja and all the family and friends I left behind not to mention the peace and quiet and obvious laid back attitude everyone has. Even the hustle is done in slow motion unlike Lagos. Too bad Boko Haram has got everyone there living in fear. Every public place has become a checkpoint for our Naija bomb squad. Even women’s handbags are no more sacred, they get to be brutally ransacked when visiting some government offices. I heard the outgoing corpers in Abuja won’t be getting a POP in Abuja for security reasons, ah well they are better off stressed than dead. Was reading in the papers that MEND sent a letter that they plan to bomb Eagle’s square on Independence day and I found it amusing. The MEND group like a second wife are obviously bemused that Boko Haram has stolen all their shine and public spotlight. I guess no matter how full of terror a terrorist is, he still needs attention like a diva on a red carpet! πŸ˜‰ May God protect us all as MEND and Boko Haram fight over the coveted most feared position this Independence day. Truly I pray for a peaceful 1st of October. Enough lives have been lost and our land stinks of shed blood. GEJ we need to get you some Redbull so you can put more energy into curbing this menace. Meanwhile your people are solidly behind you.

One thing that will always make Abuja seem attractive to me is the lack of traffic. It took me more than an hour to go from Ozone cinemas to UNILAG yesterday and I silently told myself ‘Welcome to Lasgidi!!!’ Anyone who lives in a major city knows there’s a price to pay. Whether you are a pedestrian, cyclist, motorist or molue-ist every morning, every evening and sometimes in the afternoon just when the sun is hottest, the combo of blazing sun, blaring horns and speedometers reading 20km/hr (sometimes less) is as common as NEPA taking light and the sacrifice you pay for being urban!

I thought about making a list of the things that cause traffic, but that wouldn’t be quite an interesting list since the causes are usually the same. The biggest in my opinion being some impatient person usually a danfo driver who breaks a traffic law, tries to overtake and ends up facing on-coming vehicles and has his band of follow-follow goons behind him thereby causing a traffic jam cos the cars can neither move forward nor backwards. Other common causes are jalopies breaking down, flat tyres, LASTMA and MOPO picking the wrong time to do their jobs, accidents, floods, bad roads, armed-robbers and pedestrians competing with cars for road space. Many times the people would prefer to sit in their cars cussing and complaining rather than getting out of the car and tryna solve the problem. Thank goodness for the Lagos agberos who are God-sent for such a time as this. They immediately take on the role of traffic-warden aka yellow fever when the uniformed, pot-bellied men have gone AWOL!

So, instead I thought about the funny stuff you see people do in their cars or while sitting in a bus, when stuck in a traffic jam, things that you’d only see done in Lagos traffic! Naija πŸ˜‰ Here are my top ten!
10.) Pinging/Tweeting: Since blackberries became pure water, Lagosians have made it their duty to update their status or tweet about traffic. Giving a second by second account of how hot or annoyed or late you are thanks to traffic has become the most common Lagos status update followed by ‘MTN ooooh’ and ‘Nepa please bring light’ and of course the occasional ‘Baba God noni!’ Usually one eye is on the phone and the other eye on the lookout for LASTMA or theiving agberos depending on your current location!
9.) Get out of the car to see what’s going on. This is a favorite for most men in traffic. They usually do it for aproko reasons though a select few do it to go pee in the gutter or hail the gala man or fan ice-cream seller for some quick chops! Usually they aggravate traffic cos they are not in the car when the cars begin to move leading to more horns honking. Other times, they cause unnecessary panic by peddling false rumours i.e thieves operating in front!
8.) Become the DJ of Club ‘Eko bridge’. Yeah everyone has a radio in the car, from the cab guy to the guy in the S-class and when the traffic’s heavy and cars are crawling, radios blaring usually substitute for car horns. From owambe songs to hip hop to gospel to hausa music, everyone has a radio and wants his neighbour to know that regardless of the way my car looks, I beta pass you! Some motorists even go as far as dancing in the stationary car which often looks like a raucous from the outside.
7.) Nose picking. I know all of us have seen this, and most of us have done it. But when traffic is at a stand still, it’s like everything becomes so much more extreme and so much grosser! I guess because you can REALLY see the person digging and scraping and twisting that finger up there and with bated breaths we look to see what will be done with the newly discovered treasure! Ewwww…
6.) Make-up application. No matter where a woman is heading, whether it is home or the office, traffic always provides an excuse for her to look into that tiny visor mirror and re-do her makeup. We could swear that some women pray for traffic to give them some extra time to apply the pancake and to keep the car in one position so the eyeliner doesn’t run when applied.
5.) Eat gala. Trust me if there wasn’t a huge market for gala fostered by the constant Lagos traffic, the street vendors wouldn’t consider it their number one merchandise.
4.) Sleep. Yes traffic in Lagos can be that bad. And after a long day at work, it isn’t unheard of to have to wake the man in front of you with your horn when the cars start moving and he has dozed off. After all there’s no traffic in dreamland…
3.) Honk the horn with all the frustration you have piled up. Who are you honking at? Nobody’s going anywhere. It won’t make the goons causing the hold up in front to get a brain and the noise aggravates the heat so just relax ok…
2.) Make advances. This is ridiculous but twice I have been asked for my number while sitting very bored, in traffic. Usually by the guy in the adjacent car who believes in making the most of a bad situation. I never gave ’em half a chance but I’m sure somewhere in Lagos, a couple are thanking Lagos traffic for leading them to true love!
1. ) Make out. If you haven’t witnessed a horny couple making out in Lagos traffic then you probably haven’t been stuck in traffic enough times at night! From kisses to suspicious female heads bobbing below window level, Lagos is a place where nothing is strange just look and you shall see… πŸ˜‰

