Pages

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Realization

The realization of that reality you've refused to accept, not for lack of understanding but for fear of the unknown.

Monday, 17 November 2014

SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE: A DATE WITH NDIDI O. NWUNELI (MFR)

A man with a hoe on his shoulder, cutlass in one hand and a hat to protect him from the sun, is literally the first thing that comes to mind if you grew up in Nigeria and took the compulsory Agricultural Science class. Even with a Masters degree, it took two hours of brilliance for me to realize that I was among the ignorant percentage when it comes to Agriculture. Mrs Ndidi Nwuneli (MFR) introduced us to a world of Sustainable Agriculture as she graced us with her presence and wealth of knowledge at the “Meet the leader” event organized by the Abuja Global Shapers Hub.

Ndidi is a Harvard Business School graduate with past experience as a management consultant with McKinsey & Company. She returned to Nigeria and founded FATE Foundation, LEAP Africa and NIA. Currently the Managing Partner of African Alliance for Capital Expansion (AACE), Director of AACE Foods, Co-Founder Sahel Capital. She has provided advisory services to DFID, Ford Foundation, World Bank, Oxfam, Nigerian Ministries of Education and Youth Development. She was also listed as one of Africa’s most powerful women by Forbes.

Her desire to be a part of the agricultural sector was inspired by her anger at: The level of malnutrition in the country, amount of waste of farm produce and the high rate of importation of imported food. Now that I have your attention, I will like to share some interesting facts about agriculture and its sustainability in Nigeria.

Do you know that:

1. Agriculture accounts for 60% of employment in Nigeria
2. In the rebased economy, agriculture constitutes 22% of the GDP, it was previously 40%
3. For most of our agriculture products, we produce 1/3 of yield compared to our counterparts in other parts of the world with the same amount of land.
4. Agriculture is more than just primary production (planting and harvesting). We have distribution, logistics, processing, ICT, financing, packaging and amongst many others.
5. We have 65 agricultural research institutes and 30 schools of agriculture in Nigeria
6. Nigeria is a leading producer of Cassava, Sesame seeds, Sweet potato, Cashew, Okra, Rice and Fish
7. We are the largest importer of wheat
8. We are the second largest importers of rice
9. Average Nigerian spends 73% of his earning on food: U.S 9%, Brazil 25%, China 35%, Cameroun 43%

So what are the challenges affecting Sustainable Agriculture?

Low yield
No improved seeds
Poor mechanization
Access to financing
Access to Infotech
Irrigation problems
Lack of extension workers


Most young people today do not care about Agriculture as it doesn’t appear glamorous. There is the desire to work in offices, behind computers and make money. In most cases we do not even want to know about the sector. Some people are scared about the risk involved in agriculture but there are several modalities being put in place to reduce the challenges being faced in the Agriculture industry. A good example is; FAFIN: Fund for Agricultural Financing in Nigeria

Opportunities in Agriculture

Input

Production/processing

Storage and distribution,

Livestock,

Financing

For an event which was meant to last under an hour, there were so many questions from the shapers who were interested in Sustainable agriculture. I was one of the shapers who wanted to know how newcomers in the sector can have access to financing even without having a hands-on experience or educational background in the sector. Ndidi used herself as an example stating that it is important to practice the following:

Research
Learn from volunteering, it builds your credentials
Be disciplined
Have a board with competent people
As an employer, invest in your employees
I can go on and on but I believe you already get the point of all we have discussed. I left there with a new perception of agriculture and I may just be starting my own agriculture related business.

By: Andy Madaki
For www.abujaglobalshapers.org

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Osuofia Moments - Gidi Taxis and DVDs

My office decided to send the 'village' Andy to the city of Lagos to get inspired and learn how to make money like his mates. The routine was nothing new; Aero Contractors flight for 10:45 a.m left at 12:25 p.m with the scheduled flight for 8 a.m. Who was I to complain when some lady with a Victorian hat as big as a UFO (Unidentified Flying Object) was already upset that she was missing a wedding? I guess the real anger was the fact that she wouldn't be able to show off the spaceship on her head in the next column of BellaNaija Weddings. As usual I re-dedicated my life to Christ 42 times in the air just in case...

Now in Lagos, the first task was and is getting a car to take you out of the airport at an outrageous price, especially when the place you are off to is just ten minutes away from the airport. Wise thing to do for a struggling young man with no driver to pick me up (especially as I didn't want to get anyone out of the house on a Saturday) is to stroll from Arrivals to Departures in a bid to avoid the blood sucking airport drivers and to find a normal taxi or one that just dropped a passenger. This was how I met Udeme. Udeme is a "guy man", obviously educated, well dressed and well spoken. The type of guy who would want to discuss music, women, politics and corruption with a tired passenger who wouldn't feel like slapping him. After negotiating from N6000 to N2000 for a journey that should cost N500 in any other town, we took me on a 3-floor stairway to his Israelite journey to his car.

Udeme has a white Volvo fitted with "beep beep" alarm system which he was so happy to show off. He turned the car on and put on the A/C then politely told me he had to pay for his parking ticket. My Osuofia moment begun when he gave me a tour of his car:

Udeme: Oga, you go just siddon enjoy A/C small make I pay for ticket.
Me: No wahala.
Udeme: Oga no worry I go put movie for you now, I get cinema inside this my motor o! I even get Moet but people de abuse am so I say I no go buy again (he proceeded to show me a dusty champagne glass).

We watched a DVD with a selection of Shania Twain’s music videos and we had unnecessary small chat till I reached my destination. For some reason, I was wowed at the extent to which Udeme went to satisfy his customers with his product/service and it made me see business from a different angle. I had collected his number, used him on two other occasions and suggested him to all my friends who needed taxi services. It reminded me of how time and technology has changed from the days of my father’s Volvo where you needed two hands to open the door of the car to now having DVD players in them. Or how surprised I was when I entered Chico’s car and saw a small button which was for the handbrake… I mean we still drive cars with the huge pull up hand brake gear like thing.

In summation, just last night at some very expensive hotel in Ikoyi, I was at the lobby when the lights went out and some Romanians laughed and said “Welcome to Nigeria”. As much as I was upset at the fact that they were saying the truth (even though foreigners are not allowed to say shit about our already shitty situation), It reminded me of Udeme and the extent he went to ensure great service delivery and even wow me. Why couldn't that hotel at least have an inverter or some sort of buffer system to ensure no one laughed at their services?...Anyways, gist for another day. I think as aspiring and existing entrepreneurs we have something to learn from Udeme.It is not enough for something to be beautiful or for it to work, we must always try to make our services better… Rather than wait for or blame the government. For now I’m Udeme’s official manager. Hola if you need a taxi :p

Randomly Yours,
That Andy
June 2014

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Lasgidi Diaries (of Cold showers)

Have you ever had the shower go cold on you? From nice warm water to chilled scream-like-a-girl-cold-water? Sometimes life is that cold shower. For some reason I find myself in Lagos almost every other week lately, so I've decided to chronicle the madness.

