Archive - February 2015

1
Living, reading and setting goals
2
Helping the Help
3
A conversation I might never have
4
One down, eleven more to grow

Living, reading and setting goals

                Two weeks ago, I joined an online book club. I’m hoping this move would help me read more books this year and improve on that achievement as I go on. We are a 21-member, all – female group called the bookshelf and I feel really good about it. A few days ago, I posted the article below on the group’s page: What is your reading target? 10 minutes a day? 30 minutes? An hour? A book a week? A month? Quarterly? Annually? One of my 2014 resolutions was to read two (or more) books a month. For someone who claimed to be a voracious reader, this , I admit, was way below my reading standards. But while I played with the idea of increasing my monthly book count, I also considered other areas of my life. I had to be realistic; that’s what the R in the popular S.M.A.R.T goals setting acronym stands for. Because setting the goals are easy. Achieving them…not so much. 2014 started off brilliantly. By the end of February, I had six books under my belt – Mastery, The Art of Speaking Well, Life’s a Pitch, Dreams from my Father, Secret of the Ages & Creative Confidence.               I                 I was on fire! My next book in March was Footprints of an Iconic Diplomat. It took me four months ( shame, shame and more shame) to finish a book that had the word ‘pictorial’ as part of its subtitle! They say it’s the middle months , March – August, that truly tests your determination to stick to your resolutions. I just got proof of that statement.                 My reading went downhill from there and almost crashed into a valley. It was June already. I fell ill in July and just became strong enough in August to travel for my brother’s wedding. All the while I tried ( I really did) to get back on my reading track”more

Read More

Helping the Help

By now we would have had a president – elect/governor -elect/whatever – elect, all things being equal. But no, we had to go and postpone the elections by six weeks (starting February 14) because of Boko Haram. With the security agencies stating they’d defeat the insurgent within that period. I’d like to optimistic about their claim but is it really possible to achieve that? Maybe. Already some good news of the security agencies winning the war are trickling. They’ve reclaimed some of the towns taken over by Boko Haram and have also killed some of their members. Then again, maybe not. Shekarau, the head of BH, declared in a new video recently that they’d disrupt the elections on March 28 and April 11 while children suicide – bombers are doing their thing in every public place they find. So unless the insurgents are totally destroyed, wiped out, chances are their reign of terror would continue unabated and even more at the end of six weeks. God help us in this country! To totally defeat BH. To conduct credible and successful elections. And to experience some semblance of peace after both events. Amen. In my last post, I mentioned once having a cleaner who came only on Saturdays. She didn’t last more than six months. Why? I couldn’t rely on her and she came in only once a week! In addition, I was distracting her from her earthly journey towards heaven which was invariably tied to her unreliability. How? I’ll let you know in a bit. When I was in search of a cleaner, I knew I would, most likely, be spared 75% of the drama that came with domestic helps. Even then, I was still wary. The horror stories were still…horror enough to question my decision and put me on my every guard should I go ahead with it. I wondered what she’d bring along with her — her attitude, her beliefs, her habits, her dress sense. Nevertheless, I put the word out to friends and family. I’d never confirm or deny my doubts if I didn’t make an attempt,”more

Read More

A conversation I might never have

Last week I overheard my younger sister, Pru, on a telephone call. She is in town for a while and staying with us. ‘Good evening. How are you?’ … ‘What’s your name?’ … ‘Ok. Have you done this work before?’ … ‘How old were the children?’ … ‘Ok, Abigail. As you can see my children are younger, so you have to be patient with them. Once they get used to you, it will, hopefully, become easier to take of and manage them. You can always ask the other girls in the house for help until you find your feet. Ok? All right. I’ll speak to you tomorrow. Goodnight.’ Pru is in town without her children. She just finished talking to the new domestic help hired to take care of her children with her husband and mother – in- law closely monitoring. She’d call in often to check with them and the help for updates. I suppose she’d have preferred to interview the new hire face –to – face as well as approve of her but…here she is hoping this five – minute cell phone conversation and subsequent ones will prove that the hire was a good one and give her the peace she needs concerning the well-being of her children. What heartache! I tried hiring a help a few times, a few years ago. T was still less than a year old and my mum was leaving us after helping out and, I was ready to go back to work. A former boss made the necessary contacts and a 20 – something year old showed up at my doorstep, bags in hand. I never got to see her but my mum and my beau did. They interviewed her. My mum thought she was ok. My beau hedged and hawed. There she went, never to be heard of by us again. We settled for crèche – care for T and I juggled mother, wife and career somehow.  I did, however, get a cleaner who came in on Saturdays only. She lasted for about six months. Besides cleaning the house, she was”more

Read More

One down, eleven more to grow

I got this message from one of my gal pals, Muimui, yesterday: Hope it’s been a jolly Jan 2015. This is just to wish you a happy weekend! From our family to yours. A refreshing change from the ‘Happy New Month’ crap that makes the rounds every time another month rolls in. I told her this much when we saw each other in the evening and it turns out she can’t stand the ‘happy new month’ greeting either. Peas of a pod. Any surprise why we’re besties? So it’s February 1. A new month. The longest month has come to an end. FINALLY. Tired of how January simply refused to end, someone called it the 65th month of the year. I totally agreed with him. It just kept on dragging for days… Not anymore. Welcome February. Hello Valentine. What’s up, elections? Here in Nigeria this month, we’ll be mixing loving and voting on the same day. Subtly telling one another to let love reign and not wage war so that the process of elections (especially during and after) can take occur peacefully. Seriously??? Eh…let’s hope it works. Today, I’m reflecting on the month just gone by. Thanks to Muimui’s message which inspired the idea, I’ll be doing that at the beginning of every month as regards my resolve in 2015. Most days in January, I asked myself: Did I live today well? Did I laugh often? Am I living joyfully, thankfully, prayerfully, in more colour?  Salsexercise, slow down and not multitask? Turning all my resolutions into prodding, slightly uncomfortable queries. Sometimes, I did. Sometimes, I didn’t. Some days, I didn’t even read the resolutions which are saved on my cell for easy access but I never forgot to repeat the inquisition the very next day. Normally, I’d wait until the half year mark before I did a self – assessment of my performance and, most often than not, find myself coming woefully short of my grand expectations. Not this time. Not this year. I read somewhere that it’s the months between March  and August that test our abilities to stick”more

Read More

Copyright © 2013. Idolors domain