Author - idolor

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G.L.i.B-bed: The house my father built
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A toast to all …certified and otherwise
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Nigeria’s 57th: Independence day thoughts
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Another Cultural Day Experience
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September in review: Still recovering
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Prompt: A happy story in three words
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G.L.i.B-bed: A thousand splendid suns
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In my own company
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August in review: Knackered
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Siblings speak

G.L.i.B-bed: The house my father built

After the unsated feeling left behind by Diary of a Dead Nigerian and Like a Mule bringing Ice Cream to the Sun, one would have thought I’d steer clear of small – sized novels. But neigh, the first read of this month, The House My Father Built by Adewale Maja – Pearce, fits perfectly into the little mould, and promptly leaving me with a sense of unfinifshedness (if there’s a word like that!) as the other two previous books did. Third time’s the charm, right? Perhaps I’m a sucker for short, well – written book. The pull to devour them always triumph over thick tomes with promises of more reading time. For me, it’s not how big; it’s how well – put together. And thirdly, (didn’t know I was counting), sadly, small novels tick all the right boxes for me. I am willing to risk the Oliver Twist’s feeling it would elicit when I turn the last page. No disappointment there. I was left wanting more after consuming the book in less than 48 hours. The landlord-tenant relationship in Nigeria is a rather unique one. At some point in time, the tenant could be mistaken for the owner of the[…]

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A toast to all …certified and otherwise

If you’ve held a child and jogged along as s/he learnt to ride a bicycle on your instructions… If you’ve pointed out words and painstakingly pronounced them properly for another to repeat and remember and read… If you’ve effected an attitude adjustment where there was once deviant behaviour… If you’ve trained a child, a sibling, a protege in the way s/he should go and s/he is yet to depart from it… If you’ve inspired confidence, kindness, gratitude and a pay-it-forward way of life… If you’ve nurtured and mentored a dream, a passion into full-blown tangible reality… If you’ve instilled discipline, obedience, respect, courtesy, empathy in another… If your guidance, nudging, support and frequent yelling have resulted in a better human… If after reading the following quote: “The mistakes of a doctor are buried underground, the mistakes of a lawyer are locked behind bars but the mistakes of a teacher walk up and down the streets ” you think of all the other possible options you’d have taken to instruct, impact effectively… Then raise your glass with mine in a toast to us. However, if you’ve done all of the above (and so much more) as a calling, in a controlled[…]

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Nigeria’s 57th: Independence day thoughts

This time last year, I wrote a laundry list of Nigeria’s faults and foibles, dwelling on our various disappointments and disgraces, reliving the country’s shams and shame. It was basically a scorecard with a large X mark in bold and bright red colour. The question I asked was: If Nigeria were to be likened to a person, would s/he be considered successful at 56? This time yesterday, God knows. I was geared up to reprise the incident on a larger scale, replete with caustic remarks and snide sides. It was already in the works; use the words of the national anthem or the pledge (or maybe, the coat of arms) and take them apart, line after line. An hour – long radio progam interrupted my dangerous intentions. A special in commemoration of the nation’s independence anniversary. Both anchors of the show – male and female – urged listeners to call in and mention any national achievement that made for personal pride. The first person started it off with Nigeria’s first world cup appearance in ’94. Then the female anchor chipped in with hers – the GSM revolution and the ease it had brought into our daily activities. The next couple[…]

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September in review: Still recovering

It’s amazing how at the end of last month, I looked forward to the prospect of this one.  30 days have come and gone, and I am not twirling in delight; neither am I signing with relief or laying down in exhaustion. Instead, silently, I am seething with contained anger at one aspect of my life – blogging. Besides this post (and one other), I can be described as going awol on this month. That’s because I spent most of the month trying to get up to speed with August’s posts (and yet to complete them, by the way. * covers my face in shame. *) They are taking longer than expected, and so is my recovery period from the four – week holidays with four energetic little humans. The only meaningful writing I engaged in can be found in my journal; even that took quite an effort to achieve at the end of every day. And I wish I could say that was the only blip in a month which seemed like a very smooth ride from the beginning. My reading took a severe beating as well. From a fantastic – four – books- in – four- weeks last[…]