Exactly a month ago, I was in Lagos for work, on the famous third mainland bridge, going to the airport in some fancy hired taxi driving at 160mph when I heard a huge bang. My first thought: "Drive by? My political enemies have sent people to kill me!" Ok I kid... I thought,"Hmmm I'm in Lagos, so it may be a stray bullet or actual thieves trying to steal the car". Second thought: "Did we just have a flat tyre? Ah,so this is how I will stand on this bridge with them changing tyres and all the people I know in Lagos will see me stranded on the bridge... I didn't ask myself if this was how I was going to die, if the driver steps on the brakes and car flips over the bridge and into the ocean just like the family that drowned about two weeks ago.

For once, I didn't have the chance to give my life to Christ 28 times in one hour like I always do whenever I have to fly on a plane in Nigeria. It was just another instance of life switching the shower from hot to cold on me. Ever notice how when people fall down, they instinctively look around to see who saw them fall? The ease at which priority changes in the event of a mishap... I don't think I've even told anyone in my family how I would have been food for the fishes just some weeks ago if the near-accident had been fatal. Simply because I didn't want my mother to go on a one week fast when next she hears I'm travelling to Lagos for work.

Silly as it seems, I actually believe the prayers of our parents keep us from some unforeseen harm that may come our way; especially when you consider how far from God we get these days. Besides, I will find any excuse to go to Lagos just because I know I will get to eat well prepared "Asun" in the Buka' abi Mama-Put (Cafeteria) I discovered close to were I was lodged. My "cold shower moments" always have this impact on me where I revisit my life and pick one thing in my life I need to fix or do better.

Truth is, in a moment where I felt I would have died, I realized that all I kept thinking about wasn't life after death or heaven and hell, but people I've stopped talking to for senseless reasons. I realize how much I fear malice and the need to be at peace with everybody, not necessarily as friends, but in your mind. I don't know what this is about but we actually had our tyre explode while driving that day and thankfully nothing bad happened

To some people this may be nothing but it just reminded me of these three; the 'poshest' car can still get knocked off by non-mechanical or electrical faults, a perfect life or day can still get ruined by unforeseen circumstances and finally never get too comfortable with life .When you feel everything is just alright, the shower goes from warm to cold or cold to hot.

I think I should say life is like PHCN.Just when you've found the right TV show, drink by your side and food to munch on, Boom! PHCN strikes and there goes your chilled out evening. Always have a plan B or a spare tyre I guess. Always find a reason to be thankful; some people have it worse than you.

Randomly yours,
That Andy

Friday, 31 January 2014

Lost in Translation

My younger sister called me in November and after all the pleasantries and small talk, she said “Andy, I will be legal in two weeks”. Apparently, she was going to turn eighteen in two weeks and so for her and anyone approaching that age, it is a huge milestone. In an African family, 18 or 25 doesn’t really mean anything as long as you are still under your parent’s roof. Now that particular conversation with the sister made me pause because of the type of person I am; I get to analyze, over analyze and then come to whatever conclusion I choose in this little mind of mine. For goodness sake, what is “baby” being excited about being legal? Vote? Drink? Smoke? Drive? Marry? Just what? See how I deliberately skipped the part about boys? Anyway, maybe it was just a simple comment which meant nothing but I let my mind wander. Lesson one, everything changes. She may be baby sis to but an aunty to another person, besides her mum got married at nineteen…

Let’s talk about last year; I didn’t start 2013 with any resolutions; I just started it happy after having a wonderful Christmas with friends, family and loved ones. I had this vibe that it was going to be a good year and I was where I wanted to be, with the right people around me and a lot of things worth being jealous of. The beautiful life, plans and resolutions changed, not for worse or better, life as usual just has its way of redefining existing definitions but ultimately I think I forgot all my resolutions at a point and just lived. Lesson two: At every point in life, even at your worst, someone out there thinks you’re having the time of your life and if you look closer you may find that you actually have it good. But then again, it is the half full or half empty. Religion tells you to be content with what you have and where you are… Call me blasphemous, but I translate it as “be thankful in all things but never get comfortable”.

Hello 2014, my colleague was going to church one evening and I told him to pray for me, I specifically said tell God I want to be happy this year because that’s my only resolution. We got into this small debate about why I should ask God for Joy as opposed to happiness and bla bla bla. Truth is my interpretation of Joy is: Laughter and light at the end of the tunnel, which means I will have hard times but come out strong and so I choose happiness because I don’t want that rough patch. I think I have had enough for my life, plus hey it is all about translation right? Lesson three: Being positive may come off as cocky and wishful but it beats negativity and constant pessimism.

We launched a new company on the 1st of January 2014 (I’ve added this so I can come back to remember the date when I’m old and wrinkled), who knows if it may fail or blow? The only goal was to play with the idea of a business model and see it to completion then move on. Coincidentally Facebook turns 10 this year while Zuckerberg turns 30. Another young man Evan Spiegel just turned down $4 billion from Google and $3 billion from Facebook to buy his company and at first I thought he was raging mad, then I asked: If Mark Zuckerberg had sold Facebook when he was 20, would he be who he is today? Translation: I remember how I looked at 30year olds as really old when I was much younger but now we are kissing thirty or just over it and officially proper old. My consolation came from a song where they said “20 is the new 30 and 30 is the new 20”, but then again that is just an excuse to be irresponsible said my over analytic mind. They say it is not about when you make it, but that you make it and you make it the right way. Is that an excuse to sit and wait for magic to happen? Lesson four: That idea you have, try to act on it, if it fails you either try again or get a better idea.

I should stop now. Life is all about translation, are you lost in it or making the most of it? I may never know but for now, we ramble randomly…

Randomly yours
That Andy

Friday, 27 December 2013

Life, Lessons, 2013

I wrote this for Chioma's blog http://fairygodsister.wordpress.com/2013/12/27/i-dont-even-remember-my-resolutions-for-2013-andy-madaki-on-31days31writers/ ...


Random: The bad part about being friends out of maturity or a good heart with people who have hurt you is the fact that you can never tell some stories without imaginary fingers being pointed at those people or without you appearing to be an unforgiving son of a ‘biscuit’. I have so much to say about the year in review and the first things that crossed my mind were the bad things and tough times, then I remembered I was meant to be writing about the highlights of the year – the hypocritical world called my mind.

I didn’t learn how to play a guitar in 2013, I didn’t learn how to speak Spanish and I can’t even remember my New Year resolutions for the year. I don’t even remember having any because as usual I forget them by the end of April. I think my yearly resolution should be to make a lot of money. 2013 wasn’t the best of years for me, neither was it the worst. One thing I know for sure is that 2013 was a year of lessons. I lost love for one, found it, lost it, before learning what it really was.

