Saturday 18 December 2021
Thursday 20 May 2021
Christine was heading to the Carrefour not so far from where she lived, in the 13th district, arrondissement, as the French called it. The 13th arrondissement is a charming area, depending on the part you live in. She lived close to the National Library of France, on the long boulevard called Vincent Auriol. That area overlooks the Seine River and all you need is within reach. Shops, metro stations, buses, restaurants, a swimming pool, clubs and a cinema. This Carrefour was three stops away from the metro stop outside her door, ‘quai de la gare’. She had just finished shopping and was waiting in line to pay when she heard someone call from behind, but she assumed he would be talking to a friend. He kept speaking like he was speaking to someone far from him, which made her look over. There was a woman right behind her, then a man before this man that was calling. She and the woman behind her burst out laughing, it was just ridiculous. The guy was relentless and said a few nice things, the one she remembers clearly; ‘if I were to wake up next to you every day, I would be happy for the rest of my life’…She did not want to believe he was talking to her but in any case, that provided entertainment for their time on the queue.
Friday 16 April 2021
I have had a more manic week than I’ve
had in a long time! I've been on holiday
for over three months so I have probably lost touch with life as a working
A friend of mine who lectures at Institut National des Sciences Appliquées in Strasbourg (INSA) asked me to be a guest speaker in her class. Little did I know what I was getting myself into! One of her courses is conversational, so her students are required to have conversations in English. She asked me to speak about something cultural in Nigeria which I was glad to do. After giving some quick facts about Nigeria, I went on to speak a bit about my state of origin, Benue.
Lest I forget, I got some funny answers when I asked what the capital of Nigeria was. I'm chuckling as I remember...I even got Bamako!
Thursday 1 April 2021
I visited Lekki Conservation Centre in 2014 but I hardly remember much from that visit. Maggie, suggested we visit last week and it was such good fun.
The entire centre stands on about 78 hectares. It is open every day but on Mondays. To visit, you'll need to make a reservation online. We didn't know this, by the time we got to the gate, the guard asked if we had made a reservation. He insisted that we do before he let us in.
Wednesday 24 March 2021
She caught his attention as she walked in, her slim frame was the first thing he noticed. That always seemed to do the trick for him. She was bubbly and happy, her laughter was from deep within and it was infectious. They were attending a conference, so he stayed professional until they went dancing over the weekend. She could move and she filled the place with the way she danced, one could not help but notice her. He found that he got more and more drawn in, all he hoped for was that she would give him a chance.
He spent time trying to help her settle in as she would be around for a month. He constantly proposed activities, and started by picking her up for breakfast the next weekend, then showing her around town. She was a curious one so it worked out well as she had so many questions, some he could not even answer. At some point, they had to resort to google to satisfy her curiousity. They spent a pleasant day together and he found himself laughing much more than he had in a long time. Since he called it quits nearly two years ago, he had not been attracted to any woman and had started to question whether he was still normal. The hurt from those years ran deep.
Friday 12 March 2021
My sister and I set out for the immigration office early, hoping to finish in good time, before there would be a rush. On what seemed like a normal work day, the officers attitudes and behaviour was far from normal.
On arrival at the gate, this conversation took place:
Officer - what are you here for?
Us - passport renewal
Officer - who are you going to see?
Us - we are going to renew a passport
Officer - one of my officers will join you so he can help.
We stared at each other blankly while the officer was waiting at the door. I unlocked it and he got into the car. It really was not a request, the senior officer was informing us. As we drove to the car park with the officer, he asked whether we had made the payment online for the passport renewal and if we had the print out. We didn't, with the assumption that we could pay there. He confirmed we could, so there was no issue. However, with the ongoing National Identity Number (NIN) registration, an extra layer of hassle had been added for those who did not have their NIN. My sister was in that category.