All posts by Deronk

About Deronk

A God freak who likes to share her opinion about issues. I try to see everything positive about a situation. I am melancholic and though a Science person by nature and profession(a Computer Scientist actually), I love arts and music.... especially music.... I like to write also.... Cooking..... Organizing events.... and bless my soul.... Sleeping... I love WIRES.... and like looking up gadgets. If I have the money, I buy them. Am not your typical female.. Some say I am weird, strange and so on. Let moi stop here.

Every project has an end date

April 14, 2014

I resumed at the firm.

April 17, 2014

I was assigned to a project. A 12 months project. Expected end date: July 2015.

June – August 2014

Project stalled.

August 2014

Project has been extended to October 2015. Go-Live date: October 5, 2015. I almost died. 2015 seemed so far especially for someone as restless as I am. Not to now talk of October. Laun laun?!!! E fe pa mi ni?

September 2014

Took a 2 weeks break to work on another project.

December 2014

I was mandated to take PMP at work. I had planned to take it at the end of the project, one, to get enough hours and two, I knew I might not have the time to read. I had listed taking the exam as part of my goals for the FY.

Anyways, the mail came from my manager  December 18. Ensure you take the exam Q1, 2015. Unfailingly.

January 2015

I found a centre to do my PMP training.

Had a new in-charge who loved to close late (even if the work could be continued the next day and the deliverable wasn’t urgent). He wants to make Manager so he is ready to die there.

February 2015

Finished PMP training. Now to register for the exam. Wahala. Centre kept messing up.

March 2015

Finally got registered for the exam. All along, I didn’t have the “time” to read. I will promise to read when I get home but when you have been at work since 8:30/ 9am and just getting home at 11pm, sure reading will be the last thing on your mind.

I will read on weekends. Weekends became sleep/ catch-up days. May is coming!!!!

April 2015

Dawns on me kinda that May was just next tomorrow literally. Start to read even in my very tired state. Hoping to take a week off at the end of April to “read”. Exam is May 2

May 2015

I had not gone on vacation for the FY. We were informed no vacays till project is over. At this point, I was so sure I won’t survive. I have been on an implementation job before but it wasn’t this tasking… and long. Suddenly, October felt like a very long time away.

Week off in April/ May became 2 days off. Had to go to work the Monday I was meant to start my leave. Took Tuesday off. Wednesday and Thursday I spent in training. Friday was a public holiday.

Even when I knew that though I had read and all, I didn’t feel as prepared as I should be. My boss is begging me to please pass and is telling me he knows I don’t have the time to read. I am like…..

Then May 1 came. Failed all the tests I did. I couldn’t even cry. Just shut down my laptop, closed all books and went to bed. Woke up May 2 and headed for the centre. At that point, I was like Esther – “If I fail, I fail”.

May 10, got a mail. I passed. Unbelievable!!!!

June 2015

The 24/7 work begins. Prior to this I worked weekends but minimally. I had time to still go out, see people, go for weddings and all. Then June 2015 came. 8am – 11pm or more work. Work on Saturdays and Sundays. No breaks. No vacations. No church. No parties. No hanging out. Nada. Zero social life. Social life I was trying to build.

Public holidays became regular work days.

QP was scheduled for July 2 – 4. I was working 3 projects at the same time – day job, QP and wedding planning.

July 2015

A cousin’s wedding is coming up. How will I get time off? Fortunately, the wedding dates fell on a public holiday weekend. Was able to get one day off – Saturday. Funny innit? I have to ask for Saturday off.

I went to South-South for the first time – yayyest. PH.

Got off the plane from PH and met my church Pastor at the airport. Monday morning.

Question: where are you coming from?

Pays to be a good girl *lol*

August 2015

Mehn, the hustle is real. At this point, I was too sure I will collapse one day. Multivitamins became my daily tonic. Work + my sister’s wedding. I was looking forward to October.

Went to church for the first time in almost 2 months. I couldn’t even wake up early to make Fresh Anointing Service or Workers’ prayer meeting. I was drifting.

Sis’ wedding came and I was back at work immediately. I was tired. Physically, mentally and emotionally. Drained!!!

Yet people saw me and said I looked good. And am thinking “abi these people are blind ni”? It could only have been God. I was totally off make-up. Biko who had time to draw eye brows? I really couldn’t be bothered about how I looked frankly.

iPhone was stolen. I couldn’t even shout. God bless the person that stole it. I shall not use my mouth to curse him/ her.

September 2015

Def, no more church.

Cousin’s wedding. Started begging for day off (including Saturday o).

Go-live planning ongoing.