Best decision I took in 2013… I took a couple of steps which I had been planning but took me 5years to get off my ass and work on. I moved from the United Kingdom to Nigeria; truth is that felt and still feels so good. A lot changed for me, huge promises and castles that never saw the light of day, people I thought I knew flipped on me like pancakes, friendships were lost and some were rekindled. Importantly I was able to lose 8-10kg at some point thanks malaria and stress, I finally felt proper fit until my mother visited me with multivitamins and “akamu” and ordered me to start eating.

I’m grateful my for family and friends; the new ones, the old ones, the fake ones and those who have stuck by me through thick and thin. I finally do not feel like a stranger in a foreign land, I found peace and realized certain things can only be experienced and not told. Principally I am happy for the gift of life, an overactive mind, ideas and people who believe in me. It is amazing how much we claim we do not care about what people say or think but one mean sentence stays in our minds for eons, and one line of encouragement can give you a boost to make you feel you can conquer the world. Bla Bla Bla, just be nice to the next person and be thankful for still being alive, ok?

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Tithes, Blackmail and Material Things

I would like to believe I have a very good relationship with God. We have really cool conversations like friends; other times like a child who tries to be nice when he/she needs something from the parents. It is only fair to understand that children ask a lot of questions and so I tend to ask God such questions; the weird ones, pastors or priests would call you 'blasphemous' for asking. A good example, is the story about Job in the Bible where it says God was having a meeting with the angels and Satan was present. I had to ask, "Err why can you be having meetings with Satan in this same heaven we are struggling to go to? Why did you have to tell him to go bully Job?"
Anyway, we have those little talks and sometimes I get answers, sometimes I don't.

Two months ago, I got some money and being a christian, who was brought up in churches were it was drummed into our heads to pay tithes, I knew 10% of that money was to go to the church... It was hard... very hard. Well, I procrastinated and later spent the money. Actually,I didn't spend the money, I preferred seeing it in my account balance, until my car developed a fault and just like that I had to spend that same amount to fix it. I asked if it was because I didn't pay tithe and this was happening. I joked about it and said is God trying to blackmail me for not paying my tithe? Two days later, I got an answer to that question. My car developed a bigger fault which meant more cost; twice what I spent the first time. At this point, I said I was being punished for believing in tithes and I defaulted.

The following month, I went to church on the first week of the month. I paid my tithe quickly. I didn't even pay attention to the preaching. I just expected that I'd be forgiven, my money would double, my debtors will pay and we will drive happily ever after... Three days later, I had three thoughts to battle; 1. Maybe it is about time I changed that car, 2. Perhaps God is trying to show me he doesn't need my money 3. I've actually forgotten number 3... Moving on, the car broke down again. P.S At this stage, I had changed mechanics three times... A christian mother, at this time, would advise me to rub anointing oil on my car and pray for it (which I'm strongly considering at this point).

Back to reality and my rambling mind, I thought about people, friends, relationships and our illusions... Maybe most times, people do not really harm/hurt us deliberately as we think. Sitting down, thinking and blaming someone or something for your failures or downtime when the person isn't even thinking about you or bothered doesn't cut it. Same way I learnt maybe I wasn't being blackmailed and God doesn't really need my small money for him to help me or not. I just had to fix my car properly and shut up. Or some cars just have that transformer thing where they have lives of their own and decide when they want to work or not. I'm actually toying with the idea of not paying tithe this month just to see how things will go (God forgive me in advance). Anyway I learnt a lesson, you don't always have to blame someone or people for everything that goes wrong, just fix yourself and live on...

For now, I need to find a taxi or 'Keke' to get home. The car should rest...

Randomly Yours,
That Andy
November 2013

Friday, 18 October 2013

Pretentious life of a" G"

You can't show weakness, you can't be complaining while she complains, you can't let anyone know about it... Any guy who likes Drake's songs is a 'sissy'. You are forbidden to talk about some songs because they are too soft. Real men don't drink Fanta... The list is inexhaustible. It is even worse when you hear things a girl is not allowed to do, say, wear, act, eat, etc;all in a bid to be accepted by the society. Fitting into socially correct perspectives just have a perfect way of making us blend in; ironically blending into the same society where you are not allowed to be basic. You have to be different, unique, special and back to the same old circle.

You cannot talk to anyone about things that bother you either because they will judge you, lie to you or confuse you. You can't write about it because it would mean you are taking shots at someone thus making you petty and silly. Don't even mention social media; your mates are busy trying to be deep, funny or cool, who are you to say what's really on your mind without coming off as weak? Some are family oriented and love family but the problem with family is that they may support you too much to the point where they take decisions that are long lasting for you even when you've let go and moved on from that issue. So you decide to bottle it up.

Lately there's always one story or the other about a child who was bullied on the internet till they hurt or killed themselves. Some on the other hand realised that they had to prove that they are the real "Gs" and they take a gun to a public place and randomly go off killing people...I don't know how this fits into my rambling but I think there may be a connection somewhere between the song I'm listening to and the cold plate of rice I should have eaten 20 minutes ago... Aha! I remember, we all have shit we are going through and we all handle them differently but how long would you handle it pretentiously (like a G)?

How do you let off steam? How do you handle your problems? Who do you talk to? Who are you when you drop your gadgets? The social psychology concept of the "looking glass self" would like to tell you that you are who the society sees you to be. Therefore if people keep saying you're beautiful or ugly, you may start seeing yourself that way and it would have an impact on everything you do. Motivational speakers and life coaches will want you to believe that if you tell yourself positive things about yourself, you may believe it and it would boost your confidence and productivity.

People will still be assholes till the end of time.People will still make fun of you. You will never be enough for some but it can only make you better or bring out a darker side of you. Truth is, we all need to find a way of letting things out. Some tweet, some talk to people, some fight, some hurt themselves, some eat, some work out, some write and some people just have that one person willing to listen to anything and say you will be fine and mean it. I think I listen to music or think of new businesses and write, then still go back to think about what I am running away from but hey, no one has to know because I AM A G. Right?

Who are you?

Randomly yours
That Andy
October 2013

Sunday, 31 March 2013

Hang On (unedited)

I remember when I used to enjoy writing, when I could just imagine a topic and randomly ramble on about it until it bores someone to death or it makes sense to the reader. Safe to say I'm assuming that I actually have readers, but seeing that you are already reading this, then you may as well continue. I'd love to ask how you spent the Easter break and all of that but to be honest do we really want to know how people celebrated the break or are we just asking for the heck of it? If you had a good one, great. If you had a boring or tough Easter, hey hang in there and find one reason to be thankful.

