Monday, March 24, 2008

FAKE LASHES.



So I did say I got me some fake lashes that looks quite natural. Well, it's over a week now, and I'm still rocking it. Though truthfully, I am tired. There are times I want to scratch my lids, and I can't to my satisfaction. They are supposed to fall off on their own. It's over a week now, and they don't want to fall off. I will find out about lashes remover. There should be something like that.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Yesterday and Yester-Years.


This is a 3 in one post.

ONE
Me posing above, in school two years ago with the very first gown I ever purchased with my money.
The school that I try not to regret that I attended. Two years after, no results. Stupid.

TWO
What I love most about my face are my eyes, and I love to make them up.
Last Week Friday, I almost freaked out. I went to the salon and decided it was time for a new look. I got out of hair extensions, so my hair can breathe. Fixed eye lashes for the first time!

I was so scared. The first thing that jolted me when we began was the girl screaming at me. 'Dont Blink!'

Imagine seing something coming at your eyes and you are told not to blink! At the end, I had tears falling from both eyes. The lashes were beautiful and so real, worth the stress, but my eyes were red, and someone told me sorry later, thinking I had apolo.
Since my lashes, I imagine that everytime I pass by, people are staring at my eyes and wondering. Oh sexy!

THREE
Yesterday I Had Fun!
I don’t drink. But one in a while, I like to get tipsy. The last time that happened was December 29, where I almost emptied a bottle of Irish cream. I was so wasted I promised never again will a sip of anything alcoholic touch my lips. Then good yesterday, at my friend’s place, her fridge was well stocked and she introduced me to a cheap red wine that turns her head. I got a full glass and swallowed it in two gulps. She nearly fainted. “What? You took that like water! I’ve never taken even half of what you took.”

I smiled. “I’m cool.”
She laughed. “You are so finished. Just don’t move.”
I bragged. “I be Warri babe. Drink no dey catch (pronounced cash) me.”
And it was morning, and I’d not eaten anything. She quickly brought me bread and butter, and while eating to save my senses, so I don’t get taken advantage of to confess my past and recent sins, we relaxed watching Playboy TV.

And I used to think ‘The Girls’ Next Door, Of The Playboy Mansion that is – Holly, Bridget and Kendra were the ultimate.
Jesus Christ! What didn’t I see? Imagine all those girls, American sex star, the ones who host the private night calls, etc. It made me remember that I once had a longing to go to New York and dance on tables. I was seventeen then. And I don’t know if I still just don’t want to do that.

And my friend said there’s a club on Victoria Island, and that the owner pays his strippers very well. Ok stop! I ain’t going that far! At all! At all!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Birthday Parties and Rice


I was home over the weekend to spend time with my folks and siblings, since I’ve not seen them in a while.

Later in the day, I was going through my picture box when I saw the above picture that inspired this post, about birthday parties and rice.

As a child, I attended enough birthday parties where a birthday cake was absent. In place of the cake is salivating jollof rice, dished onto a tray, dressed with onions, tomatoes and lots of meat. On both sides of the tray are soft drinks.

Then the celebrant and the well wishers, stand behind the tray of rice on the table, and pose for pictures, with the celebrant holding onto the spoon on top of the rice hill.

After the pictures, the adults stand and watch us children eat the birthday rice together. And I don’t remember having up to three spoons, because the rice gets finished in a second. Another tray is brought, and same thing happens, because there are stronger hands with wider mouths, who swallow rice instead of chew, thus their spoons make regular trips. And the saddest part of these (rice tray) parties is that the rice is usually so delicious and I never get to enjoy it.

Those types of birthday parties were never fun for me, unlike the one where I get a plate to myself (pix above. I’m second from the left, the only socks wearer).

And eating in one spirit wasn’t just a birthday thing alone because I count a Christmas spent in the village, where visiting children to a house had to wait for more children to visit so that they all could spoon into a tray of rice together. Extremely gross.

And that aside, I’ve heard tales of families with lot of children, having to eat from the same place, and it is always the stronger ones that get filled. As in everything around us, it is the survival of the fittest.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Warri Means More

And one other thing, you know back in the days, parents named their children according to circumstances in their lives.

My great great-grandfather, Owowo was a known warrior who killed lots of people at war. One day he went to war. After causing lots of spoils, he was surrounded by the enemies. They were all shouting in our language that he should be surrounded because Owowo knew how to disappear. Surround him in my languaue is ‘wadeware’.
So, Owowo was surrounded and just as he was about to be captured, he disappeared.

On getting home, he learnt that his wife had put to bed a baby boy. So he named him edeware – meaning ‘to surround’. A war memory becomes his son’s name.

After another war, people were describing Owowo’s killing acts and said he killed so much that blood was flowing like ‘ekere’ – meaning a ‘stream of water’.