Anyway we Lagosians have learnt to adapt. We sweat less, our blood pressure shoots up less in response to the traffic and generally we have learnt to take all the stress in our stride. After all who wan die on top traffic? It is an evil that is here to stay and we are ready to combat, avoid, tackle and bear it any way we can. Many have resorted to waking at 4am, getting to work before 7, dozing in their cars till work starts and then after work, chilling at city mall or silverbird till around 10pm when the traffic eases up. Say ‘amen’ if I just described you! Ah well, it’s all part of the hustle. πŸ™‚

May God bless our hustle, have a great night peeps…xoxoxo πŸ˜‰

 
9 Comments

Posted by on September 29, 2011 in Memoirs, Urban Culture

 

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Happy birthday to me…xxx

Β  Β  Β Mortals cannot choose the day they are born or the day they die, their choices begin and end after these two are made for them…

I didn’t choose to be born on the 5th of September but that was the day my mama’s water broke and the doctor announced it was a girl…that girl turned 27 two days ago…

I decided to do a l’il research about the 5th of September not that I’m superstitious or anything but like every optimist out there, I’ve always known I was special…

First thing I googled was famous people born that day and apparently a couple of odd ball characters share birthdays with me! There were presidents, football players, mathematicians, poets, royalty, actresses, composers and great business men, even famous criminals!

Most of the names didn’t ring a bell but of the ones that did, Jesse James the famous criminal and son of a clergy man struck me the most. Not that I have any criminal intent but here was a man who was born on the same day as dozens of great men and decided to go down in history as a famous bank/train robber! He had a choice, yes times could have been tough and his clergy father over-strict but he blazed his own trail and that was exactly what I wanted to do. Make a name for myself, be so great that at my funeral they’d have to truncate the eulogy cos there’d be too many wonderful things to say and who knows, I could even end up on the 5000 naira note later on, or win a Nobel prize…. πŸ˜‰

All men are born equal…some more equal than others… πŸ˜‰

Someone asked once why all the great men in Nigerian history had no shoes growing up. The thing is, no matter how great you are or how rosy things are in your life, there’s gonna be that thorn, that storm, that weakness, that dark cloud hiding your sunshine. That thing that seeks to define you…How you handle it determines if you’ll be a hero or a zero…

Before I start my list, for all who are wondering how I spent my birthday, here’s a shocker…I spent it in bed! Tossing and turning and reflecting for the greater part of the day. 27 can be a scary age, just 3 years short of 30. I wasn’t all I’d hoped to be but I hadn’t done too badly either. I had goals I’d achieved, goals I’d left hanging and dreams I’d almost forgotten. I also had some hard life decisions to make…At 5.30 pm, I got a call from an old friend that shook me out of my reverie and as I planned the later part of my day, I made the rather hard decision to kiss Abuja goodbye…

The rest of my day was fun thanks to J, E and S and I got some really cool gifts though I was a bit disappointed that everyone skipped the private jet, range rover sports and land in Maitama on my wish list! πŸ™‚

Now to the 27 things that are part of a great list of awesome events that made me the 27 year old I am today….

1) When I’m in love, I forget to eat which is great cos I like food. I’ve been called ijekuje, medemede, grubido and queen gaul because of my love for fast food and sweet things…. At the same time, I am conscious of my weight so alternate between fasts/diets/the gym and large helpings of cake and suya! Thankfully I’m tall… πŸ™‚

2) I wrote and sold my first novel in primary four. It was about a magic mirror. All 10 copies were painstakingly hand-written and illustrated on white paper cut up and arranged in book-form and sold to my classmates for 2 naira, 50 kobo each. My mom never knew! World’s youngest entrepreneur?