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G.L.i.B-bed: A thousand splendid suns

This book gave me more mixed feelings than any other novel had in a long while. One minute there was hope in the horizon, light at the end of the dark passage; the very next, it came crashing down like a ton of bricks jarred by a mischievous toddler. It was no help that the location was Afghanistan and the lives of two women juxtaposed, highlighting their different upbringing, until the effects of war bring them together. More depressing was the Muslim customs laid out in the book – child brides, uneducated females, hijab-wearing invisible women, etc. A stunning display of the heights patriarchy can be taken to, leaving a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach each time I gleaned an inference or occurrence of any one of them. Nevertheless, I kept my eyes glued to the pages until the very last leaf; there was no stopping me on this rollercoaster of self – inflicted despair. Khaled Houseini’s depiction of his homeland and its practices, the Afghan war period and its dire consequences were reminiscent of Chimamanda Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun. (Ironically, both titles have the word sun in them. I wonder if the sun played[…]

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In my own company

There comes a time in the life of a mother when all she desires is a little peace and quiet. This can arise several times in the course of her day but actually making it come to pass can take many months, or years even. I do not refer to 15 – 30 minutes to catch her breath, hear her thoughts or some her -time. It’s more in the range of stretches (big blocks) of solitude (hours, or if you’re lucky maybe days, a week or two) away from the motherhood and marriage madness that is her life outside of her career. I reached that point a few days before my birthday which was just as well. Realistically, taking days off wasn’t on the cards. Remember the cheerleaders in the house? Their sounds seemed to increase with every passing day that drew the date closer. For some erroneous reason, they envisaged the day with loads of sweets, more sweets, an outing and excitement. Fat chance! When it finally came, my birthday was a quiet affair alone with my thoughts for company in a movie theatre where I saw an action – packed, many shooting – sequences and high- speed car[…]

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August in review: Knackered

With this being my birth month, everything – and I mean, everything- was supposed to be perfect. My 9 – 5. Blogging. Workout routine. Reading. Healthy eating. All culminating into one big, celebration at the end of the month – on my birthday. Fantasy. Pipe dream. Wishful thinking. Four children put paid to most of my plans, and I found myself throwing my healthy eating resolve out the window. Snacking on almost everything I bought for the children and unashamedly drinking load of my calories. Ice cream, shakes, sodas. You name it; I downed them all. I assume half of the blame and the fact that “I’m hungry” became my middle name; knackered the only feeling I experienced. When I woke up. In the middle of the day. And collapsing onto my bed at night. Until then, I couldn’t fathom any one being that exhausted every day and night for that long. I’m wiser now. Taking care of four little humans, all pre – teen, is no walk in the park. Thumbs – up for my mum who had six of us and to every other mum with more than two offspring. You are all super mums, super wives and[…]

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Siblings speak

Tight. Strangled. “I’m almost done. Just this strangled part left.” “Look at the tight thing I want to iron!” These twin words sufficed for size. Usually the tiny, minuscule or little kind in the context of the conversation. Occasionally it could be used for food. Here it refers to clothing.   Gauge. Standard. Like the set above, it is closely related to size but in food matters only. They denote the desired quantity as dictated by the intensity (or lack thereof) of hunger pangs battering the user. “I said standard, standard! And you gave me gauge!” “Sorry.” Erring party taking the plate away to adjust appropriately. Sometimes it was difficult telling the terms apart.   Bus stop. Unlike other words, this was inferred. Occasionally it found its way into conversations but wasn’t as popular because it meant more to non-family members. Growing up, our house was smack in the middle of the city. One bus/taxi – ride brought you within walking or viewing range of it – depending on what area of town you were coming from. This meant many things to many of our friends and family. A shoe mishap, car malfunction, insufficient transport fare, a sudden attack of[…]

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