It is the last day of March and Andy is cleaning up the mess in the kitchen, thanks to the feast they had as part of the Easter celebration .As usual he blocks out the world by listening to music. He goes from Jason Mraz to Gavin DeGraw's album "Sweeter", listens to tracks one to four, stops at the fourth song (titled Soldier) and puts it on repeat. Light bulb moment happened thanks to a line in the song where he said "Funny when times get hard at the last moment when you're supposed to charge... bla bla bla Still like a stone". In a minute all of his struggles, past and present flashed through his mind. Through it all, as much as he thought about all his problems and battles, he realised that he was able to come out strong. Most of the time, no one would imagine he was going through stuff, someone once told him that he always had everything under control. I guess that is what "still like stone" means. Do not even try to tell me stones have their own struggles. What if they do? Well, you get the drift.

As cliché as this may sound, we all have our battles and we have different ways of winning those battles. Some by staring it straight in the eyes and fixing it, some run away from it, some resolve it and some go as far as committing suicide to run away from their problems. The subtle reminder that we have been through loads of problematic situations and survived, is the factor that keeps me going. I tell myself hang on. Dolly Parton once said: If you want to see the rainbow, you have to put up with the rain. To be honest, most times I don't care about the rainbow and the rain could also be good but we can't help it. Sometimes there is no rainbow after the rain and we get to appreciate the rain.

Back to Andy, he remembered all the nights in university when he had to drive his car home with the gas tank on empty, wallet empty, hope/ faith: full to the brim. Some nights he got home safely, some nights he parked the car on the road and walked home. At the end of the day he didn't stop driving. Life will throw curve balls at us when everything is perfect, kick that ball, duck or sell that ball.

It took me a while to realise that I was on a high horse, frowning at the way people handle their problems. Thanks to social networking sites, most people put their problems out there and to be honest, as much as I wouldn't do that, I realise it is an "escape" and if it makes them feel better for ten minutes, then that is good enough for 10 minutes. I listen to songs to motivate myself (Praise you in this storm by Casting Crowns is my favourite), some people go for long walks or run, some hit the gym, some eat, etc. At the end of the day you still face those situations. In summation, no matter what is going on in your life at the moment, hang on. You'll be fine.


Randomly yours,
That Andy


March 2013

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Osuofia Moments - of Electric Toothbrushes and Blinking Lights

Imagine waking up in the middle of the night to obey nature's call. You have to go for a wee then Lo and behold, you see this bright red light blinking in your room. As a black man the first thing you would think about is that the cops are outside your house... You instinctively recount the details of the last 24 hours just to be sure you have the right alibi. Now on the other hand, if you grew up watching a lot of movies to the point that your brain is quarter past twisted, then you would think the aliens have arrived. Well, I fall into the twisted category because I automatically said "Blood of Jesus" then started casting and binding evil spirits. Obviously this happened within about 3 seconds. I blame my banker Brother for that and I'll explain. Let's digress a little, shall we?

About two years ago, I was on holiday and I had to visit the Brother. One unfaithful morning, I heard the sound of trumpets, getting loud and louder and you know, louder. And I was like "Dear Lord, forgive me for all my sins, Amen". Those nine words are embedded in my head in case I ever have a near death experience or if I realise I'm going to die. Well, fortunately for me, it was the boy's lousy alarm waking him up at 4am. Who wakes up at 4am though? Lagosians are not allowed to answer that question.

Anyway, let's go back to my latest Osuofia moments.

I had an awesome Christmas, I even got gifts. My Cousin got me an electric toothbrush. Now, while a part of me really hoped he wasn't subliminally telling me I had mouth odour, I was genuinely happy because I've always wanted one of those. It also had a manual I never read (obviously, only boring old people read manuals). So, I connected it to electricity and charged it for like four days, then used it until (scroll back to the first paragraph) I had my alien experience. The stupid electric toothbrush has this red light that has refused to stop blinking for two months now. Do you want to know how I sorted the blinking light out? I wrapped it, then re-wrapped it and hid it under a pile of clothes in a drawer in my room... until the battery dies. Andy 1:1 Technology. I still haven't figured it out but I'm back to my manual brush abeg. Not like my teeth got any whiter after using it.

The last time I had a blog post on my Osuofia moments, I wrote about my bicycle. A week later the bicycle was stolen. I mean, who steals a bicycle? Don't answer that.
Ps: Dear bicycle thief, feel free to steal this toothbrush.

2013 has been a weird year so far but through it all, I'm thankful. I have decided to see life as a lesson, laugh at my Osuofia moments, admit when I don't know stuff and finally laugh and write about the weird times.

Randomly yours,
That Andy.

Sunday, 30 December 2012

Osuofia Moments - Of Bicycles, Cars and Airplanes

Bicycles

I was almost late to work 3 days ago. Now, being late was not the problem, but how do you explain that the gear of your bicycle broke? The thought of it made me laugh at myself. At a time when my mates are buying new cars and renting private jets, I'm wondering why a bicycle should have gears and why the damned thing should even have issues. Right?

It started in July when I bought a bicycle because I got tired of using the weather as an excuse to miss the gym, plus I really wanted to lose some weight. It worked because after 4 months, the same people who kept telling me about how fat I had become, they started saying "You've lost so much weight o", "Please stop losing weight before people will say you've caught some disease". The funniest was my silly brother who said "this boy, you better stop before people will say you've gone abroad to become a taxi driver". It wasn't so far fetched because the same year, I heard some gist about me being a gate/security man. Truth is, even though it was an ignorant rumour, it made me wonder if and what is wrong with someone being a gateman? Those people earn more than some blue and white collar job people.

Amazing how some things teach you a lesson in humility. I came across a 70+ year old woman who jogs at least 4 kilometres every morning. We had a beautiful encounter (or so I thought) one rainy morning when I rode past her, headphones on and all, I noticed she was saying something to me and so I slowed down to say hi. It was after taking off my headphones I realised she was swearing at me for riding past her and scaring her. Ignoring that, she made me realise that if someone in her 70's is jogging daily, I have no excuse not to try and stay fit... I had that fitness frame of mind for, about todays and went back to lazy me.

Cars

I had to go to Benue State in December. The journey from Abuja to Makurdi usually takes 3 hours, not this trip. As much as we may love road trips and all, this boy hates travelling. In order not to trouble anyone, including myself, I decided to use public transport. One hour into the journey, I found myself sweating profusely and pushing the bus. Over-heating. The driver had brilliantly forgotten to add water in his radiator that day. In a country where we are so used to "managing", the driver must have had a vision that the bus in it's rubbish state would get to Benue one way or the other. 5hours later, 3 sets of pushing the bus to jump-start it, I was still on the road. Ended up using 3 cars and spending six hours on the road.

