Friday, 26 September 2014

Tragedies Of A 'Trekker'

           So today, I woke up quite late 'cause I wasn't supposed to go to work. I knew that. So I watched a movie series late into the night. When I woke up, somehow I had some feelings that I needed to go to work. My colleague and I took turns at work and today wasn't my call, so I felt I deserved some rest. So I prayed, studied my Bible and slept off again. I was awoken by the popular Nokia ring tone. It was my colleague calling. I already knew what she was going to say. 'Are you free? I can't make it to the clinic. Could you cover for me if you're free?' I agreed and not reluctantly. I liked the fact that the clinic afforded me time and a good environment to read, though I didn't like having to bear the complaints of many patients on some of my unlucky busy days. I looked at the time and it was 9:30am. I hadn't even taken my bath. So I rushed into the bathroom and out, dressed up, had my regular breakfast (bread and tea), sprayed the room with some insecticide and I was off to work. 

           It had rained heavily earlier and the roads were flooded. I waited for a tricycle to take me to the bus stop where I'd board a bus to my work place. It wasn't long I found one. I reached the bus stop and entered the bus. I was still settling in before I received a baptism of flood water, right inside the bus. 'How the hell did that happen?', I think I thought. I saw a bus run off ahead and I understood what happened. Our bus door was open and the other bus in top speed splashed water as it overtook ours. I was at the extreme, so I alongside with the conductor received the early morning baptism. It wasn't funny, but I was able to contain my annoyance. Thank God. However, the woman by my side, who only had some showers, didn't stop cursing. She was speaking in Yoruba so I couldn't understand what she was saying, but it seemed she was accusing our driver and the conductor for leaving the door open. 
          
            You know, if it were before, I'd be like 'O God, you see why I need a car'. But now, it doesn't bother me. I've learnt that life is in stages and I should make the most of every stage. So I simply stepped out of the bus and walked to my workplace and in no time, my dress was dry. The rest of the day was uneventful.

©Radiant~ 22nd September 2014

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Thursday, 18 September 2014

Another's View Of 6th September


Today, I'll be hosting an ace writer who happens to be one of my mentions in the previous post. This is a personal letter but I feel it's too interesting to enjoy it alone. So with his consent, I share it with you. He wrote:

          'It has been over a year since I sat down to write anything like this. This is because I write mostly when I'm inspired. I get inspired by experiences, life issues, people or most times, how I feel. One could think me to be a writer when I say “I write”, but I see myself more as a scribbler and this is not because it also sounds like my name (he laughs). I decided to write this because something happened to me over the past weekend. I’ll try to be short as much as I can.
           I had a very busy week at work that also took a lot into the weekend. My Saturday morning was filled with chores, errands and activities that got me tired even before it was noon. I got myself so engaged that I had to call it a day before 3pm, so I decided to ease out stress by hanging out that evening. I made my way to Bode Thomas Street in Surulere where I usually have lunch at the Sweet Sensation CafĂ©, then crossed over to the Leisure mall to see a movie. After the movie, I made my way out of the mall, but with my mind on my little toy (called cell phones). I was reaching out to a number of missed calls and messages, that came through while my phone was in Silent mode, inside the cinema. They say we gravitate to people with like interests and attractions but my case was of the former not the latter. 

