Archive - July 2018

1
July in review: 25 years later
2
Adventures in school run: Prayo
3
Adventures in school run: At the last minute
4
Who was your principal? You have no manners/respect
5
G.L.i.B – bed: My first Stephen King book
6
G.L.i.B-bed: The Bourne Initiative

July in review: 25 years later

Quite a lot happened this month: My new series – Adventures in school run- took off to hilarious and relatable feedback. I’m definitely on the right track. The children began their long holidays and jarred my schedule just ever so slightly. The weather alternated between good, windy, wet, cold, annoying… And I read three books – The Bourne Initiative, On Writing and We’re Going to Need More Wine. I’m still reading through Ghana Must Go (It’s taking it’s time to completely grab my attention). My 9a.m. – 5p.m. picked up the pace considerably, surprisingly. The four-times-a-week torture lasting 25 minutes paid off, seven weeks after and just one week before my secondary school reunion. Was I pleased! Will keep at it until I replace my workout routine with new DVDs. By far the highlight of this month was attending the SMAGOGA Annual General Convention. It was a reunion on several levels – with the house, with old school friends and classmates and with the town which holds treasured memories for me. It  was a whirlwind of activities that weekend but I packed in as much as the 24hour period could contain, and every moment was worth the smile, the lack of sleep, the trip down memory lane , etc. Thank you, July; you were sweet, full of spice and everything nice.

Read More

Adventures in school run: Prayo

Before Pumpkin, school run was a breeze with T. She loves school. She is the child equivalent of the workaholic; Monday is her favourite day of the week. Before Pumpkin, we were driven to school by any of the men in our lives – my beau, my brother or a taxi man. Even days when unforeseen circumstances occurred – the car just won’t start, the taximan’s blatantly lying about his location and making us late – and we had to walk to recruit alternative transportation, T. took it in her stride. She was a happy girl, willing to go the distance to achieve an expected end – school. Then her brother became of school – going age, and that seemingly mundane activity turned into a whole kettle of fish altogether. Unlike his sister, Pumpkin sees formal education as a complete inconvenience. Going to school doesn’t quite fit into his life’s plan when there are cartoons waiting to be seen and all – day lounging to do. But he goes anyway because, well, he doesn’t have a choice. He’d be all smiles and happy at home, and even during the trip to school. Immediately the school gates came into view, he’d shut his eyes and that’s when the bawling began. Harrowing times, those were. (And to think his very first day of school saw him all excited and cheerful, talking non-stop with his teacher, welcoming his classmates and even assigning sitting places to them, playing assistant teacher. Any misgivings I had about his attitude towards school were dispelled. Back then I had thought he’d take to school like fish to water.) And no stretch of petting, consoling from me or his teachers stopped the flood of baby tears. Anywhere but school and they would have been dammed speedily; but as long as he was within the confines of those walls of learning, replete with teachers and rules, he teared up piteously. The sight of him crying miserably, desperately, rent my heart which subsequently hardened as I handed him over to his teacher. Crying would help expand his lungs, I thought; something”more

Read More

Adventures in school run: At the last minute

Good morning…let the stress begin… Enter the jaws of hell that is school run… The mad dash of crazy that has to be condensed into 10 minutes of sheer hell… Some downright brutal descriptions of that mundane activity parents/guardians engage in on school days. I’m in that camp as well (not the extreme descriptions) and think those 10 minutes can be as unpredictable as a Nigerian politician. Here are my stories.       The familiar scraping sound of metal sliding on a hinge greeted me as I flew through the front door, hands laden with my morning paraphernalia – a handbag, a laptop bag, high heeled shoes and my cell on speaker, blaring the news analysis. Somehow, I managed to secure the front door’s lock and join the bickering twosome by the car. “It’s my turn,” declared T, firmly, screwing up her face to match her tone. “No, it’s mine!” shouted her little brother, Pumpkin, rather rudely. “Enough!” I interjected as I cascaded my bundle onto the passenger’s seat before turning my full attention to them. It was a miracle the door was still functioning and in perfect shape. This exact drama played out every morning before we left the house – whose turn it was to open or shut the only door of the car which slides. This coming on the heels of their excitement over the car when it arrived some months back; it was a spacious, elevated machine akin to a moving house. Think trailer. Or room and parlour, as a friend referred to it. And I thought the situation had been resolved. Hadn’t we all come to an agreement, a mere three days ago, that one person would open the door and the other would see it shut? Of course, in their wonderful children mentality, everything goes awry in the absence of an adult. When the cat is away, the mice come out to play and scream. “Both of you get in.” I commanded crisply. “Backs on the chairs and seatbelts. I’ll close the door!” So much for instructing them to get settled in five”more

