Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Book meets girl

I wear my love for books around my neck like japa malas bead
Books with their fibrous scent and the possibilities of nameless pleasures


Books open up for me a level of intimacy I sometimes don't get; books have become a world I lose myself in when I feel lost in the one I am in

Monday, 20 October 2014

I walked...

I went to read 'Kunle's FB notes again and for some reason I enjoyed reading this one in particular so I decided to post it here... I hope you enjoy it too

Yesterday I walked. I took a long walk. A walk not planned but achieved. 

“So, when did walking become such a big thing”? I hear you asking. Anyways you might not know but in my ever so funny country “taking a walk” is a preserve of the elite. It is a thing of pride simply because you will only walk when you don’t have to bother about power, traffic, robbery and other silly things that make us live in the fear of living itself. How do you walk when there are no parks, walkways and time is ever so effervescent because we spend too much of it on mundane things.

Anyways, at the close of business yesterday - after the usual long day of a young upwardly mobile working class dude in Lagos of Nigeria - for the same old irrepressible reasons there was heavy traffic. At the gate of my office complex it was a logjam. It was simply nauseating. How else will you feel? Facing this nightmare again at 7:45pm after putting in 12 hours of your life for your daily bread.

Then it occurred to me that I could escape…at least for a day. I stepped out of the car. “The car” is the name you give your car when it is becoming old or out of date. It is no longer “my car” for obvious reasons. I left everything, everything except my comb and phones. Note the phones. Today, our phones are the reasons why we live and not the other way round. The more you have, the longer you live or is it vice versa, and my comb has suddenly become very important since I decided to have a feel of a bigger cover on my head.

With nothing to bother about I walked home. I walked over three kilometres from office to my home. No music. No company. No hassles. I just walked.

I love to walk. I have walked before. I have walked several times….sometimes out of lack or need. I have not walked in over 36 months; I have not walked since I started this race up the corporate ladder. Walking helps me to think. It helps me to reflect. It opens me up for new ideas. However, I must confess that I didn’t set out with the mind to walk all the way home. I only wanted to get to the nearest bus stop or get a bike. No bike or bus and then the next bus stop and then the next. At the 3rd bus stop, I found one but I had changed my mind. I wanted to walk. In fact there was no traffic from the 3rd bus stop till I got home. That is Lagos for you.

Yesterday’s walk was unique because it helped me to see things in a different way. I appreciated life and living a little more. I saw my city as a part of my life a little more. I felt the pain of others a little more. I saw the need to make things work a little more. I also knew that things are not so bad a little more. I saw Fashola’s work a little more and why we need a little more. Above all it is helping me tell a story a little more.

Whilst walking I saw blocked drains and also saw debris flying out of cars without caution. I saw callous drivers and at least 6 incidents of “bumper to bumper” car crashes. I saw many bikes meandering and manoeuvring between vehicles at their own peril. I saw potholes, craters and boulders on our roads and I realised what led to my walk. Yet I saw lovebirds – arms hanging around necks and chatting away without bothering about the world around them. I saw kids playing away happily, I saw many people eating by the roadside. 

Happy people! For them….Life may not be fair but they are faring through.

What do you love doing? Eating? Eating the way you like it…maybe with your hands. Sleeping? Sleep the way you like…maybe on the floor/mat sometimes. Walking, eating, writing, drinking? Do it the way you love to do it. You will be surprised at the joy that comes with the anonymity. 

I am back in the office, ready to face today. There will be traffic again. Will I be walking? Yes…in my mind.

Friday, 17 October 2014

The lone tear

Men shouldn't cry they say
Crying is a sign of weakness they retorted
We were socialised that way,I mean...

So when I saw the lone tear drop from your left eye
I knew you finally have let go
I discerned you are done hiding your vulnerabilities

My work is done here I say...my work is done here


Thursday, 16 October 2014

"What do you do with shattered dreams?”

We all have dreams, big dreams and small dreams
Of course we all have expectations, reasonable or not
We all have a mental image of where we want our lives to be
At one point or the other we have had our lives planned out…the impeccable car, the flawless job, the perfect marriage etc.

…somehow all you dreamt didn’t happen, the exact opposite did

You were diagnosed with cancer at 19
You got fired at the zenith of your career
At 39 you are by yourself and miserable
The baby you’ve been all chummy about, was a still birth
The doctor said you can’t father a child
You are stuck in a job you don’t like because you need the money

…or maybe your situation is/was much worse than this

You are frustrated, tired and broken and honestly it feels like all the other people… your friends, siblings, colleagues are all achieving their dreams. Their lives seem just perfect!
People younger than you are getting married and you have to buy “aso-ebi” because they all call you auntie … and that in their dictionary means you should “shake body”.
People are having kids, even the very poor ones that can’t take care of them.
Everyone is healthy, happy in their marriage, getting good raises at work…

Does this sound familiar?

You've asked questions like "What do I do with shattered dreams?” “How do I handle unmet hopes? How does one move on when life takes an unexpected turn?

Do I have answer? No…All I know is GOD KNOWS; whether I’m happy or sad. He knows!

There will always be moments in life when we feel everything is slipping and we’ll be tempted to turn our back on God. Don't!

See ehn, no matter how it seems. God is with you still and things will turn around. May be not the way you planned it, may be not the way you imagined it
but you’ll see God’s hands at work- if not in your situation, then certainly in your heart…