We are seriously praying. We all know what happens to the best laid plans…. We are positive but still

October 1, 2015

Party dey for church, I no fit go. Managed to go see Captive. Sleeping at work begins

October 2, 2015

Work continues. Mehn we are just hanging in there. Almost there.

October 3, 2015

Go decision is taken

October 4, 2015

We are live mehn. See praise and worship. Come and hear prayers.

October 5, 2015

Application is LIVE. Day 1 operations nationwide. Minimal issues. Way less issues that we thought.

I think I am ready to have my life back now!!!

 

 

Of Cyberbullying, Hating and Social Media

This is one post I have planned to write for a while now because I don’t just get this “Haters”, “You have a differing opinion therefore you must be a hater” concept all over social media. And at this stage … the anger I feel most times when I see such comments online, I get tempted to just disappear from all social media. Maybe fortunately I have  always had my pages – Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Tumblr e.t.c private, and as I am not a Celeb, such comments  don’t get to my page but come on… these other guys are human too o!!!!

What is cyberbullying? – “the use of electronic communication to bully a person, typically by sending messages of an intimidating or threatening nature”; “the act of harassing someone online by sending or posting mean messages, usually anonymously”.

I do a lot of sniffing and looking and visiting social media and other new media channels and it is utterly disgusting the kind of comments people post a lot of times forming Anonymous or using fictitious names and they feel fulfilled typing such and posting it.

Take a look at half of the comments on say a Bellanaija or a “celeb’s” IG. You see people dissipating so much energy just because person B has a different view.  A year or 2 ago, such people were labeled haters and we all moved on. Now you see comments upon comments and replies upon replies (insults and name calling) just to “correct the person” or ensure the person “aligns” with your view. Like I have no right to my opinions anymore.

Truly some comments can be read and interpreted as “bad belle” comments but I really don’t see who made the other person the judge hence you have to correct to the extent you begin to insult. If you think you must correct an impression or opinion, there are more civilized ways of doing it that won’t degenerate into insults and name calling.

I think the earlier we realize that everybody has a right to their opinions the better.

  1. If someone has a different opinion it necessarily doesn’t mean they are hating.
  2. If you think the person’s opinion is wrong, you don’t need to resort to “bullying”. You can correct people without bullying or insulting them
  3. It is not every opinion/ view/ comment you have you must post. So I see a bride on her wedding day and I think the MUA didn’t do a good job, there is no law that says I must post a comment that the MUA did a horrible job or the bride looked ugly. Keep such comments to yourself
  4. Learn to respect other people’s feelings and look at things from different angles. Thou shall not be stuck up and think you are always right

There are days I wish we are in a Turkey or China where usage of new media is controlled.

Happy Sunday

5 Shades of Randoms

  1. So I am this close to having a friend never talk to me again (well maybe for a while) because…… I will be missing her wedding. And I was warned in advance. After I missed another Uni friend’s wedding two years ago. No bi my fault. I had to pull outta helping her plan and being on a train when it was obvious I won’t be able to get days off twice in a month and me there thinking “ok, I will go to Ib on Saturday morning”. Well as we don enter critical phase of the job am on, I practically had to “apply” to take 3 days off from my vacation for my sisi’s wedding. And I keep hearing “ah Debola, you want to abandon me at the critical moment”; “can we renegotiate your days off?” “Debola, I am drowning in work o” and am just giving my boss my bitch resting face. Wowzers!!!!! Anyways I am wondering when is the right time to tell her I won’t be coming. So I can get the silent treatment as soon as possible. Shoulda tell her in advance I won’t be making the wedding i.e. tell her today/ tomorrow or buzz her on Saturday morning to tell her (bad idea right)? Or just wait till after the wedding say in like 2 weeks to apologize?
  2. It is a few days to my sisi’s wedding #gunsblazing #readytoparty. And for the first time, I plan a wedding all the way. No more planning bits and pieces of a wedding i.e. draw budget, get some vendors, sort out bridal train ish. Feels good but mehn I am running on reserve now – planning a wedding with my 8 – 5 or is it 8 – 9 these days e no easy. And I have had 2 people tell me in the last few weeks to quit my job and just face planning parties. What do ya think?
  3. Hmmm, this my current engagement ehn…. Anyways, thanks to the job I can tick Rivers State (Port-Harcourt precisely) off the list of states to visit in Nigeria. Had a lovely stay. Didn’t go out – thanks to the many “ma jade o” – don’t go out o, so they don’t kidnap you. Like they will see all the Oil & Gas workers and Bankers and the Jidenna complexion type of people and it is now me they will kidnap. Tah!!!. It was fun sha. Trying to sneak myself into a job to start in PH soon. Tayad of this Lagos life me thinks. The “hotel” I stayed def had some place they raise snail. Gosh!!! Give me plantain and snail sauce and they bring 6 pieces of plantain and 6 big pieces of snail. I am just staring at the snails like kilode??
  4. My hair journey. Excited much at the progress I have made so far. I have actually done more braids in the last 7 months than fixing and it is just like magic. Like my hair doesn’t break. Anddddd wait for it…. I dyed my whole head and my hair aint falling off.
  5. Any more gists? Ok bestie 1 of 2 got engaged during the time I have been off. So my first trip to the East is so so not far anymore. And my george wearing days are about to begin. Hehehe