Read More

Who was your principal? You have no manners/respect

    This time last week, I was attending my first SMAGOGA Annual Convention, the 19th in the series. The photos of the event are already everywhere – Facebook, Whatsapp, etc; old students were uploading them per second, per second. Every year, the event brings together old girls of the school from all corners of the country and beyond for a weekend – long of activities that include (but not limited to) an annual general meeting, elections, a dinner and a thanksgiving mass; basically, formal and informal meetings. The focal point is always the school and how we can help the current students and give back to a community we would always be inextricably connected to. Among the crowd of old girls who thronged into the ancient city of Benin for the slated weekend, we were only 13 – women strong in the ’93 set and, for me, it was a sweet reunion. I hadn’t seen some of my friends and classmates in a quarter of a century. We also had many pockets of hilariously moments reminiscing of our time way back when and common grouses – the afternoon school we endured, the sister who tormented our existence in SSSI (What was her name now?), the garrulous government teacher, etc. Hurray for portable cameras in our ‘phones, there were enough selfies and photos to fill a gazillion old girls’ gallery. (No photographer holding us to ransome or ‘I don’t like my expression/pose in an irreversible print out.’). And like I mentioned above, they were uploaded immediately after they were taken. If you haven’t seen any by now, where have you been in the past week?!     No Chill The ‘area’ trait in the old girls emerged twice within the space of an hour. Both times it was collectively but one of them was duly instigated by the outgoing national president. As it is with events such as this, speeches were endless, elevating our boredom quotient. This was quickly dispelled by one of the speakers who made a grave mistake. He pronounced our alma mater’s name in the same way”more

Read More

G.L.i.B – bed: My first Stephen King book

Never read a Stephen King novel. His movies, themed on horror and sci-fi, are indications and keep me at arm’s length. Not this one though. Not this one on his journey to being the brilliant writer he is known for and his opinions on the techniques of writing successful books. I heard about On Writing 18 years ago and only just got my hands on it. My notes from the book are 14 leaves long. It was well worth the time I spent in the mind of this genius writer of the 21st century. I now have a new reference material henceforth. Here are some excerpts: To write is human, to edit is divine. Write with the door closed, rewrite with the door open. Writing is a lonely job. Having someone who believes in you makes a lot of difference. Sometimes you have to go on when you don’t feel like it, and sometimes you’re doing good work when it feels like all you’re managing is to shovel shit from a sitting position. Life isn’t a support – system for art. It’s the other way around. The basic use of vocabulary is use the first word that comes to your mind, if it is appropriate and colourful. Writing is refined thinking. You have to read widely, constantly refining (or redefining) your own work as you do so. Reading is the creative centre of a writer’s life. Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life as well. It’s important to get the back story in as quickly as possible, but it’s also important to do it with grace. Let your hope of success (and your fear of failure) carry you on. Every book worth reading is about something. Good fiction always begins with story and progresses to theme; it almost never begins with theme and progresses to story. The story should always be the boss. Writing good dialogue is art as well as craft. Description”more

Read More

G.L.i.B-bed: The Bourne Initiative

The Brotherhood of the Rose was the one Robert Ludlum book I read in the ‘90s. That I didn’t look for another of his work meant it didn’t make a memorable impression. However, I went ahead to see the first movie adaptation of The Bourne Identity. It left the same taste the aforementioned book had previously – no desire for more. Enter Matt Damon and the recent version of the Bourne movie series – Identity, Supremacy, Ultimatum. Now we’re talking. I could watch all three movies time and again without a trace of boredom. So it was Matt Damon I saw in my mind’s eye as I read The Bourne Initiative (Didn’t even know it existed as well as many other Bourne titles not written by Robert Ludlum), all 500 pages of it. No disappointment here. It was classic fast – paced, espionage, multiple-countries setting Bourne read. The entertainment value was perfect to the t. The language or rather style of writing made my eyebrows climb a rung. The use of nouns as verbs, even in odd constructions, proliferated the book. A little too much to my taste. The blood fountained. Where they bivouacked. Her skin goose-fleshed. Though some were fascinating to come across, I doubt I’d adopt the style for my personal writing. Nevertheless, excellent read.

Read More

Copyright © 2013. Idolors domain