           A group of four ladies were walking ahead of me, and as we made it to the exit foyer, they stopped to take some pictures. That was when I noticed one of them. She wore a blue blouse, a pair of black jeans and some good looking pair of sandals that made her lovely feet glitter. I'm saying this, just to express how I perceived what got my attention. I decided to speak to her after the snapshots but I got distracted once again by a text message from a colleague of mine. When I looked up and away from my phone, I realised that the ladies had already gone down the stairs and heading for the gates. I trotted down the stairs, caught up with them at the gate and asked to speak with her. She was snobby at first, which is a major turn off for me (no mature and exposed person should act that way, you know). It’s just uncontrollable pride for me. Well, I just probed a little longer because I believe in second chances and also did not want to make assumptions. She did what plenty ladies would do (keep you waiting for a while), but in the end, gave me her Facebook ID to contact her (even though I just wanted to make her an acquaintance and maybe, chat with her one on one before heading home). I got turned off again when after giving me her Facebook ID, she said she always accepts all friend requests sent to her. This meant that she was likely to have an uncontrollable number of friends, and here was I thinking that I had met a lady with high standards like yours truly. No offence here, and with no sense of pride. Did I mention that I draw lines for a living? Yes, you got me right, I'm an Architect. I get paid to pay attention to details. Let me not bore you with the details but just the summary. I took the Facebook ID and we parted ways.
            I got home that night and checked her out on Facebook. I also sent her a friend request and a message. I still wanted to sit and chat with her but not over the internet. I could do more on phone calls rather than chat on a social network. My busy schedule does not allow me long periods of typing text over the internet. She did accept my friend request three days later, but has not replied my message up till now (and who in the world still does that?). I think this is because she has over 4000 friends on Facebook (FRIENDS- Not fans? Are you D.Banj?). We usually have less friends and a lot more acquaintances, fans or admirers, but her case was different. I got this manuscript ready a day after she accepted my friend request, but I could not just find time to type this up (please understand how difficult it is for me).
             My aim of writing this now is to appreciate the lady that inspired me to scribble again after this long while. One lady who made me check the meaning of the word ‘Radiant’, like I never knew the meaning before. She is a writer, singer and trained medical doctor. A lady who I strongly feel radiates vigour, brilliance, humour, intellect and content (and did I mention that she is very fair in complexion?). I won’t call her beautiful, but I am sure she is pretty. I am not as good a writer as Chimamanda Adichie (who I grew up with), Linda Ikeji, and Ibe Chidiogo Radiant who inspired this. I never received any formal training in writing though I have a collection of songs and poems I think are good. Please pardon my punctuations also, I just wanted to type and send you this ASAP. You never really know someone until you relate, communicate and understand their person, before you can have genuine opinions about them. If I did not check her profile and blog online, maybe my perception about her would have gone left and never right (you know what I mean). Funny, she said I was a “Chyker” in her blog, I guess she never knew I would take much of her time by making her read this (if she ever gets to check her message from the 4040th friend- he laughs).
             Chidiogo, if you ever reply this, just know that I still want to sit and chat with you for I believe it’s the most effective means of communication. I could wait a while for you to reply, hoping sooner than later, for I know that we are friends on Facebook, does not really mean that we are friends. I do not have people on my account that I do not relate with. You can be the first person to prove me wrong by having a thousand plus friends and still know something about them all.

Cheers,
Be Good, Be Strong…'

An interesting one, right? He prefers to remain anonymous.

©Radiant~September 2014

Sunday, 7 September 2014

6th September 2014

             It started quite well with me doing Saturday home chores- washing the toilet and doing some laundry, while listening to a sermon. I had three slices of bread and a cup of milk for breakfast. Then I dressed up in a smart blue top and a pair of black jeans, made sure my hair was in proper alignment, packed my bag ( you know, transfer some things from one bag to the other), then scurried out of the house 'cause I was already thirty minutes late for the Tax Seminar organized by my church. 

            As I walked into the church, I was greeted by a greeter and an usher ushered me to where I was going to sit. I suddenly realized I was quite a distraction because the metal fancies on my sandals jingled as I walked. So I tiptoed, trying to stop them, but to no avail. I finally saw that delaying my movement would only prolong the distraction, so I walked faster and took my seat. It didn't take long before I got into the message of the day. Many speakers took the stage. Though I was hearing some terms for the first time and because I didn't own any business, it was quite enormous to contain, the seminar was really helpful. I'm thankful for the education and I know I'm better equipped for the future. My drama workshop was scheduled to hold at 12 noon, but the seminar had run into that time, so I waited an extra thirty minutes before I left. While in the tricycle, popularly known as 'Maruwa', I contemplated my going for the workshop ('To go or not to go', that is the question). I decided that since I was preparing for a professional exam in October, it wasn't wise to go. So I stopped at my house and brought out my book. As I began to read a few pages, I got a call from the drama director. I felt so guilty for not even taking permission to be absent, so I told him I was coming right away. I took pictures of some pages of the text- a skill we learnt in med school to save time while in the bus, then I jumped up and scurried off again. I met the workshop just at the right time. We were taken on speech for acting by our very passionate and knowledgeable director. It was a very interesting class with some fun practical exercises.