3) The first boy I ever had a crush on was in church. He was nerdy, wore glasses, had pimples and was awfully smart. One day he tapped my shoulder from behind apparently to catch my attention and electricity went through my body. I was 12 at the time and I’m still not sure if it was the anointing, butterflies or jazz! πŸ˜‰

4) I don’t know my right hand from my left. I have a little birth mark on my right hand that I look at every time I need directions and I’ve learnt to do that at lightening speed! Don’t laugh, I heard only geniuses have that problem. Seems I’m using both halves of my brain equally! πŸ˜‰

5) I shake my leg and it’s contagious. Sometimes I do it in my sleep and I have 8 different types of shakes and the best of boyfriends have given up after trying to decipher my secret code. I shake my leg when I’m sleepy, bored, angry, horny, restless, excited, nervous or praying! I’m shaking it right now… πŸ™‚

6) I’m a helpless romantic and water full my eye! I really get into a movie, so into it that where others say ‘awwwww, sad’ I cry buckets! Even cried when I watched ‘Lion King!’ I’m also jumpy, couldn’t find my purse after ‘Snakes on a plane’ cos I’d flung it in fright at some point. Nevertheless, I love horror!

7) I pray before I do anything, even before going clubbing… #shameonme! I’m no better than those criminals who pray before robbing…geez! But He is faithful and I’ve never been robbed, mugged, kidnapped, in an accident, drugged etc though my guardian angels did advice I slow my role so I’ve become more indoorsy of late! πŸ˜‰

8 ) I cried the first time I entered the anatomy lab and saw all those dead bodies. I wasn’t scared or disgusted, I was just sad that I had to cut them up to achieve my dream. They had dreams too… #sentimental

9) I used to be deadly afraid of dogs till I moved to Abuja. Now I live with Nikky, Buddy, Jack and Nikky’s 5 pups. Alsatians and a Bullmastiff. Now i could almost write a book about dogs…

10) I’m afraid of heights, and that also includes being carried so no sweeping me off my feet please. Thank God carrying your wife across the threshold no be by force!

11) When I was in the university, I was superstitious about sandals and slippers. Every time I did something wrong or felt guilty about something, the strap of my shoe cut, no matter how new it was or how strong it looked and I had to do the walk of shame to the nearest shoe-maker…

12) I love my friends and family but I’m terrible at keeping in touch…and would rather send an sms than call… 😦

13) I thought Beast was the sexiest X-Men character! And would have totally married Rock in fantastic four. Something about soft, brainy yet brawny guys not necessarily conventionally hot…

14) At various points in my life, I have wanted to be a genetic engineer, an architect, a pilot, a sexologist, a police woman and a house wife…

15) I was an ugly duckling till the end of secondary school, I have almost no pics left for public viewing of me between age 9 and 16! Any man who fancied me then, knew the meaning of true love or was enthralled with the boobs on the skinny black girl!

16) The first time I was ever on TV was a children’s program on NTA channel 10. I was in JS2 then and my mates teased the hell out of me and my green aunty-give-me-cake-dress!

17) I’ve made grown men cry and grown men have made me cry!

18) I believe in love and would never marry a man for his money. Unfortunately it has been a while since a millionaire tested that theory! πŸ˜‰

19) I love children and I wanna be a pediatrician but after failing primaries, I am thinking I’ll just give birth to loads of ’em or open an orphanage instead! Now considering other disciplines of medicine…

20) I love sexy lingerie….

21) I wanna change the world…and I wanna go to heaven…both are not easy tasks!

22) I would like to get married next year and have a kid before December 2012 just in case the world does end on that day!!!

23) I got duped by a conman for the first time in history. 65k waka just like that! And I always thought I had waffi sense! So much for Isoko wayo…. 😦

24) I spend more time on my blackberry than any other activity. My not so secret sin…

25) My favorite part of my blog is the site stats…seeing the number of people that visited my blog everyday gives me a daily dose of self-achievement…love you guys!

26) Of the seven deadly sins, if I was gonna be judged on one, it would probably be lust… 😦

27) I’m easily satisfied and have been called low maintenance by every single guy who I’ve ever been remotely involved with, i’m starting to think it isn’t such a compliment anymore. Need to develop a love of money and a hunger for the finer things of life… πŸ˜‰

I will end this blog with excerpts from http://tlc.howstuffworks.com/family/september-5-birthday-astrology.htmΒ I am allowed to be self-absorbed since this post is dedicated to me and the author had such lovely things to say about the September 5 breed. πŸ˜‰

“Because of their attitude and appearance, VirgosΒ born on September 5 stand out in a crowd. Intelligent and composed, they are usually in control of their emotions. They’re not just physically attractive but also are composed and dignified.

