naija blues

Naija…Ohne Das Wort; Pikin

It feels like forever since I was in Nigeria, but it has only been four years…

I got info on a cheap ticket to Port Harcourt so I figured I take it. But my passport was expired and I was not planning any Nigerian trips in another ten years so renewing my Nigerian passport was never a priority.

Well, as it would happen, at the Frankfurt consulate, I would need to wait four weeks to renew a passport and yes I could have done it one day in Berlin, but I wasn’t about to take a trip to Berlin for just a day.

Next option was to get a visa with my American passport. So I was charged 190 euros regardless of me also being Nigerian. His defense was that the American embassy charges Nigerians 1000 dollars for a visa so I should not complain.

Anyways, I was excited at first about the trip, then I started feeling all sorts of anxiety and was wondering if the trip was actually a good idea.

But the truth is that I needed to pick up documents no one was able to help me with and to visit my family. After the death of my mum, I always wanted to have a talk with my older sister, so this was my chance.

Coming home was very surreal and I was so excited but I had nightmares of being kidnapped because of the scary stories I was hearing. Apparently there isn’t any kind of night life in the city of Port Harcourt anymore because of how dangerous it was getting. I would freak out if my friend kept me out until 6 and I would imagine silly things happening.

Anyways, I arrived all of five days and I hadn’t achieved any of the things I set out to do which drove me insane. I got all sorts of emotional and was on the brink of tears and threatened to come home the next day.

But then I spoke with my twin and she calmed me down, gave me tips on how to get things done. So I got off my ass and dedicated one day to getting my statement of result from school, checked off my passport renewal list(getting all the requirements due to change of name) I experienced a high dose of nostalgia and I loved every bit of my little vacay.

Sure we are flat ass broke after this trip because even after finding a cheap ticket, I still managed to spend a lot of money prepping for the trip and to stay three weeks in Nigeria.

Driving past stores and seeing all the beautiful ankara fabrics I could go home with got me so excited with my plans for the handmade section and I wish I could take them all with me.

 

Alas, I couldn’t. But I took as much as I was allowed to. Plus our precious ijebu garri and egusi!!! I got all that covered!

Check out that gorgeous jar of plantain chips

It’s sad that I didn’t see my mum. But I got to see my friends and my baby sister who has two babies of her own now!

Do I miss Nigeria? Well I miss the Nigeria where I could buy fish at the bole stand for 50 bucks. Paying 200 bucks for a piece of roasted fish, 150 for a stick of plantain? Ah ah. Na so Buhari make things happen?

  

I saw a lady hawking beautiful and fresh looking crayfish and when she said her price I was excited and asked for two portions. My friend is like why won’t you price? Don’t just pay what she says and I’m there thinking price 350? That’s cheap enough na.

Turns out she had said 3500. How the bloody hell did I hear 350 right? Lol. Probably just the resident cheapskate in me.

  

I managed to drag my friend out to the streets to buy hot akara and fresh bread for bfast and it was beautiful. The feel of hot spicy akara running circles in your mouth as you chew to savor the taste of blended beans deep fried over firewood, the smoke whispering across your face and nostrils but you don’t mind because you know the greatness of the akara kind!!

I am disappointed though by the state of the airports in Nigeria. The Lagos airport even tried sef. Port Harcourt international airport has been under construction since 2012, maybe even before. There is no belt for your suitcases. The attendants just pull out your luggage from the cart and you identify which belongs to you.

Up to this day, airport officials still rummage through your belongings with gloved hands, regardless of the suitcase going through the scanner.

But that’s Ok right? It’s going to either be completed one day or the airport will be closed down. We never know with this country abi?

I was hoping to meet up with some Lagos and Port Harcourt bloggers, have lunch or do cocktails and talk about staying consistent with blogging but as we know how time can fly so quickly, you begin to wonder where it goes. One minute you are falling into bed tired, mosquitoes biting every part of your body,  and longing for some Klimaanlage to blow you as you snore and the next minute you are crossing a very busy road to enter a bus heading to Mushin. True story!

A friend I met up with in Lagos does something that I find very smart for anyone living in Lagos. She drives her car all the way out of her estate on to the road, parks, and uses the transport buses to work. For me, I think it’s a great way to reduce the congested roads in the city of Lagos. If more people can take public transport instead of driving, it will most def reduce the ‘out of this world’ traffic jam that is so synonymous with Lagos.

The argument will most likely be that the buses are dangerous but in my opinion, driving in Lagos is dangerous! The roads, the mad drivers, the impatient drivers, the pedestrians, the roadside refuse dumps, the list is endless. More people need to use the public transport system and leave their cars at home during work hours at least.

But the need to maintain a status is what kills the system.  Sad as this sounds, it is the truth. Lagosians should read the Do Better Manual by Luvvie Ajayi I’m thinking!!!

I attended the last day of Lagos fashion and design week and the runway show was amazing. Best of all was Tiwa Savage! She was beautiful and so was her singing Sadly, I left my camera behind and wasn’t able to go all Blogger on my trip but I did enjoy every bit of it.

I took a short trip to the city of calabar as well but my flight got delayed and by the time I arrived, it was dark and I didn’t have the chance to visit all the historic places of the ancient city.

I enjoyed my trip, but there really is no place like home. And home for me is where the Mr is. I was excited to get on the plane home and know he would be waiting for me. Seeing him as I walked out with my suitcases(yes I basically brought all of Nigeria with me!) was the most amazing sight ever.

I’m thankful for the chance to see my family and friends again and the trip made me realize how much I missed them and I look forward to seeing them again. But the heat? Nah, I’m going to so pass on that one. It was so freaking hot I had to shower three times daily especially in Lagos.

Anyways, my post on the Lagos fashion and design week will be coming up pretty soon and as sad as I am that I have no photos, I do have videos which are way better… I think! 🤣🤣

Good night folks and stay safe and warm.

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