Friday, September 5, 2008

Welcome to Zamfara State: Farming Is Our Pride

Oh Lord! Time’s up for me again.
My two-week sick leave from ZM has sadly come to an end (and I didn’t even get the chance to put on some weight :-( ) I’ll be going back on Sunday, and 5 days later I’m going to win the battle over tears as I wave my roommates g’bye. (Heck, maybe I’ll remember all the not-so-nice things they said/did and then scream “good riddance” as I push them out… fat chance). Another 5 days from then, I shall wave my new flat mates hello. Ahhh… I wonder what they’ll be like. Will they gel with us the way we did with the outgoing batch? Will they like singing (like some two flatmates I know)? And wait till they see our huge and famous Kotorkoshi rock.

In any case, they are very welcome.

I realise that I haven’t described Zamfara State in this blog at all, which is very bad of me. Regardless of how the State tries to make people see that it’s a peaceful, live-able place, eyes and mouths still pop wide open before me as I tell them I'm serving there (involuntary movement, I think they call it in Biology). It therefore makes sense that I should take some time out of my {cough} busy schedule to describe the place to you... but the problem is, I live the famous “triangular life”- class to lodge to church. Sight-seeing for me is a trip to the capital, Gusau, when I want to buy food, make my hair, browse, etc. I wish I could say that this very interesting lifestyle of mine is going to change as soon as I get back but kai, no need. I’ll be sure to ferret out the useful, trivial, “insider” information about ZM, though. For instance, under the “trivial” category, I bet you didn’t know that Zamfara State takes its slogan, Farming Is Our Pride, to heart by planting okro as well as millet on the median (I mean that middle strip of road where the street lamps are situated) of some roads. Mm-hm. And I’ll probably be fapping information from too.

Well I have to go now. It’ll probably be a while before my next post. Discovering new blogs has been fun. Keep living, laughing, learning and loving.


Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Wonderful Women

Being sick has an upside: you get to lie back and do nothing while the medication does its work. In other words, time to loaf. Well I’ve been having enough loafing time lately. Mostly I just lie back and think of all the series I’ve enjoyed so much (like Grey’s Anatomy, Wetin Dey, That 70s Show, Hell’s Kitchen, The X-Files, Star Trek, CSI, Las Vegas… ) but today I got to thinking about the women I admire. It is necessary to have people to look up to, people to think about. It keeps us focused on what we really want in life- If she was in my position, how would she handle this/react?/Would she do this? etc. You are spared a lot of heartache and indecision as a result. So here are a few of the amazing women I thought of. (I know the list will keep growing with time)-

Since I was thinking of series, I started with Melina Kanakaredes, whose composure I really trip for in CSI:NY.(And she is beautiful- I always rave about her curly hair and Greek features).

Then I proceeded to Ruth Benamaisia, who used to anchor NTA Newsline. Once upon a time, any kind of News used to bore me to tears; even the spicy, tales-of-the-unexpected Newsline. (I’d prefer to watch Buffy but nooo, the parents would not hear it- they said the country would be on fire and we wouldn’t know it- which was a valid point, but still…) Well, Ruth’s very correct English and intriguing mix of confidence and warmth always kept me quite attentive and always smiling happily. Yah, I’m smiling as I remember her, in fact.

Thinking about Ruth naturally led me to Kehinde Young-Harry, (who has been absent from Newsline for some time, I’m sad to discover), with her easy personality and equally fab. way of talking. She strikes me as someone that’s easy to talk with, (that’s what I mean when I say ‘easy personality’). Usually, when I think of her I think of Ruth too; both are classy, respectable women with a cool sense of humour.

My next stop was New Dawn’s trendy, “funky” presenter, Funmi Iyanda. I need not mention how great she looks and dresses. These two killer combinations would have made watching New Dawn a bit painful had it not been for her wonderful down-to-earth, refreshingly honest, expressive, intellectual, humorous nature (Chai, I’m beginning to sound like a sycophant, so enough said).

Adesuwa of Today’s Woman is yet another inspiring woman. She’s focused, obviously hard working, and tackles issues so deftly. Wow. Yah, she’s level-headed too.

When I realised that most of the women I admire are tv personalities, I decided to come closer to home: Anne Abok, director/producer, editor, script-writer of Media Village(YWAM), Bassa LGA., Plateau State. Oh mehn… how do I start? How do I do her justice? I can’t. She is a-m-a-z-i-n-g. Very passionate about her work, and about people in general. Her lovely laugh, warm soul and amazing creativity is really awesome. (On more than one occasion, while she was giving us the basics of video production, the guy sitting next to me would whisper, “Shey she’s very beautiful?” “Mm-hm, definitely” )

Soon to be added to the roll is Sebari Diete-Spiff, director of Wetin Dey, Sitanda and other productions. (I say ‘soon to be added’ because I don’t know much about her yet- only precious little from a brief interview in True Love mag BUT! Like the feeling you get when you hear the beginning of a song for the very first time and are absolutely sure you’re going to love it, I just know that she’s going to be in my ‘hall of fame’).

Of course I will never forget Aunt Regina, of the Navigators Minna, Nigeria. Oh my! Warmth personified! Always willing to give you a warm hug, rub your back, sit down and chat with you… She is a devoted follower of Christ, wife, mother, friend… name it. Insightful and witty (you should hear some of the conversations she has with her daughters), she is also a fun, creative cook (I saw butternuts for the first time in my life in her kitchen).

And you know there’s Mama… the woman that permitted this young lady to live, the one who taught (er… is teaching) her daughter to be as true, hard working and independent as she is (When I remember Destiny’s Child’s… Destiny Child’s… Destiny Child… (what-ever) When I remember their cool Independent Woman song, I no longer think strictly of a classy chic riding a black SLK/Merc/Jeep/? with a fantastic condo and killer wardrobe. I think of Mama- self-sacrificing, seriously multi-tasking (on a bad day she calls herself jaki -donkey- but I think SuperWoman sounds better :-))

So…this is the list for now.No way my life is going to be mediocre with such wonderful women to think about. Yah… they are my Women of Substance.