This man went home to meet a new born son, and named him ‘ekere’. Another war memory.

Ekere, my great grandfather, grew up to have, I don’t know how many wives. But his last wife, was my great grandmother, and she had just one child. A boy. My sweet late grandfather. On the day he was born, was the day white men, journeying around Nigeria, entered Warri.

So he was named Warri. Accordingly, I am supposed to be bearing Uzezi Warri. Somehow, we all escaped it and still go by Ekere. But my father wants to make sure his father’s name is not forgotten, so he answers Warri.

So you see, Warri means much more than that city to me. It is my late Grand daddy’s name and I can’t say Warri or visit Warri, without remembering that sweet man who used to speak correct English to me anytime we were together, not because I couldn’t speak Isoko – I can, but because he loved to speak English.

Wow! Is It Really Warri!

The break was so much worth it.
I went out of Lagos to a place I have always called forsaken, Warri, for four days!
The reason I agreed to attend the marriage ceremony wasn’t really because the bride was a friend – she is a friend of a friend – it was because I wanted a change of environment, and wanted to keep my friend company.

Leaving Lagos, I knew what to expect. Bad road from Ondo all the way through Benin, and I wasn’t wrong.

One of the high points of the first leg of the journey was almost spoilt by the driver of the Expert, who drove into the park of Sizzlers for us to eat.

“Hey!” I went. “Sizzlers no dey sell starch and banga soup oh!”
The guy by my side was like; “Oga abeg carry us go Ofosu where we fit get some native food. One of the things we enjoy about traveling is eating our native food.” Then he told me most times, on his way back to Lagos, he buys food in a take away plate for his wife.
My friend added her voice while the remaining five passengers said nothing. The driver, God bless him, moved on and Ofosu we got to and I was ready to do justice to the starch and banga soup with bush meat. The soup was ok, the starch was too soft! Heartbreak number one!

We got to Warri and I was dumfounded. “Is this Warri?” I asked. The roads were sooooo fine and wide. Then we took a cab to our lodge and I was open mouthed. I thought I was in Ikoyi for real. The houses were so beautiful, the roads so clean, the electricity so stable that I found it difficult believing where I was. It has been over five years since I visited Warri.

I finally believed I was in Warri, when I heard the people speak. Of course, everyone in Warri is a comedian and their accent is sooooooooo funny. I actually sat down watching three women talk and I thought it was home video. They take their time to talk and their pronunciation will make Ali Baba appear old.

You are walking down the road, and someone you don’t know goes like, “Sister I hail oh! I greet oh!” my friend and I just smiled. We were really in Warri.

I noticed that more constructions were in place in Warri and also Ughelli, were the marriage held. I passed by my old school, AGGS and ohhhhhhhhhh! Can’t I just walk in and see?

Not to mention the road blocks we passed by that were actually used during the recent war or fight of the tribes. I felt like a reporter in a post war area! But I was too late to see the destructions cos all I saw was fine, fine, fine. All this beauty covering the mess of the government.

That does not mean I am now at peace with my state oh! I’m still so mad cos Ibori put his cousin there as governor. Ibori built a hospital in a place called Agbero and named it after his wife. The natives refused for the hospital to be opened cos they gave the land and he had the audacity to name it after one woman that is not even from Delta state!

But like a passenger said on our way back to Lagos, Edo government should learn from Delta state and do something about their roads!

Coming back, heartbreak number two occurred when our driver stopped us at Sizzlers to eat. All the fast food in Lagos and I have to eat rice and chicken on the way from home? Jesus me!

Anyway, I recovered and we continued the journey to meet the heavy downpour that blinded lots of driver. In Lagos, the jeep in front of us lost control, did a 360 degree turn before our eyes, skidded to the left pavement, bounced onto the road again, facing us and halted.

It all happened so fast that we didn’t know what to expect. Luckily, our driver wasn’t on high speed, so he could stop very fast as the drama unfolded, else we would have slamed into him, and another slam into us from behind.

The driver of the jeep was open mouthed, unable to believe what just happened. Luckily, no car was on his left. The luxury bus to his right also applied his brakes on time.

I was so thankful to God for journey mercies and the fact that I came back with a cooler of Owo soup and raw starch to go with it. So for the next one week, I am so game for my starch.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Just Asking

I went to my profile for lack of what to do, after singing Daddy Showkey on Diary of a G. Beneath is 'Delete Blog'. if I click on it, will it ask 'are u sure u want to delete' or it will just delete. I feel like trying it.

My Bit Of Remembrance

….and she died. It is one event in my life, I will never forget.

