Happy Signs on a Lonely Ranch

 

Embers

Despite their full promising days, there is usually an odd feeling that gives me the shivers whenever the -ember months approach. The reasons for this, of course, are not far-fetched. First, of the four -ember months, one must definitely usher me into a remembrance of my birth, a happy moment usually short-lived as I also have to celebrate the exit of a beloved mother. Second, as much as I love Christmas celebrations, the anxiety of the New Year often make me a worrier such that I barely notice when the Christmas trees are decorated and lit up until late in the first half month of the new year when the trees have served their purposes and are about to be taken down.

But walking on a lonely ranch last afternoon and seeing some of these very happy signs, I can confidently affirm that this year is surely ending on a blissful note for me (and I hope it does for you too!)

But what are these signs that I’m so excited about?

First… Clean clear paths

Path

Normally on an afternoon like yesterday’s, the ranch I visited (which is nested somewhere between my neighborhood’s estate) would be busy with people—mostly wanderers like me who I’d have to share these paths with. But for some reason(s), I only met  a clean clear path that stretched before me and beckoned to be marked with my footsteps.

Path 2

 

Colorful Butterflies…

Butterflies? Yes, butterflies. These very beautiful and colorful creatures seemed to have been stalking me for days. But yesterday, they flew right to where I was brooding alone and simply took over my entire evening! I wouldn’t say I’ve not seen many of this breed in my lifetime, but never have I been so happy to witness such an interesting moment live! And to think I was also allowed to intrude and take a shot of them? Well, it’s definitely gonna be colorful -ember months and a New Year!

 

First

So while I’m basking in the euphoria of the four promising months that end this year, allow me to also wish and usher you all into a blissful September, October, November and December!

 

 

With Love from Abuja

Abuja, the Capital city of Nigeria, is known for many things. Aside the fact that it is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful cities that Nigeria boasts of, this ‘city of varieties’ remains the place to go when you’re NOT only interested in relieving stress but also in dire need of fine treats for body and soul. And not to also mention that just because you’ve decided to visit Abuja, you’re only a half ticket away from dining with the First Man in his very magnificent Aso Villa… (LOL!)

So, a while ago I visited this delightful city courtesy of the Association of Nigerian Authors’ 35th Anniversary International Convention – a four day event in celebration of Nigerian Authors, books and art. And you can guess that from the very moment I stepped into the city, all I wished was to stay for more than four days. If not for anything, at least to explore the very carefully planned city whose beautiful landscape I’ve only heard and read so much about. And so when it occurred to me that the program of event included an itinerary marked for the second day, I literally danced in the air and got my curiosity tools ready.

Buks

A fifteen minute drive from Garki, the main venue of the event was all it took to get to our first destination – the Writers’ Village at Mpape. And with the very large mass of land awaiting ultramodern residences for writers, well, let’s just say that the present and future days of Nigerian writers are glorious.

Eno

The second tour which was also my best experience was our visit to the Art & Crafts Village at Wuse. Here, there was much to feed the eyes on: baskets, raffia, sculptures, paintings, African textiles in different colourful shades of prints and patterns were all on display for sale and fancy. And since I wasn’t about to miss out of appreciating art the best way I could, I jumped to work without any caution. But unfortunately, I had barely started to click away when a familiar honk blared its signal to cart away its faithfuls, among whom I belonged.

Shop

Big

Panels

“But we just got here!” I heard a woman scream to the air. She had sat behind me in the bus and had boasted to buy the entire Crafts Village to everyone who cared to listen. We both exchanged sad glances and as if choreographed, marched together to the symphony of another impatient blare.

Later that evening, while in a company of a colleague who never takes anything serious to heart, I lend my frustrations a voice.

“You won’t believe that I had barely taken two pictures when that driver honked for us to leave!”

 “Take it easy girl. Count that one too all joy and part of your Abuja experience.”

With such a not so comforting comment, all I could do was frown into the night and swear at my notepad as I managed to write this post.