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Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Rose-Tinted Glasses

Today I will like to push into the recesses of my mind the bad things in Nigeria. In a form of a disclaimer, I do not consider the problems of Nigeria trivial in anyway neither do I commend our leaders for they have wronged us as a nation. Instead, today I just feel like replacing my tired old glasses with rose-tinted Ray Ban Wayfarers (It is good to dream big).

First and foremost big ups to all Nigerians and I mean ALL Nigerians. From the very wealthy to the abysmally poor for we are survivors. Living in Nigeria has taught me so much I could NEVER have learnt outside Nigeria. If we were animals in the jungle, Nigerians would be the Rhinos. Smashing any and everything that is blocking the way to success. Belligerently refusing to give in and give up. Laughing out loud (lol) at the idiots who try to throw things at us while forgetting how tough our skins are. Nigerians are my heroes, my people and my family. We still have time and energy to smile, laugh, cannodle with family, work hard and live despite all the adversity we face on a daily basis. I mean not only do we provide ourselves with electricity, water and shelter (basic amenities that ought to be provided by the government) so also do we provide ourselves with an education, a job and justice (however primitive mob justice is) which are supposed to be the basic rights of any citizen of any country.

However looking at the crux of the issue, Nigeria is not so bad. I love going home every holiday that I can. I don’t care about fuel scarcities, lack of electricity, the heat or mosquitoes. What I care about is the ache I feel every time I have to travel out of Nigeria to go back to school. What I care about is the separation I must suffer when I leave the people I love the most behind (even if they in turn will be leaving Nigeria for England, America, Canada wherever). What I care about is the strangeness I feel every time some woman speaks Zulu to me despite the fact that I just spoke to her in English. What I care about is the joy I feel planning my next block of time in Nigeria, the next one being summer (yippee!) What I care about is the way my ears are attuned to the word Nigeria or any of its derivates such that even if I’m clearly not listening my ears ALWAYS catch when Nigeria is mentioned. What I care about is the happiness flooding my spirit as I think about my country.

I want to spend my adult life travelling around but I know my heart will be in Nigeria until I return. Even if you have been away for ages and ages, somewhere in your soul hidden from sight is this love of Nigeria. No Nigerian who has lived in Nigeria is able to convince me that they don’t love Nigeria. You might not know it but Nigeria knows it. And really that’s all that matters.

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