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.

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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.

Into The Wild I go

There’s always something refreshingly new about nature. And if you’re lucky—like I was today, you just might find that often, nature has more to reveal to you than anything you could ever possibly imagine. Earlier today, my wandering muse led my petite legs through a path into the wild, showing me layers and layers of beauty embedded in the most seemingly insignificant affairs of nature.

Foliage
Camouflage Affair

I wandered, learning from the tiniest insect whose survival depends on an insignificant twig, a rotten foliage in an inseparable union with the earth, a blossoming flower whose awaiting its pollinating suitors, a flowing stream underneath heaps of brown mud and sunbows radiating many shades of luminescence beauty.

Fallen
Brown Beauty

Then I found my lips parting in a whisper
How do I take part in all of these?
A rhetoric, Yes
But, No. Mother Nature gave an answer
Be careful what you ask for, human. For in this world, taking part means no turning back.
Then I smiled. And unto her I made a plea
Take me. Even deeper into the wild…

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Watercourse

Thursday. 12:45 Noon. Ibadan, Nigeria.