I think at that stage, some sympathy would have been helpful. Rather than that, I had 3 friends who said: "Why didn't you just charter a private air-conditioned bus", "why didn't you drive", "You should have found someone to take you". Well, their comments encouraged me to happily fight them for about 2 days for their helpful comments. Truth is, even new cars break. Hummers have accidents and even helicopters crash. Truth is, shit happens.

Airplanes

For the first time in my life I was privileged to go to a particular country. Well it is a privilege because I didn't exactly grow up in wealth and so being able to give myself a holiday, this Osuofia decided to make the most of it. While we are at it, I'm scared of heights, planes and flying. Simple reason: In a car, a driver can step on the breaks, park and chill for a bit if he foresees some problems ahead. Airplanes cannot. Anyway, being a Nigerian, you can imagine my joy when I found out that the plane was a double decker A380 airbus and had sockets (this translates to charging ports for my BlackBerry battery's 1hour lifespan). Then wifi on the plane. Haaayyyyyyy! I had this "na me be this" moment.

So I gave my life to Christ 57 times this year. Why? Turbulence. I was on another flight from Lagos to Abuja, the flight had been delayed for 4hours and finally while flying, the plane kept on shaking/vibrating. The air hostess had scolded me for using my headphones connected to an ipod classic with no internet connection. If only she knew that this boy was scared and had queued his gospel songs playlist... Just incase the plane crashes, the 57 repentance prayers and gospel music would have definitely ushered me to heaven. Of course the plane landed and I returned to my sinful ways....

2012

Cycling, Taxiing and flying, I chose to look for positive sides in all I went through. Not like they were life shattering issues or anything, but, as cliche as this may sound, there is always a positive side to everything. Work has been work, Nigeria has been Nigeria, too many lives lost. Friends made and lost. Good and bad times but one thing I know for sure is, through it all, I'm thankful.

Have a lovely 2013.

Ps, Happy Birthday @EddieMadaki (1 January)


Randomly yours
That_Andy











Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Sweet November

For some reason, Stevie wonder’s “I just called to say i love you” song has been playing in my head for the last 10minutes. Scenes from The Cosby Show and Theo’s scattered room has been playing in my head... Coming to America, Police Academy, Wild Rose, Some Mother’s do ‘av ‘em and some memories from the past keep tumbling into my mind. And then a Lil Wayne song comes on and ruins my nostalgic mood. In the next couple of hours it would be my birthday. I always get this way before my birthday. Definitely not one to do the whole all out, partying spree and so I'm stuck with me.

It has been a good year, work has been work, family has been family, Nigeria is still Nigeria... I’m thankful. God has been faithful.

Dear November, please be good to me.


Randomly Yours,
That Andy

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Dark Clouds

The father has always been paranoid about security, as is expected with his military background. Give or take, I must have been about 15/16 years old, maybe younger. We had this house fellowship which churches organize in houses every 2 weeks on Sunday evenings. I kinda hated it because I felt; why have another service after attending one in the morning on the same day? We weren't really forced to attend but we did. My younger brother and sister were under 10 years old at the time.

House fellowship had just finished, and mum sent me to put on the lantern, the local one (with thread and fire) as we dint know how long the rechargeable lantern would last. I sorted that out after trying to turn on the "generator" and that too ended up not working. So we had to sort out lamps, gen and the whole works; my dear Nigeria. Mum and dad went outside the building, most likely to say their goodbyes to church members who came over. The gate must have been open and the house, very accessible.

I saw some people walk in, and one grabbed me by the collar of my shirt, slapped me, one even hit me with his gun then told my siblings and I to lie face down while they pointed guns at us. Maybe it was the slap, but at first I thought it my dad who sent people to prove a point about always locking the gates and shutting the kitchen door. The stars from the slap obviously got my mind twisted. They asked for my dad, they asked for money and threatened to shoot my baby sister if she looked at them... Everything happened in about 10 minutes. I'm glad they didn't meet my parents, father would have tried some James Bond bravery stunt which may not have gone right. Fast forward some hours later, the police came in, told us sorry and that we should thank God no one was hurt. The end. As in, that's all. Finito.

Same year, two other members of my family had personal experiences with armed robbers. A few months later, some thieves were caught in Makurdi where we lived, tires were thrown in and they were burnt to death, their bodies left on the road for 2 days. Some more thieves were caught and the same thing happened. Crime wave was high, ASUU/Nigerian Universities were on strike (industrial action) and so I concluded that because school was on "break", cultists were bored or broke and that explained the crime wave.

Fast forward about 15 years after my personal experience. On 1, October 2012, over 40 students in a school (Federal Polytechnic Mubi, Adamawa State) were murdered by fellow humans, this is something most people know almost nothing about. A few days later, some students were beaten up and burnt to death by the people of their host community; they called the students thieves. NOTE: I am 100% against how those students in Mubi and Aluu were killed. More people are being killed in all sort of ways these days. Flood and natural disasters too is another story. I don't have to go on about how sad this makes me feel.

In summation, I tried not to comment on it. In my head I compared the killings to the one by Anders Breivik in Norway, the Colorado movie theatre shootings, the high school shooting in Ohio and many others... The killers got CAUGHT and PROSECUTED. I try not to expect or blame the government or police for everything, but I wonder if ours don't see efforts made in other places. I thought about the students who got burnt and ... Well, even though I had a personal experience, here is what I think: Jungle/vigilante justice is never the answer. It won't stop crime, may reduce it for a while but it didn't stop it when thieves were burnt in Makurdi years ago, it won't stop now. But we don't have to be animals, what's the point in "robbing Peter to pay Paul"? Being judge and jury? As for the rest of us, may these things never happen to us. Experience isn't the best teacher if it happens to you or someone close. Learn from others. Apparently history still repeats itself...


I look up and as much as I want to see hope and a bright future, feels like all I can see are Dark Clouds...

Randomly yours...
That_Andy
October 2012

Friday, 28 September 2012

Growing Up - Fiona Amuzie

I didn't come up with this but I completely lmfao when I read it.



It reminded me of what childhood should be about. And yes, I did most of these ridiculously fun things and it was amazing and I'm proud to say I had an AWESOME childhood and I miss being a child.
I miss the days when we went to school,lined up and the headmistress and teachers would inspect our nails and uniform and then we match to our classrooms.

