Photo Story: What strikes you in this picture, aside the Rainbow?

Some months back, I suddenly found a rainbow in the beautiful sky from my office window. I couldn’t resist the urge to capture the scenery using a colleague’s Samsung S4. Here’s what I got:

Rainbow on a beautiful Lagos afternoon

However, there was something else striking aside the rainbow; the next image captures it. It’s almost glaring! See if you can find what exactly I’m thinking about below:

What strikes you in this picture, aside the rainbow?

Please let me know what it is in the Comments section and I will announce in my next blogpost on Saturday, August 9th, 2014. I will pick two winners randomly and there’ll be surprise gifts for them! :)

Do enjoy the rest of your weekend, and have a fabulous new week.

Join the Midnight Crew 10th Year Anniversary Mass Choir – Deadline, May 21st

Deadline: Saturday 21 May 2011

The Midnight Crew

Award-winning Nigerian gospel music group, Midnight Crew Music Limited clocks 10 this year and will be celebrating this landmark feat by congregating a Mass Choir. If you love God, music and the Crew, they would greatly appreciate your company if you want to volunteer your time and talent with them on this project.

Additional Benefits for Selected Mass Choir Members:

*Choir members get to share the stage with Midnight Crew and be featured for their first and yet prestigious history making Live recording concert tagged “Praise of a Decade” in November 2011
*Guest appearances of top music ministers in Nigeria during rehearsal sessions who will share their experiences and give words of encouragement
*Insight into music ministry as well as free vocal/voice training exercises during rehearsal sessions
*Unbelievable discounts for interested members who want to learn to sing and/or play musical instruments at GPK Entertainment (Music Studio)
*Opportunity to be part of ZERAH, a more permanent mass choir of international repute and be featured in an annual Music Concert beginning from 2012.

Application Procedure for Mass Choir
*Download the Application form from this link
*Fill it appropriately and make sure your REFEREE is reachable by phone for confirmation
*When you have completed the form, please submit it at GPK Studios

GPK Studios is located at 51/52, Ijaiye Road Ogba, [the plot just before UBA], First floor of the 3rd building in the premises.

You can call the receptionist for direction on 1-8418638, 08138047238
NB: Application Closes on Saturday 21 May 2011

Guest Post: Cashless: Diary of a Lagos Commuter by Abdallah Dindi

Maryland, Lagos

As usual, I closed from work that Wednesday. I hopped down the stairs and crossed to the other side of the road. In two minutes I was in front of an ATM machine down the street. The machine spoke to me; I checked my account balance and headed straight to the bus-stop. I looked forward to a safe journey home, a modest dinner, and a refreshing sleep at night. But something happened that evening after the bus moved.

Several minutes into the journey, the bus conductor began to ask for the bus fare. This he did with neither respect nor decorum. The way he treated other passengers in front of me earned him a spiteful and condescending frown from me. Who’s this rude and impatient fellow? I thought to myself. My confident countenance was buoyed by the fact that I was so sure I had the N500 note in my pocket to pay him – the money that also held promise for a decent dinner.

Still frowning, I dipped my hand into my pocket to fetch the note. It brought out nothing save a bruised N10 note. I thrust it into the other pocket, this well was dry too. In split seconds, my frown diffused into thin air. I had started to search my brown envelope for the money when the conductor came around the second time demanding his money, his tone getting worse with less patience. By now, my frown had melted away completely and my face told of deep anxiety. I searched my pack painstakingly and my fingers probed the corners of my pocket again and again. Same story. I had to face reality. Even if my money had been stolen or misplaced, it was definitely not on this bus. How was I to convince this red-eyed conductor to accept N10 for a N30 journey?

I quickly consulted a fellow passenger next to me for help, but he shook his head and soon hopped off the bus at his stop. I moved on to the next person, a guy like me. I tapped. I nudged, and made my humble petition in low tones, like a criminal nabbed red-handed in crime. But this fellow turned a deaf ear, nay, a blind eye to my plight and request. He looked straight out of the window, his eyes fixed on a distant object like someone in a trance. Shame engulfed me now. I felt desolate, deserted and betrayed. I withdrew. I decided to rise to the occasion and do like a man; to open up to the conductor.

With a steady voice that belied my anxiety I announced to him that I had just a third of the fare and if he so wished I could alight at the next bus-stop.

“Ehn!” he barked. His temple creased in mistrust and furious furrows formed on his forehead. He refused and demanded that I pay the full fare. I gave no response, the creased N10 note still in my hand and a defiant resolve painted on my face. As we travelled further, he probably saw the futility in holding a penniless and stubborn man for common N20. Then he beckoned to his driver to halt at the nearest bus-stop. The bus stopped.

I rose from my seat thinking he would spare the last N10 I had on me. That was wishful thinking. For when I got to the door, I met a wide, red palm stretched before me. I placed the money in his hand and hopped off the bus. I hopped into the uncertainties that held sway that evening! –GN!

Photo credit: Gbenga Awomodu

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is coming to Town!

Chimamanda & I

This is not Christmas, but my heart is leaping for joy. I have yet another chance to get a second autograph from a writer I love and respect so much – Chimamanda Adichie.

I saw her physically for the first time last year at a book reading/signing event at the Silverbird Lifestyle Bookshop on Victoria Island. She had drawn a lot more crowd than had been present in previous editions of the event. All I could do was just listen and look on in awe as she read a short story from one of her participants and shared a few jokes. She left before the actual end of the programme and when I had another opportunity to learn up close, the following day, during a 90-minute interactive session with her courtesy The Future Project Creative Writing Workshop, all I did was do a video recording, get an autograph on my copy of “The thing around your neck”, and pose for a quick shot. Perhaps, I was just too shy.

This weekend, Chimamanda is coming to town again and I’m going to get my new copy of “Half of a Yellow Sun” signed whilst offering a prayer (in my mind) that I make the cut for this year’s edition of the Farafina Trust Creative Writing Workshop, which she will be coordinating alongside Kenyan author and Caine Prize Winner, Binyavanga Wainaina. Here are the event details, for those who will be in Lagos this weekend:

Date: Saturday 19 March 2011
Time: 3PM
Venue: Debonair Bookstore, 294, Herbert Macaulay Way, Sabo, Yaba, Lagos
See you there!