Friday, 5 November 2010

I Live In Lagos

While deciding on a title for this piece, I was wondering if I should write it in caps, make it bold and put an exclamation mark behind it. I guess that is how Lagos makes you feel, it makes you feel the need to emphasize and shout!, sometimes in frustration (like on days when you are stuck in the usual traffic, and you probably lied to your boss that you were having lunch at sweet sensation beside the office, while you went to get some cheap purchase at Shoprite) and other times in excitement over some mad frenzy, which is quite often in this hyperville. I think I love this crazy jungle of a city almost as much as I hate it some times. Born in Lagos, grew up in the ancient city of Benin, worked in the FCT and yet Lagos as a current abode still gives me the feeling that I just haven’t seen anything, that I have not totally grasped the essence of Naija. From the slums to the highbrow neighbourhoods you can feel the excitement, Lagos as far as I am concerned is the only place in this country where each class has as much fun and excitement as the other, for everyone there is something to keep the excitement within your pocket range. The best part for me and my love/hate relationship with this city is the fact that it gives so much drive.As a young enterprising individual, you see a lot of young people attain success with street smart/intelligence/hard work and it challenges you. In Abuja all I ever saw where rich politicians, (and we all know they don’t exactly do any work )
When I first moved in last year, I hated the distinction between the Island/mainland… those on the Island seem to be of the opinion that they are the crème de la crème of the society, which is a load of crap, as some people live in the crummiest places on the island just so they can act like they belong to the island “bigs boys/girls”. I live on the island, but trust me, It has more to do with convenience. It takes me a ten minute drive to work each day instead of leaving home at 5am, that is what keeps me going each time I think of my outrageous rent, bottom line, I am no Island big babe! There are rich and people on the Island, just as there are on the mainland.
There is something about this town-that-never-sleeps which I find quite fascinating, its scares people from less crazy towns, who swear they could never possibly live in Lagos, and it intoxicates the Lagosians, who would not even give a second thought to relocating elsewhere.

Lagos the city which knows not night
The city which makes others tremble in fear and fascination
The city you hate to love and love to hate
Lagos the one city that has it all

I live in Lagos, and the truth is, hate it or love it, this is one place in Nigeria you just can’t ignore.

Eko oni baje!