You Remember??
• The days of Nasco Biscuit,Trebor, Iced coloured water tied in nylon, we called it "lolly"
• The days of Goody-Goody and pako biscuit. X_X
• The days of Ali and Simbi, Mr Salami and Mrs Salami, Agbon, Edet lives in Calabar....
• Chei, I remember those days when one naira na money, when groundnut was 5 kobo. & choco milo sweet was 5 kobo
• The days of 'messing game','who is in the garden', 'police and thief'
• The days of mama & papa play
• The days when we used to build houses with sand, play suwe game,tinco tinco,change your style, ten ten, skipping, stop! You remember nau!
•Those days when we used to fly kite on the streets, when boys used to use the paint bucket cover as tire & their daddy's hanger as the steering
•Those days when rubber band was stock exchange
•The days when votron, jimbo, power rangers, spider man was our favourite cartoons
• The days of limca soft drinks & choco milo advert on black and white tv and sunday rendevous by 1:30pm
• When we say 'leke leke give me white finger'
• Those days when eleganza pen was the best
• The days when we used to drink water from the tap even suck out the water if its not coming out
• The days when NTA will show rainbow color for 30 mins then national anthem before they resume program @ 4pm
• The days when basket sandals, Simbi and bata sandals were the best
• The days when we all sang sandalili sandalili songs, dstv has come and the old fun has gone
I'm really proud to have experienced all these.
If you are not smiling it means you were not born in my generation.
I just hope that your children's generation would enjoy what we enjoyed and all the technobabble stuff wouldn't ruin their childhood.


Enjoy your lifetime!

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Aunty's House

There's always that one family, that comes to visit on Sundays to reduce our ration of "Sunday rice". Yes, well, I did not like those Sunday visitors, can't they see the sun? They should stay in their house na... Well, I just realized that my elder brother and my dad were guilty of this (unknowingly).

Frequent visitors to Aunty's house. The cool part is that Aunty didn't mind. She loved cooking, or let's say they loved cooking in that house. She was an aunt and a guardian to our dad when he was a student at the University of Jos, Nigeria. She did the same thing for my brother, even though they were not just Sunday visitors, her house was a home to everyone.

It is no surprise that Aunty's children are brilliant cooks, her son included. I've always said, don't let Oche cook for your girlfriend or else you will come to his house and find her there one day. I guess it runs in the family. These are some of the memories I have about Aunty's house.

In May 2011, My dad came to visit me in Wales and made sure we went to Manchester to see his Aunty. That journey ehn! If not that it was Aunty's house and the fact that I knew I would go and enjoy good food, I'd have found a reason not to go. I also needed to tease Oche and make him jealous when she cooked for us.

As usual Aunty saw me and asked "Is this Eddie or Andy?", she welcomed us and went straight to the kitchen. I won't go into details about the food but it was very "Ghen geun". We watched Manchester United play Manchester City or was it Chelsea(?) I can't remember. I remember she loves Manchester United, my dad loves Arsenal. They spent good time talking about how Chelsea fans are touts and why they think it is weird that I am a Chelsea fan.

With two parents in one room, Andy sitting down, pretending to concentrate on what was showing on TV, it wasn't long before they drifted into marriage gist. They analyzed all her children and their partners, discussed about my brother and then came back to me. She said "Andy why are you not saying any thing? What do you think about all we have said?"...

I had a really nice time.

That was the last time I saw Aunty, we had devotion and prayed in the morning. I promised to come back and visit her. In August 2011, Oche called me to tell me Aunty just passed on...
The entire time we were at her house, Aunty was ill but she hid it well and was very positive. Its been one year now and I'm glad I went to Manchester, I'm glad she was always there for us. We miss Aunty, we celebrate her...

I'll always remember Aunty's house, she's forever in our hearts. I know she's in heaven cooking up a storm as usual.

Randomly Yours,
That Andy
August 2012

Monday, 30 July 2012

My Mai-Guard Diaries (Lost)

Friday: I had a good day.

Saturday: I planned to cycle to work until I discovered I had a flat tyre. I had a funny day.

Sunday: I planned to walk to work. I did. After 7 minutes, I realized I forgot my glasses at home so I had to turn back, get my glasses and use a taxi to work.

Monday: I planned to use the bus to work. My alarm forgot to ring.I'm sure I didn't oversleep. I had to call a taxi. He answered me, went back to bed and made me almost late...


Go back to Wednesday:

Black and Jamaican bus drivers are people you don't want to mess with; they are always angry. Well, almost always. The black driver in my town seemed to be always mad at me and he didn't need to say a word, he just had that f**k off look whenever he saw me, like we were fighting for the hood throne. I remember one morning I had to be at work for 6 am, dude decided to stop the bus and smoke a cigarette (because I was the only one on the bus). I felt he wanted me to start a fight or maybe a conversation... two things I can't be bothered with at 5:35am.

On Wednesday, the black driver drove the 1 o'clock bus. That day, he said hello twice and asked me what I was listening to (because I had my headphones on). I told him it was some random Gospel music and he went on to have a long chat about how the Nigerians in his church always "did the most". They pray and sing louder than everyone in his church. We had a long and nice conversation. He went on till he made me miss my stop. He told me I just had to walk down the road and I'll find the post office. I walked and walked and walked with foolish confidence until I discovered I was lost (As usual). In my defence, the 3 streets looked the same.

I learnt some lessons last week.

I had every reason to have a bad week but I didn't let that happen, I saw it as an experience. I also learnt that most times we feel some people are snobs even before we reach out to them but in reality, we are the snobs. I still don't believe I have to say hey to the next man just because he is my "colour". Ultimately I realised that it doesn't hurt to say hey either. Most times I'm lost in a world of what I believe is appropriate but I learn everyday. We all do, if and when we want. Bla bla bla...

Think good thoughts....


Randomly Yours
That_Andy
July 2012

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Osuofia Moments (re-cycling)


"If you come between 1st to 10th position in school this term, I will buy you a bicycle", said the mother...

Well, for some reason I wasn't one of those who always came 1st in class but I survived and that term, I'm pretty sure I even got promoted on trial. There's this thing about parents where they threaten and punish you but at some point they may still get you what you asked for, even though you didn't achieve what they wanted (or sometimes, they just beat the shit out of you). To cut the long story short, I think I still got a bicycle because my elder brother (who was the smart one) did really well in school. To avoid a Cain and Abel situation, the parents decided to get him a bicycle and got one for me too in order for peace to reign. That was a wise move because knowing how mischievous I was, I would have deflated his tyres every night if I didn't get a bike too (insert straight face smiley).I had my bike for about a year before I was able to get rid of my fear of falling and actually teach myself how to ride.

Welcome to 2012

As a child I knew of only 2 types of bikes; "BMX and Chopper". I heard some even had gears but I never rode one or knew how that worked. This knowledge prepared me for my Osuofia moment when 20+ years later I decided to reunite with bicycles in a bid to be fit and to avoid waiting for buses and trains. It was one of those mornings when I needed to use a taxi butvcouldn't get one; it was even more annoying because if I had a bike I'd have made that short trip in about 30minutes. In a random moment I decided to get a bike after work. I chose to be a Nigerian and go for a "Ghen Geun" (big name, modern)one. The guy at the store asked me if I wanted one with 18 gears or 21 gears and I said "Hian, what's the difference please?"... Who would have thought bicycles had gears? who would have thought they have up to 21 gears? All I needed was two wheels to ride.It gave me greater joy when I reported my Osuofia moment to the brother and he didn't know about the plenty gears too. Sounds silly and unnecessary, but I had learnt something new from the simplest thing like a bicycle.