Relationships are the essence of life for September 5 people, and they spend their life working to make them the best they can be. They have a talent for making marriageΒ work and are responsible and affectionate. They are loyal and expect the same.

They are often highly educated, yet many make their livings in nonacademic jobs. They work hard to achieve financial security.Β September 5 natives are often satisfied after attaining even modest goals. They balance professional goals with their personal lives without losing sight of either.

Don’t hate, appreciate…we are far from perfect but we will take over the world…if you ain’t born on September 5, ask God why???? Have a lovely night peeps… xoxoxo πŸ˜‰

 
16 Comments

Posted by on September 7, 2011 in Hall of Fame, Memoirs

 

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B-E-N-I-N

Β  I recently took a refreshing mini-holiday. I had been craving some excitement and some TLC so I packed my little bag and I was on the next Arik flight, destination: Benin city! I had never been to Benin by air and never flown with Arik so I knew there was an adventure lurking somewhere. As I boarded the plane, a very hot flight attendant ushered me in and he was the first thing I actually took notice of as I had been busy with my phone from the moment I checked in. And as if I’d been given the forbidden fruit, my eyes were opened and I looked around, seeing the other passengers for the first time and I was transported back to the time when the hunks on the covers of the Mills and Boons I read, ruled my world. It was like someone had cloned a whole plane of Tyson Beckfords and left me in there, I found my sit, took a deep breath and brought out a book to read. I always read on the plane cos if I’m not reading then I’m sleeping and falling asleep on the plane usually makes me wake up slightly deaf because of the pressure. The title of my book was ‘Act like a lady, think like a man’ by Steve Harvey and Lord knows, I definitely didn’t need to be thinking like a woman on that plane or my thoughts would have run amok! Kudos to Arik for getting me to Benin on time though the pilot did announce that the price for punctuality was that we would only be served water as the snack people hadn’t arrived by the time the plane was taking off. A woman beside me had groaned at the news, obviously she’d have preferred to have her flight delayed for an hour or two than be denied the pleasures of an almost tasteless bread-roll and a plastic cup of juice. I on the other hand couldn’t wait to get off the plane regardless of the eye-candy cos I was gonna be seeing a certain someone… πŸ˜‰

One of the places I visited was Asotime groove. It’s Benin’s version of Abuja’s Blakes resort but with much more humor. I’d like to announce to you that Michael Jackson didn’t die, he only relocated to Benin where he now wears a green shiny shirt, obviously his favorite and was given another shot at dark skin. I might be wrong but the guy doing the moonwalk must have done some jazz after MJ died, like a transference of skill. Wizkid was in the building too or his twin maybe and the guy was dancing and miming like he was the real deal. I was ecstatic as I have of recent developed a great love for that under-aged boy and I danced and sang along to my heart’s content, maybe under the influence but I’d deny that in court… πŸ™‚

While we are on the subject of alcohol, I couldn’t help noticing the customer service at a certain joint we visited. A guy called ‘Humphrey’ (don’t laugh) was our waiter for the night and he kept repeating his name like he was afraid we’d tip someone else when it was time to pay and while watching a football match, my eyes strayed to the big signboard on one of the walls of the bar. ‘IF YOU ARE NOT SATISFIED WITH OUR SERVICES, PLEASE CALL 080….’ There were three numbers and I was absolutely tripped. In Lagos, the only signboard you’d see in a joint like that would be ‘NO CREDIT TODAY, TRY AGAIN TOMORROW’ or more to the point, ‘WE DON’T SELL ON CREDIT AND GOODS OPENED CANNOT BE RETURNED!’ Benin I hail you oh! I wonder if they’d give you your money back if you complained. πŸ™‚

I couldn’t help noticing how fashion conscious everybody was. The boys had obviously never gotten past the 50cents or Ja Rule fad and wore chains on their necks that looked so heavy it made me wonder if slavery hadn’t been abolished in Benin. The bling blings matched their ‘Get rich or die trying’ attitude and their women weren’t left out. I honestly believe Bini girls are the best dressed girls in Nigeria. They don’t believe less is more and could give Miss Pepeye a run for her money yet they still look fabulous in a way all their own. Even the woman that sold me cow leg in the market was decked up! From false eyelashes and ?brazilian hair to clothes, shoes and jewelry all in bright yellow and long curvy fingernails to match. The way she worked that meat with her nails made me wonder…

On my last night in the town, I stopped by a supermarket and while I was there a man walked in looking like a cross between a drunk homeless person and Bob Marley re-incarnated and in a strong American accent, asked the alarmed shopkeeper if she sold rizlas. He sounded like he was asking for close-up toothpaste and I could hardly control my laughter. Guess everything the Bini people do is with flair and aplomb. πŸ™‚

