It is a Saturday night. I am at Auxerre, an upscale bar in downtown Port Harcourt. I am sitting at the bar, with a glass of Ciroc nestling in my palms. I can see everything happening clearly enough although the bar is dimly lit. At the table closest to me, I see a man who, by the looks of it, is not yet thirty. He is decked in an all-white ensemble of white shirt, jean trousers, Nike boots and a face cap. On his left wrist is a silver-hued Rolex. He is talking animatedly to a young lady, black shirt and red skirt, with her hair neatly tied in a ponytail. She seems oddly disinterested but he does not seem to notice this, instead becoming more animated, as he gets further into the story he is telling. Continue reading “The Bar”
You get to the bus station, which is crowded and the dust from early harmattan is just about everywhere; from the white buses to boxes and bags, all are buried in dust.You ask when the bus to Lagos will be leaving. The attendant tells you it is in twenty minutes and also informs you that there are only two seats available. You quickly pay for your ticket and make for the bus. You thank your stars for having arrived just in time and skipping the waiting period. Continue reading “The Bus to Lagos”
Character means choosing to never live in the thick of thin things. It means being brave as well as objective, and always having the courage to try. Character is in treating people ‒ friends and strangers alike‒ as we would want to be treated, with respect and dignity.
When I think of fear, what at once makes its way into the confines of my thought is paralysis. Anytime I have felt truly afraid, what I was compelled to fight was usually the inability to act. And this was not always an easy fight; it is harder to make a decision than not make one, especially when faced with seemingly impossible choices. Choosing the right thing to do out of many competing options can prove difficult. And yet, it is then that our characters are strengthened. Continue reading “On Character”
Chidimma sits in front of the dressing mirror as the makeup artist works on her face. Several layers of concealers and foundation have succeeded in covering dark spots and the little scar on her jaw. She struggles to recognize herself with the well-drawn eyebrows that look like arcs. She notices that the detailed contours give her small nose a pointed look and add elegance to her cheekbones. Her red lipstick matches her red dress which is itself accompanied by a pair of silver six-inch heeled shoes. Continue reading “Waiting”
Something else that strongly affects execution is how you go about your plan and where your priorities are set. Sometimes, even when you are convinced that it is a great idea or project or that the solution is feasible, there is that tendency for us to focus on the unnecessary. I have learnt to divide my project planning steps into three distinct categories.
We all have had that one project in mind or that idea that we feel could change the world. Excitedly, we share it with family and friends and they are equally excited and say something like“You go, Egiemeh!!! Show them how it’s done”. Or, you have a seemingly big problem and you go seeking solutions and from the same group of people, you get the most logical solution to that problem but in your head, “It’s not as easy as it sounds”. Continue reading “It is as easy as it sounds”
And, again, she sat to say a prayer. Seated there, it seemed like a scene better suited for some other place—this light skinned teenager with firm legs beneath a bench, whose smile, a slice of unspoken caution served full, bowed upon lines of folded arms, a contrast to the stationery seller to her left, who stood above, bodies touching, screaming at a customer on the podium who had ignored him, the guy with faded T-shirt wooing a seatmate whose blouse had loosened at the seams, resting upon her shoulders in an awkward imbalance.
Continue reading “Freshman Year Chronicles #2: Making Friends”
How many other things do we overlook daily? Whether it is family or friends, being healthy or having a shelter over our heads, we have grown into unobservant people who do not pay attention to most things. We overlook or do not even notice that we are alive – full of life – amidst the unending bustle of our daily existence.
Wie viel ist aufzuleiden – How much suffering there is to get through. – Rilke
The sky is beautiful. The thought hit me as I sauntered down a well-worn path as the sun had begun its steady descent from view, on a late evening in early May. It felt like a new discovery but then I understood that it was not. It was simply the first time in a long time I had paid attention enough to the sky to notice its beauty. I had taken its presence for granted, with the belief that it was the sky after all. It would always be there, and it sure did not need my appreciation. Continue reading “Fanning Life’s Embers”