Being a Nigerian, it is typical to act like you know: why should I read a manual to ride a bike? Even though the last time I rode a bike Was when I was about 10years old. Proud as a cock, I took the bike to the road and started riding. The guy at the store made the seat so high, he claimed that was the way to do it. He forgot to tell me my two legs wouldn't touch the floor if I stood straight on it. You can imagine my fear and shock when a massive truck sped past me and almost blew me and my two wheels off the road.The ground was a long way away to fall and I was riding down a hill that was so steep it was about 30km/h or so. At that moment I had forgotten which brake was for the back tyre and which was for the front. However, I knew that if I had mistakenly pressed the brakes for the front tyre, it would have meant me falling down head first. That day I said "Blood of Jesus" like 120 times in 60 seconds. After that day, I parked my bike in the garage for like 4 days till I was sure I had recovered from my experience.


I learnt some new things from "re-cycling", those seemingly unnecessary moments change our lives and recycle our thought process. My arrogance and all knowing mental image was shredded in my Osuofia moments and this has reminded me to be humble and as usual to enjoy my Osuofia moments while I learn from them. Learn something new, ask questions, read the signs, bla bla bla. This just got boring.



Randomly yours,
That_Andy

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Shame on me

In one of the many secondary schools I attended, we had "General Labour" every Wednesday and Saturday. Very easy to remember those days, as they were the days when if you could disappear, you would have been the happiest teenager in Kogi State. General Labour always started with one prefect finding a reason to mobilize his colleagues to flog literally everybody, for some reason they loved it. Since I'm rambling, it may interest you to know that I don't have the slightest idea how that relates to this topic. Right, Labour! we used cutlasses and machetes to cut the grasses in some parts of this school (I just pictured a very local school). Twelve years later, I'm in a new town and we have this very bushy garden in front of my house which was unkempt for one reason: I didn't know how to use our lawnmower and I needed a police permit if I had to buy a cutlass.

In full Osuofia mode, I went to ask my flat mate who is from an Arabic speaking country to teach me how to use a lawnmower. From the look in his eyes he must have been saying "how spoilt can you be not to know how to use a lawnmower". I just couldn't be bothered to explain that I grew up using a cutlass. Lets call him Idris. Idris showed me how to use the device which I enjoyed and imagined all those Oyinbo films where a hot chic would be checking out the guy who is so homely and hard-working... I drift away from the topic once again.

Shame on me.

I watched the trailer of of Sacha Baron Cohen's movie "The Dictator", where there were four people in a helicopter and two were chatting about the Statue of Liberty and fireworks in Arabic but to the pilot and co-pilot all they understood was: 2 middle eastern adults mentioned "Statue of Liberty" and "Boom boom boom" = Terrorists and bombs. When I watched it, in my head I blamed the Americans for putting that stereotype in my head. I have been in buses, trains and classes where I see an adult male with a beard from ear to ear, turban wrapped round his head and a backpack... One of those moments where You repent all over again just in case the backpack contains a bomb and I end up dying. In the same way, I have sat down in buses that were full but had an empty seat next to me (may be because I am black and no one wants to get mugged or have their pockets picked perhaps?).

Last week in Nigeria, a man was arrested and even made international headlines as he was accused of being a suicide bomber who planned to kill some Minister of the Federal Republic. Later that day I saw a picture of the bombs and found out that they were tear-gas canisters and some live ammunition. Maybe those were locally made bombs or real bombs or another silly way to distract us by our Security Services but I understood them considering the fact that Nigeria is gradually becoming a terrorist nation and it is better to be safe than sorry blah blah blah we know how the story goes....

The irony.

I finished mowing the lawn and no hot chic even noticed me (not like I wanted that to happen), I walked to the kitchen to get a glass of water and Idris as usual was on his phone. All I could hear was:

hakla hamla rackla hesnfr **%$%u& "McDONALDS", "ALTON TOWERS" *insert more Arabic words*.

Shame on me because sub-consciously I asked myself if maybe he had such ties and he was listing targets? have I become paranoid because of the news and stereotypes? When did I become this person? Yet we are quick to call white people racists, short people - wicked, Scorpios - evil, Muslims - Boko haram, etc... I mentally shook my head and told myself...

Shame on me.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

The Lilies toil not to blossom by Lily


Now, before I go any further, I must introduce myself. I’m an unashamed, unapologetic and hopeless believer of love. Right from when I was a little girl, I knew I was going to marry the Man of my dreams. (No, not Denzel). A man I was head over heels in love with. Of course ‘’the Man of my dreams’’ began to change in form as I matured. Whereas a starry eyed teenager on my list was the usual ‘’TDH’’ (tall dark handsome) I’m sorry, have never been into light skinned guys. They look fragile. I’ve always wanted a strong black man… anyway, moving on… I had this list where apart from obviously being TDH, he had to be witty, intelligent, FUNNY, sensitive, strong, honest, full of integrity, bla bla bla… funny enough I never wrote a 2God fearing man". I just knew I could never love a Man who didn’t love the Lord.

I’m genuinely puzzled when I see scores of women bashing marriage everyday on social networks, and to be honest, I feel sad. Who or what could’ve hurt them so bad to be this vehemently opposed to something the Lord created to be a beautiful joining of two people? I believe environment and genetics forms us as individuals…as well as personal choices. And so it is with Marriage. Your perception of Marriage possibly arises from these three things;

1) Your parents’ Marriage (or lack thereof), the history of Marriage in your family, sisters, Aunts or the like,
2) Views on Marriage from various TV shows and movies,
3) Your own personal belief In the Institution of Marriage.

It’s almost as if every day is a "Marriage Bashing Day" on twitter. There’s someone I follow who constantly tweets horrible stories of how evil Men are and why Marriage is a terrible idea. After a while, I had to follow encouraging accounts of how beautiful Marriage can be, and the way God intended it to be. Where did we go wrong? I have this friend that gets off on when relationships/marriages end. She would quickly ping me to break it to me how so and so was divorcing. Yes sadly, sometimes people fall out of love. Marriages end, some women go through hell on earth just to remain married. It doesn’t mean every relationship is doomed to fail. You can’t live your life on that premise. I loved being single, having fun with my girls, doing whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. Having my space, deciding not to cook. But I also knew that I couldn’t do that forever. I wanted babies. And I wanted someone to love. Most importantly, I wanted to be a part of something meaningful; Someone to come home to or vice versa, someone I could share a part of me I never have with anyone in the world. And I knew there were certain things I had to give up. You can’t enjoy being married if you don’t make up your mind to close some chapters. I’ve never been the type to enjoy 10 different guys calling me, frankly, it gave me a migraine. I love having just one man tell me I’m his sunshine, I love knowing that this Man will be the father of my children.