At last it was time to say goodbye but only for a while. I had cooked snail for the first time in this city, along with my famous edikainkong and explored one of the oldest cities in Africa and I couldn’t wait to do it again. Shout out to baby boy who made the trip a fantastic one. Abuja looks slightly less colorful now…

Off to bed folks, thoughts of wizkid on my mind…purely innocent! Loving track 06….have a great night peeps…xoxoxo πŸ˜‰

 
9 Comments

Posted by on August 20, 2011 in Memoirs

 

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A-B-U-J-A

Β  Β I’ve been moping around for a bit, trying to live the sedentary lifestyle mature people are famous for. I gave the excuse that I needed to crawl into a hole and regenerate the parts missing when my heart crash-landed some months ago. I had a foolproof routine. Work-Gym-Home, on other days it was Work-Cinema-Yahuza’s suya which is an absolute delight and makes all the Lagos suya I chopped so happily, taste like rice scraped from the bottom of the pot- and then home. I was fine till my friend announced I was a time-bomb waiting to explode. Now anyone who has been following the news lately or who has seen it first-hand in Abuja realises that bombs are no longer just 5-letter words that go BOOM on your TV screen. In the past weeks, I have had to call family twice to check if they were okay and then there were speculations about the bombing at the police headquarters being a suicide bombing. Nigerians are NOT suicide bombers, period! We may be a lot of things but fools we are not. 70 virgins? When we get to heaven, we’ll bargain for 5. Money for our families? What’s the guarantee you won’t screw us over after we are 6 feet under? Abeg! That was no suicide bombing…here’s how I see it. Mr X’s job was simple. Drive the car into the police headquarters, park it somewhere not too close to people and then run for dear life while the timer counted down to the explosion. Now what went wrong, you ask? First of all, there was traffic, which is becoming a fairly common occurrence in Abuja. Abuja please, please don’t become Lagos! Secondly the guard at the gate wasted time asking him “Anything for your boys”, when the timer had started counting and he had to fish in his pocket for some change. Thirdly, there was a man in front of him with total disregard for traffic laws, who refused to just park but blocked the road to the car park while hailing his bros at the police headquarters. And our dear Mr X, who was already breaking in a sweat, finally found somewhere to park, only to realise the door of the car didn’t open from inside. His superiors weren’t about to waste a perfectly good car when he could drive a decent-from-the-outside cabu-cabu to its early grave. By the time he realised the door had to be opened from outside and finally fished for the winder since the automatic windows chose that moment to prove the car electrician was high on kasapreko the day he fixed the car, time had run out for bros…”May the soul of the officer he took with him, rest in perfect peace!” Nigerians let’s make love not war. Okay not too much love, we can barely feed Β the babies popping up everywhere. So back to my friend calling me an event waiting to happen…I didn’t think I was strung out, infact I thought I was doing quite great. Yes it’d been ages since I danced to Fimile by Kas in front of the mirror and been even longer since I sweated to the beat of Kabba Kabba but I’d hummed Port Harcourt boy all day, a couple of days before so what was all this talk. He convinced me that I needed to live a little and let out some steam so armed with my close friend F (miss you babe), we decided to hit the town.

Our waka like I like to call it, started at Ketchup an open bar restaurant in Wuse 2. Anyone who knows the capital city, knows that there are more joints in Wuse 2 than anywhere else in Abuja. I am led to believe that’s where the first set of Ibo boys from Aba came to set up camp! The DJ was doing it right with blasts from the past. Anyone who knows me well, knows that music from way back is like adrenaline in my veins. We went from ‘Return of the Mac’ to ‘Ladies Night’ to ‘Make it rain’ and when he started with the Nigerian hits that got us all groovy way back in secondary school, he had me by the balls! (oops I need to grow a pair!), We moved to Soho, our entourage growing to a party of 6 and my first impression of Soho was that it was a white man club. There weren’t enough Nigerians in sight and the music made me think of a quiet evening at Piccolomondo. #dead! We stayed a few minutes and headed for Play. Play was hot. The DJ was on point and I danced like there was no tomorrow. It got a bit weird when I got asked to dance by two of the girls who’d been sitting beside me in the VIP section. Now since they obviously weren’t hos and my date had this big goofy grin on his face probably dreaming up a menage a trois, I put the worrisome debates on their sexuality behind me and danced heartily till my shoes called for a timeout. It was a great night and the fact that I had a job interview the next morning at a private hospital made it one to remember. I barely made it to the hospital, makeup concealing my lack of sleep, my mind willfully conjuring medical scenarios and tryna switch from fun mode to save-a-soul mode. Once I saw the other doctors in their over-sized suits, poring through last-minute medical handbooks, I sighed…I should’ve just stayed at home cos the other candidates also looked bereft of sleep but obviously for a reason entirely different from mine. So I kissed my locum job goodbye. Thank God for 9-5’s!

