Monthly Archives: October 2014
It’s been a really long time! I hope everyone is well. I decided to blog about my experiences on my not so recent trip to Nigeria, Enjoy!
I was lucky (and very happy) to visit Nigeria in September 2014 after 6 years. It was a family trip for the final burial of my grandmother 😦 which means party 🙂
We departed from London City Airport, flying with KLM and stopping over in Denmark before going to Nigeria. In my experience of travelling to Nigeria, our suitcases are always filled to the brim with gifts and things for family back home and this trip was no different. We started off at the airport by weighing and repacking luggage to make sure we were within the limits
After arriving in Denmark, while waiting for our connecting flight, we were all given this letter
The hysteria in the UK of Ebola had me fairly worried already but the letter made things just a little bit worse. I felt a little bit prepared with alcohol gel and my plan was to limit human contact with people as much as possible (a bit unrealistic I will admit)
After catching the flight, we safely arrived in Nigeria at about 10pm at night. As the plane touched the ground the passengers of the plane all burst into applause. I’m yet to experience this happening when travelling anywhere else. The feeling of being back IN Nigeria after such a long time was an indescribable feeling of joy.
After stepping out and having the Ebola temperature checks we stepped into the main airport area to see a very different airport to the last time I visited.
After coming out of the airport, we saw my uncles (my mum’s twin brother and my nephew who is referred to as my uncle). After the joy of the six year long reunion, we were faced with a rough walk to the car park in quite a bit of darkness with no street lights (o dear) and a very bumpy potehole filled road. Walking in the dark to the car park was the wake up call/welcome to Nigeria and admitted some of my excitement quickly dissipated.
On reaching the car park, we now faced another 40 or so minutes of edging the car forward and lots of car honking/shouting /
cursing. Nigerian driving is a feat! It takes alot of speed, aggression, prayer (and a few bribes). If you can drive in Nigeria, you can LITERALLY drive anywhere.
After leaving the car park, we sped off home, literally doing speeds of 70mph and over. As the drive continued, I started to recognise some places (cue nostalgia). And then finally we arrived in our area in Lagos state. Everything looked very much the same but some of the roads were in a rough way, given that it was the rainy season. Keep in mind, being out really late when in Nigeria (for me) dooesnt usually happen so in my mind, I was hoping to get in asap.
Finally, we got into the house. It looked the same but a lot of renovation had happened since the last time we had visited (in a good way).
Today was really important because it was a birthday party! We went to church first then headed to the party.
It was great fun, there was a traditional style of dancing with several young ladies and guys. Admittedly they were doing some dare devil stunts eg standing on each other’s head and the likes but it was good overall. Then it started raining. Rain during the Nigerian rainy season is like nothing else I’ve seen. It pours! So as the rain kept coming down, the grass and mud started soaking up water and rising up. So I was basically sat underneath a canopy with my feet under water.
Even though it was raining, the traditional dancers carried on. Until one of the canopies collapsed on the guests = party over.
That was by far the most intense experience of rain I’ve had. I then had to walk back to our car in a pretty deep puddle and being rained on at the same time. Lovely!
This was the day before the actual reason we had come. The plan for the party was to cater for quite a number of people, which requires a lot of food. So it was agreed to buy a cow! Caterers were also hired to cook all the needed food. This was the first time I ever saw anything being killed and It is an experience I will never forget! I’m not a particular fan of animals but I will admit I felt rather sad as I watched the cow die.
Once the cow had died, the butchers proceeded to clean the cow and cut it up. It was admittedly a graphic thing to watch. No part of the cow was wasted. The meat, innards, skin, tail and feet were all used. The head and feet were the only bits that weren’t used. The caterers stayed up all night cooking
Hope you’ve enjoyed my experience so far, part two will soon follow
Until Next time