             Then came the event that made my day- seeing Izi, Carina and Uche again after eight years. These were my secondary school mates that I hadn't seen since we left school, save Uche who I saw a month ago, for the first time in that long while. That night she recognized me and called me but it took me a few seconds to recognize her through the darkness. Today's was easier. I could see everyone's faces properly. Izi's was a give-away. She still looked like her. I could recognize her anywhere, anytime. Carina had grown bigger but still recognizable. We met at Shoprite mall, Surulere, where they had been waiting for me, hugged ourselves excitedly and decided to take pictures. I quickly excused myself to the rest room to top up my make up- nothing much, just powder, cause I'd been out since morning. When I came out, I decided to ask someone to take the pics and he said we must buy something for him. I tried talking him out of it jocularly but he was adamant so I left him. I saw another young chap who I asked and he quickly accepted and I felt like blessing his generation. So we took a few pics cause we were running late and exchanged BB pins. Then we went to Filmhouse cinema at Leisure mall, where we paid to see 'Into the Storm.

            At the counter, I brought out my NYSC ID card, hoping for a discount but was disappointed to hear the cashier say that it only worked on weekdays. That ID card had never failed me before. We bought two packs of popcorn and drinks to go with. Bouncers stopped us at the entrance to Hall 2 'cause we had Coldstone ice cream with us. So we had to plead and I implored them to consider that we even bought popcorn and drinks from them, so they allowed us in. We walked in the darkness and found our way to some seats behind. As we sat, Uche suggested we should move forward, none of us responded at first. I sat and tried to recline on the seat but noticed that if I reclined, I'd be blocked by the seats in front, so I understood what Uche meant and then we agreed to move to the front. We secured comfortable seats in front and at the centre and positioned our pop corns and drinks. I was at the extreme left followed by Carina, then Uche and Izi at the extreme right. I tried to get into the story of the movie since we were fifteen minutes late, but was surprised but happy to see that they were still showing trailers of other movies. Izi was right. She had told us that trailers would take fifteen minutes and I had disputed that because I was used to starting movies at exactly the time written-trailers would have been shown before that time. But then, that was for Ozone Cinema. 

          So the movie began. Initially I recognized that the three heads were bowed down and hands were busy with their phones. Of course, changing DPs with the recent pictures of us. But it wasn't long, the heads were glued to the screen, all hairs stood up and butts were at the tip of their seats. I was so on edge. The suspense was just too much. For that moment, I forgot it was a movie. I would say things like 'oya, run away now', 'hey, how can you risk your life, are you mad?' Don't worry. I wasn't the only one. Everyone was tensed. It was about some documentary guys who were on a project to capture tornadoes as they occurred. So you can imagine the kind of suspense in it. Well, the movie ended well, without casualties in the room. I just wondered how it would have been in 3D. We actually came with our 3D glasses but were disappointed to hear that they weren't showing any movies in 3D that day. But at last, I was thankful that we saw it in 2D cause the tension might have been traumatic. (Lol)

          Outside the cinema hall, we took another set of pictures. This time we got a lady to take the pics and she proved to be professional 'cause she snapped from different angles. We got down to the road, spent some time bargaining with a cab guy and dismissing a chyker and then we had our final greetings and dispersed- Izi to Ikeja, Carina to Surulere and Uche and I to Yaba. When I got home, I was so tired but I needed to upload my pics on Instagram and write about the day. So I laid down, brought out my tablet, wrote down some part of this account, but I didn't succeed in uploading the pics due to poor network (I've done that now). Then I began to feel some hunger pangs. I had eaten only 3 slices of bread for breakfast and potato chips for lunch, asides the popcorn at the cinema, so I was really famished. I had some stew in the fridge, so I thought about cooking rice, but it was too late to eat heavy, besides I might have slept off while waiting 'cause my eyes were down heavy. I considered a light meal- Quaker Oats. But there was no milk in the fridge and I didn't like taking it without milk. Then suddenly, I thought about cooking the oats with the stew and some carrots that I had in the fridge. Ingenious indeed. I started to it and in seven minutes I had my Jollof oat meal. I ate it quite compulsorily and sank into a deep sleep. 

And that was how my day went..... *wink

©Radiant ~September 2014

(PS: I would have loved to post pics, I actually tried, but due to technical issues with my tab and probably IT ignorance, I couldn't. So click on this to see the pics. http://instagram.com/officialradiant)