And there began a new chapter. I was determined to explore the fun side of town. Tired of being a tourist, I decided some exposure was needed and I had so much fun. Wonderland was exhilarating, the dancers at Blakes had asses that were loosely sewn to the rest of their body as their gyration took on a life of its own. I met so many people and had so much fun that I had to catch my breath before I exploded from exhaustion! I took a keke marwa for the first time, #more emancipation, got over my fear of dogs thanks to Jack, Nicky, Buddy and Austin’s shaggy ole dog and had my share of taking proposals to the National Assembly. Anyone who lives in Abuja knows that if you haven’t hustled for a contract of some sort then you’ve been left behind and my job as a health advisor on research and projects had me going places and meeting people who I’d hitherto watched on TV, now hoping they’d be willing to share their piece of the national cake! My red skirt almost got me into trouble at the National Assembly but in my defence, the skirt wasn’t short, my legs were just long and the heels weren’t helping. Yes I’d put my moping around days behind me and was fast falling in love with the town.

There must be something in the air around here because for some reason, 90% of the men who chat me up everyday are between the ages of 22 and 25 and is it me or does that scream cougar?!! I don’t wanna be arrested lads and I don’t care if my spirit is young or if my pastor has me confessing; ‘My youth is renewed like the eagle’s’. Whatever it is, I no do! Haba! I know I’m tryna get my groove back but I ain’t Stella and if I hear age is nothing but a number one more time, I shall plank on a transformer! ;-).
And just before I say goodnight, what is this new planking trend? I have heard all sorts, everybody is claiming it. There are those who say planking is good for the abdominal muscles #teamhealthjunkies and those who plank because it’s the new fad on twitter #teamfollowfollow and those who are anti-planking #teamplankersarewankers and those who think planking is the secret language of the devil #teamplankingtohell and finally those who are eagerly waiting for planking to become a new term for sex…according to my friend Jay, “Two planks,nailed and nailing together. Hard Wood connecting em as they lying together/hammering/screwing as they tighten together…bond so strong can withstand any weather!…let it rain!” #futuristicplanking. Shout out to my friend Jay Vox! πŸ˜‰ It’s a wonder how sex begins all and ends all. We humans, creative as we are really do have a one-track mind.

As I get ready for bed. I ask you to consider where your mind’s been lately…the mind is really the devil’s workshop, tell him his rent is due and kick him out! And if you haven’t voted please go to http://www.nigerianblogawards.com/vote.php to vote for Memoirs of a woman with Chutzpah! Love you guys…you make blogging worthwhile. Have a great night peeps…xoxoxo πŸ˜‰

 
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Posted by on July 4, 2011 in Hall of Fame, Memoirs

 

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A tale of two cities

Β  I’ve always loved Abuja. It has all the things I love about Lagos and less of the things I hate.
We’d always flirted around, our trysts lasting for three to five days at a time. Wild exciting nights in the capital city. My lover enticed me with her clubs, fish joints and quiet swagger and then we saw each other more as our affair blossomed, I began to memorize her roads, sight landmarks and be welcomed into the inner caucus. I was out to explore.

She dazzled me with a new lifestyle and begged me to change my perception and get a new orientation. I saw things that made me marvel. Point and kill rabbits in a garden-resort where preserving greenlife was their hallmark. The rabbits tried and found guilty of decades of grass-nibbling awaited their execution. I felt a wave of nausea as I looked at the innocent eyes of the rabbits their fates already sealed. The polo clad cannibals were justified in their protection of the grass as their own contribution towards preventing total annihilation from the depleting ozone layer and if along the way a delicious meal was thrown in, who were they to refuse.

I was amazed that instead of being sold gala and bottled coke in the well-ordered traffic, I was offered gold rings and other form of jewellry by non-Hausa, street hawkers. Our own l’il Las Vegas. ‘Madam make oga buy you this nice gold ring, I go put in one chain for you. Church dey for the next junction!’ I laughed all the way to the airport! Marriage made easy 101. Guys you are fast running out of excuses! πŸ˜‰

The airport sadly is something I’ll greatly miss my trusty lover Lagos for. MM2 thanks to Wale Babalakin is all the things the Abuja airport is not. As I waited for my flight on a supposed queue being jostled by disgruntled passengers, I got serenaded by touts left, right and center and avoided eye-contact as every person who caught my eye unceremoniously demanded a tip. I switched to Oshodi mode and got it over and done with quickly enough. It was a tryst through and through, ridden with exciting tales to tell.