I believe I don’t like looking back because there are memories that I would rather want to suppress. I think that is the reason why I find it difficult to remember some names and people when they come up in conversation, or I get to meet them. At a point, I pretend to remember and go ‘okay, yes. I remember.’ Then when I am told of something that happened, I quickly nod my head so there will be peace.

Some memories from secondary school can NEVER be forgotten. The first is the death of my cousin’s school daughter – we were in the same dormitory. The second is my sixteenth birthday, cos I almost lost my life. Kidding.

Anglican Girls Grammer School Ughelli, was fun after school hours, because we run relays everyday. Immediately after lunch or during dinner or prep or even when we are sleeping, someone might scream, ‘BOYS’ and the race begins because on girl wants to be caught by the BOYS. Who knows what they will do.

Behind the school is this thick wood that I never ventured into. And there were lots of shortcuts to and from town, so the town boys and some Government College Boys, used to come and have fun, trying to see if they will see some naked girls. They saw plenty.

Usually when we hear boys, whether at night or during the day, there is only one place we run to, the closest house mistress place.

On this afternoon in December, while the state schools were contemplating going on strike, we were in the dorm when the shout came. But it wasn’t the usual shout of boys that we run from. It was an excitement because the boys were caught by the guard. They were two.

From every corner, we ran and poked to get a better look. We picked whatever from the floor and threw at them. The security man kept telling us to move back. I was standing between Onome and Ufuoma.
“God don catch them,’ I remember Onome saying excitedly. She was a class my junior and thus calls me whom she was bigger than, Sister Uzezi.

I think there were talks about taking the boys to the house mistress place while we were warned to stop throwing things at them. We refused to stop because it wasn’t everyday we get to catch these people who make us run from our prep and hostels and dinning hall. They gave us hell, so we wanted to give the scapegoats, hell.

Something happened, I can’t really remember. We all had different version of what happened next, then the security man’s gun went off.

There were screams, then everyone was quiet. I thought I was shot because I felt stuff on the back of my hands so I looked closely. I later realized it was gun powder. At the same time I was looking at my hands, I saw Onome jump up and scream ‘My God, I am dead.’ Then she hit the floor. Then the commotion started. The bullet passed my front and entered Onome’s side – beneath her ribs.

People were at her side. She was being carried to the house mistress place, when my cousin, who was her school mother, also called Onome, came around. She was coming from town and passing to go home (her family lived in the premises cos my aunt her mum, was one of the teachers and house mistresses).

She quickly took over her school daughter, crying like the rest of us who had surplus fluid in our eyes. Outside the school gate, the bike man was scared when he saw all the blood.

So there was a picture of Onome, carrying Onome, that dead weight and running to get to a hospital, the rest of us, following behind. Eventually a bike took them. At that hospital, they had no equipment to operate the girl who was fast losing consciousness, so their ambulance took her to another hospital.

Back at school, we were all aloof. Will she make it or will she not? The other girl that was standing by my side, Ufuoma, was called by one of the house mistresses and sent to Warri to bring Onome’s parents, since Ufuoma knew her place. She and Onome’s mother came back together that night. By that time, Onome was in the operation room.

We later heard from people who were there that immediately the doctor came out and Mama Onome saw him, she started crying that her daughter was dead. And she was dead. They couldn’t even find the bullet in her!

The news got to school and we cried and gossiped and whatever else we could do.
Then the stories began.
One said, “she saw it coming. Onome knew she was going to die today which is why she arranged all her stuff today. She had gone to the house mistress for an exit note to pass the gate and go home, but was refused.’ Then they were like, assuming she got the note, she might have had an accident on the way, or gotten home, slept and exit the world that way.

Another gist said, her mother had been dreaming of it, that she kept saying something was wrong with Onome, that she was actually preparing to come to school to visit when she saw Ufuoma coming from afar and recognized the uniform. The news was that she had grabbed Ufuoma and screamed what has happened to my daughter?

Then we heard that Onome who was actually the first born child, was born after thirteen years of marriage, that her parents had done some native things with you know who, to get her, and that she wasn’t supposed to live long, which was why they had about five more kids after her. Bullshit.

That night, we all dreamt of Onome. I saw her running around the field.
A day later, the much talked about strike happened and we were asked to go home. Two days later, they came for her things on their way to bury her. The things which Onome took her time to arrange. We could only stare at the coffin, knowing she was in it. How did she get there?

I remember her hair to be really bushy then, and she said she was keeping it for Christmas, so she could braid. She never saw that Christmas.
She was very beautiful and could make people laugh.

The one consolation we all had was knowing she went straight to heaven, because after the bullet entered her and after her scream of ‘My God, I am dead’, immediately she hit the floor, Onome started praying. While my cousin carried her, all through the way, she was praying and asking for forgiveness. She kept praying till she lost consciousness.