For me, my first views on Marriage stemmed from my parents. I grew up in a household full of love and laughter. I’ve never seen a Man love a Woman as much as my Dad loved(s) my Mom. He was never ashamed to shower her with lots of praises before us the kids, visitors, in public and even in her absence. Of course they argued, also in our presence, but they always seemed to get over it so quickly! They never kept malice. This taught me that a woman can and should have her own opinion, hold her own and not be a door mat, however, don’t let the sun go down on your anger and learn to hold on to what’s most important! When it came to in-laws, my dad showed top priority to my Mom, even as a little girl I knew you couldn’t mess with my mom, my dad wouldn’t allow it.This invariably put everyone in their place.I remember whenmy dad looked at me and said, if the man I married loved me half as much as he did my Mom, I would be fine because love never fails. He always said he first met my mom when she was 18 and more than twenty years after, she was still the most beautiful woman he had ever beheld. Sometimes when she cooked a special meal, he would say, ‘’ah Madam, I should go back and pay another bride price, you get better with age!’’. They were always laughing together and many times, we would catch them exchange loving glances at each other. I never ever saw him or heard him belittle her. And she would tell you a thousand times that she has never felt threatened by him in anyway, physically or otherwise. And this instilled in me the belief that this was how Marriage was meant to be. This is how a man should treat a woman. And I expected no less.

Perhaps this gave me terribly high standards on what to expect from a Man. However, as I got into the University, my ideals began to change… in fact the whole picture I had in my head about dating a guy who was cool, sensitive and funny just disappeared. Blame it on the school I went to, I don’t know, but I just froze up. I left University without ever dating anyone. I was too disillusioned. These guys were nothing like what I’d been reading (and expecting). Big apology to all my University guys. It’s not you, it’s me. I knew I had to make that climb down from the high horse soon. But even then, I knew I wasn’t going to settle for less
But I held out, I wasn’t giving in to just any guy. Sometimes I wonder if I had experimented with a lot of guys, perhaps I would also have had the view that ALL MEN ARE THE SAME. Be that as it may, the only two Men I ever dated showed me a lot of respect and made me feel special. The first broke my heart, the other, I married. So perhaps, my knowledge on men is vastly limited. I do know however, that where one was very indifferent and non chalant, the other was extremely sensitive to my needs and very attentive. It made me realize, no two men are the same! You just can’t have it all. Sometimes you have to experience a little bit of the bad to appreciate the good. Life is all about compromises. You just have to be discerning and know what to compromise and what to hold on tightly to.There are pertinent qualities that must be present, others you can learn to live without, and others you must never tolerate.
As for me, I believe when you strongly believe in something, call it fate, call it cosmic synergy, or the Will of God, it just comes to be... what you expect, you end up getting and you’ll find you didn’t have to struggle hard for it. ’’The lilies toil not to blossom’’just be true to you. If you abhor marriage for whatever reason and want to remain single, that’s okay, whatever makes you happy? Just don’t make it on the premise of your parents’ failed marriage, or some celebrity marriage, or worse, just to join the marriage bashing bandwagon. I admire strong, career oriented women who don’t feel pressured by society. And I certainly don’t think Marriage is the be all, end all. My husband is probably more passionate about me following my dreams than I am! I may not have a perfect marriage, and lord knows my husband has his numerous flaws, but you know what? So do i. And if he can see past all that and love me so amazingly, then so can i. There are little things that warm my heart, like when he brings me breakfast in bed every weekend, rubs my feet, annoys crap out of me, and the inevitable fights (and makeup). I wouldn’t trade it for anything. It’s not a walk in the park, but nothing of lasting value ever is. I did marry the Man of my dreams (well, minus the Chateau in France, the Swiss bank account, the Newyork penthouse suite, the castle in Scotland, the Villa in Spain and the Yatch in Venice). Imperfect as he is,I am committed to enjoying Marriage the way God intended with positivity, constant forgiveness, trust and love.

Yes, I’m a believer of love.

Friday, 20 April 2012

IT ALL BELONGS TO ME by @Kamie_doll

I am alone in the dark. I love the dark. No light not even that blinking red notification light of my BB. Just beautiful perfect darkness. My golden noir I call it. I can see in the dark you know, well just the images my mind and I come up with. They are usually beautiful and sparkly. I have some ugly ones too but I do my best to suppress them ugly ass images. I hate to ruin my Golden Noir, I don’t get it as often as I want.

Earphones in my ears, music blaring at the highest volume (I love me some loud music). I’m in the mood for some Gregorian chant but I am too comfortable and I am scared if I stretch to get my phone I won’t be able to get this very comfy position again. Plus, I really don’t want to ruin the darkness with the bright back light of my phone. Anyway, music shuffles itself to Brandy and Monica’s latest song ‘It all belongs to me’. I love this song and I don’t get why peopledon’t. The video even makes it more loveable for me. Not necessarily the concept but the clothing and styling totally gets me.
I’m pulling my Gangsta in bed singing along with Brandy and Monica "I know you're mad/Can't take no more/But put that back, that ain't yours/Have a fit, slam the door/But leave them bags on the floor/That shit belongs to me", bla bla bla... Song plays out and a strange French song starts playing. I dint even know I still had this strange song on my phone. I should delete it. My mind wanders back to the Monica and Brandy song.

Should we really take back everything when we are done with someone we were in a relationship with? The clothes, the cars (TAKE THAT BACK ALREADY), the rings etc. What should we take back and what do we overlook? Is it mature or does it spell immature to the last letter? I remember a friend of mine who went to her Ex flat, packed up all the (silly) things she had given him when they were dating and brought them back to her apartment. What are you going to do with these I had asked? I dunno, trash it I guess she replied. I just don’t want anything we shared in his possession. I imagined me going to my (now) Ex's apartment and taking the wine opener, the plates, the clothes (few) I bought for him etc with the ‘That shit belongs to me’ attitude. I can’t, I just can’t imagine it! But, if I had bought him a car I’ll want that back with the millage reading 0.00km! :D

However, there are something’s I would want back. The ‘TIME’ wasted with you. That’s not a waste if you think it through. We shared some damn good times and then your sorry ass(or my sorry ass) ruined things but I still want it back. I want my saliva back, the ones we swapped while kissing. I want my sweat (you know how that came about) back. I want the wetness of my trocha back. I want the soft moans of our love making back.I want my hymen back. I want the climax I gave to you; I’ll save it and give it to someone else. I want all my stories back! I want my secrets back! I want the meals I cooked for you! I want, I want, I want...

Hell, it all belongs to me!


Ooooowwwweeeeeeee, music has shuffled itself to the Gregorian chant – Masters of the chant. Bliss!!! I love these monks.