While sowing my wild oats, an old flame called.
Benin was one of those lovers that called you up once in a while and it was like not a day had gone by since the last time you were together. The place remained the same. I decided to go by road and Edegbe lines was the logical choice being an old faithful. It was an executive fully air-conditioned bus and the passengers were mostly students. The trip was a jolly one with fast-flowing Bini conversations blocking out the hi-life music in the background. All was well till a passenger, Mr X decided to cause chaos by farting in the enclosed air-tight bus. Now if there was any other ethnic group packed in the bus, we may have been able to downplay and possibly ignore the eroding of our nasal linings and inherent asphyxiation but not the Bini people. They cursed and squirmed and covered their noses with anything from a handky to nylon bags. They cursed his diet, his ass, his lack of bus etiquettes and his ‘shamelessness’ in fluent pidgin and then a good Samaritan thought it most helpful to spray a generous amount of perfume Y into the air-tight confines which had us all coughing and wheezing with the acrid mix of eau de fart! At Ore when we stopped to eat, the passengers warned the unknown offender to locate a toilet and not to buy any eggs or beans. Outspoken and audacious, these people were only concerned about breathing in at least 20% pure oxygen given the circumstances. The rest of the trip was uneventful. Benin embraced me, toasted me with freshly plucked chickens and banga soup. It tempted me away from the hustle and bustle of Las gidi to a more rustic lifestyle without letting go of the vibrancy of city life. I felt the sting of a soldier ants and the bite of sand-flies anew. Pidgin english was the acceptable lingo with a lilt that was entirely theirs. But an old flame is an old flame and soon our time was up. My heart longed for Lagos and away I went.

The dude loading the travelling bags on the bus threatened to mark my face and treat my f**k up cos I refused to tip him after being over-charged for my trip. He hadn’t treated it there and then because several passengers had within earshot warned me to ignore him. I laughed, little did he know that Benin was just a classic case of ‘Okafor’s law’. We’d been lovers once, years ago when I was a kid and my dad made me spend a greater part of my summer holidays in Benin with my dear uncle and an opportunity had arisen to renew the warmth of this old flame but that being done, it was time to let bygones be bygones. I had gotten closure. He could do me no harm even if he tried though I did hope I didn’t have a look-alike in Benin.

As I returned to Lagos, I felt the familiar stirring of my heart as I looked upon my home but something was amiss. Abuja had made an offer I couldn’t refuse. She wanted to be more than friends with benefits. She had me sprung with a hint of a future I’d only imagined. So I kissed Lagos goodbye and hopped on a plane with a one-way ticket to the arms of a casual lover offering a more meaningful relationship.

My welcome party started at Cubana with Tuface Idibia in the house. It was an after-wedding party and a wonderful way to baptize me into the Abuja crowd.
I was armed with all of my Lagos swagger and was secretly impressed at how calm people were. In Lagos, if a celeb hit an excusive club, at least one ‘bros’ could be bet on to go over-board and need restraint from the unsmiling bodyguards but not here. Tuface hugged and shook everyone in a genial manner, ordered Moet on the house and settled down on the couch opposite me, grinning from ear to ear. The DJ too was on-point. Instead of indulging in hero-worship and putting away his mix-tapes to play Tuface’s latest album back to back, he played some fat oldies which got everyone dancing to a fevered pitch. I couldn’t understand why some of the girls with their over-priced brazilian hair would wear slippers akin to flip-flops to club, I reckoned they must be Brazilian too. πŸ™‚

Today I’m off to Kaduna with a health guru, an entrepeneur and an international strategist to look at a site for a world-class facility and I smile to myself…Life has only begun and Abuja has stolen my heart!

Have a great sunday people…xoxo

 
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Posted by on March 6, 2011 in Hall of Fame, Memoirs

 

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Life&Times of a Lasgidi Job seeker!

Β  Ok so yesterday I was a corper and today I’m unemployed and sitting in the reception of a clinic on a street in Onikan waiting for my first interview. I’m in a waist coat and pencil skirt with a big handbag carrying my credentials and I can’t help but smile when I remember the days when job seekers would carry clear bags up and down.
The receptionist is nice though her shrill, bird-like voice and constant chatter doesn’t match my mood. I keep worrying if they are gonna ask me some very hard questions at the interview and from time to time I open my medical text book wondering what on earth I could possibly read in 20 minutes.
It’s finally time for the interview and all’s well till I’m asked what my salary expectations are. My mind goes to the cab guy I had to pay two thousand naira for cab fare and I start to do a mental calculation. Lagos is expensive, I’d make an Akure cab man’s week if I gave him two thousand for one trip. Anyway I give ’em a figure and the look on their faces seems to say I should have asked for more. Oh well, was playing it safe. But truth is, I heard that’s what they pay their medical officers anyway! Then I’m asked what I’d do if I was on call on a sunday morning and there was no water for the patients to take their baths. I attack the question Lasgidi style. ‘Madam first I go assure the patients that the matter dey under control, then I go call security make them get aboki way go fetch water, after that I go pay oh but on monday you go refund my money complete’ πŸ˜‰
Lol! You know yours truly was at an interview so translate that into butty, Queen’s english and there you have it! The women laughed and then one of ’em said ‘Just call management.’
Now unless management is not ‘Naija-oriented,’ I’ll still be left with the only practical solution which is what I gave ’em. Then they asked me to stand up so they could assess my dressing. Thank God my mama had done that at home. Shirt on point, waist coat on point, skirt way below my knees and not too tight and medium-heeled shoes to match.
They said they’d call and I left just as the second candidate, my friend ‘R’ went in for hers.

After that our waka really began. There was a clinic in Obalende that we wanted to drop our CV’s at and the man we asked for directions assured us that we could walk from Onikan to Obalende, we walked first to an eatery to get some food since it was well past noon and we were at risk of succumbing to the combo of hot sun, high heels and hunger pangs. After that, we walked all the way to the clinic my pencil skirt did not permit okada-hopping and I learned that when going job-hunting in Lagos, trousers are best. We got there tired and breathless and still had to climb up four flights of stairs to drop the CV.
From there we took a cab to V.I to drop one more CV and my friend met up with a blind date.
Mr BD had a lot of attitude and no swag whatsoever in his puny frame and my friend called her matchmaker to give her a piece of her mind!
It cracked me up when she said; ‘How you go give me man way as we dey waka, I go run go front make people no know say we dey together!!! Biko oh’
And it got me thinking, in this day and age, blackberries and social networks have really given blind dates a pair of glasses. The guy obviously preferred a surprise attack!

We hung out at Ice cream factory and I was transported to a land of orgasmic flavors and sinful desserts. It didn’t hurt that the service boys were extremely pleasant and as my friend put it, as good on the eyes as the menu.
We ordered, we laughed, we ate, we had fun and I could’ve sworn it was the Lagos version of ‘Sex and the city’. Three women having a great time and some much-deserved rest after an afternoon of job hunting.
The waiter kept coming to our table to ask us if we needed anything else and my friend noticed his fly was open, we had a good laugh about that after he left. Maybe he was selling something else…
The ice cream was on point and just as I was wondering if it could get any better, eye-candies rolled in. Shout out to Lagos for having some of the hottest guys this side of the Sahara. We giggled and IM’d about ’em and of course the guys had this look on their face of ‘I totally know you girls are checking us out’. Please what happened to guys who in the good ole days were unaware of their obvious hotness? Lagos ti baje.
Didn’t realise I’d missed Lasgidi so much. Too bad my heart’s in another town but abuja holds a lot of promise….I can sense it!

I happened to glance at the time and I exclaimed. I’d totally forgotten that it was a friday and we had chilled till rush hour which was not part of the plan. Blame it on too much enjoyment. I called my trusty but pricey cab man and he said he’d be there in an hour. The girls and I were so engrossed in our discussion that the time flew by and the cab guy was outside waiting. We got in and as we joined the insane traffic I sighed…
Two hours later, still crawling in traffic with our bbs off and our moods borderline irritable, our cab guy had a brainwave and turned off the road. We drove for 5 minutes traffic free only to find ourselves in a traffic worse than the first. Lagos na wa! Going from the island to the mainland on a weekday evening is a hellish experience. L’il wonder most people prefer to chill on the island till the traffic thins out. Since I had a curfew and was wearing clothes I considered stuffy, battling traffic was the only option I allowed myself. I got home at past 9 after driving through inner city markets and unfamiliar roads, handbag and phones tucked securely between our legs on the floor of the cab.
My first day post NYSC and Lagos had already sucked me in and then sucked me dry. I was exhausted and my wallet was depressingly lighter. Spent 6k in one day and from what I heard I didn’t do too badly. I wondered how Lagosians coped with their meagre salaries and maximum expenses?
In Akure, life was so easy and cheap. I’m sure their life expectancy there must surely be higher but what is life if you don’t live it to the fullest right? πŸ˜‰

Off to Abuja today for a week. Let’s see what the capital city has to offer. Holla at your girl….have a great day folks…xoxo πŸ˜‰

 
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Posted by on February 12, 2011 in Memoirs

 

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