Yeah tis that #wedding phase of one’s life when you have to attend weddings left, right and centre. I shall enjoy it!!!!

Haha, I see November.

Enjoy your night peoples!!!!

Dear husband

Dear husband, please get Timi Dakolo to perform Iyawo Mi for our first dance.
While you are at it, get Obiwon to perform Obi Mu.
I mean I want both of them live.
No DJ, no band forming they can sing better than Timi or Obiwon.

Thank you.

Frankly I did not intend to post but for the last few days I go to bed with Iyawo Mi playing in my head and then I remember how I used to love Obi Mu.

Maybe the many weddings I have in the next 3 months have me all emosh.

Sat here at the gas station trying to get fuel with both songs on repeat. Not my fault.

Happy new year people. Hopefully I won’t be away for so long again

xoxo
Tada

Bestest Month of the Year

Yipeeeesssss. It is that month of the year again!!!!

I guess by now everybody knows how I get excited once it is November. So indulge me.

Before I continue, happy birthday in advance to my November sisters – Angelsbeauty and Tee. May God continue to bless and keep you. May His face continue to shine on you. Many many many more years in the land of the living. Your husbands shall delight in you always :). And your children shall arise and call you blessed (yes storing in advance). Do have as much fun as you can on the 16th and 18th.

So…. In about 23 days, I will be a few… ok three years short of 30 and I spent most of the weekend thinking about my pre-30 plans. What I had planned to achieve and where I am at the moment – career, family and all and I find myself not even up to 50%. So I have decided things mustu change this coming year. Starting with yearly holidays, getting a double next year, plans are already shaping up. Scratch any exam. Money saved from now on is going into – holiday, business and investments. When the returns start to roll in, we do that MBA we have been planning for. Mehn I have been living a very boring life. Time to get this babe rolling.

I usually woulda done a say 30 days put up a new pic on BBM or like last year do a Tuesday Tuesday post. Bet mehn this year… I think I am getting too old for all that.

Moving on. Since Mr. SF has found this blog, I def aint resting again. 26 views in one day? Sure you thought I won’t know. *smh*. This is your shout out.

Hmmmmm, hair stories. Did this Ghana weaving (I don’t learn right?) that has damaged the small hair we are trying to grow. Got tired of fixing and thought I should have a new look. Well, the result was bad but not so bad sha. Thank God. Now I am seriously considering doing wigs. I need my hair to breathe. That said, a certain mamacita aka sexy mama aka JA owes me wigs right? You know yourself…. God is seriously watching you

Something about this season and weddings. Can’t wait to put on my dancing shoes and rock ’em parties. Some pre-birthday weekend turnup!!!!!

Btw, I think I am the only one that still watches #Scandal.

Tada

xoxo

Eye of the tiger….

Absolutely random title. But as I am sat here listening to  Katy Perry’s Roar.. I never used to be a fan but for some reason, this song sits well with me. And her antics in the making of the video? Hilarious.

Anyways, 39 days gone of 100 days and I don’t have much updates.

1. Watched 3 out of 4 movies I planned to watch. So Expendables, Lucy and God’s not dead (amazing movie)

2. Initiated the process of hooking up with an old friend. He called out of the blues. Like he knew I had a “bucket list”. Lol

3. Started my Shakespeare reading. Not finished even 1 book sha

4. Learnt only 1 new word. *sigh*. And guess the word – flapdoodle. *smh*

5. Ha ha, blind date. I apparently don’t have friends willing to hook me up. Except 1 who started the convo and “bailed”

6. Def not started reading for my exam

7. And everything else is on 0%. Not even initiated yet sef. That bad

Hope the next 61 days will be better.

I am a bit (ok, I lie). I am very much an old soul. I wish a lot of times I was born in the 50s/60s. Don’t ask me why, cuz me sef I don’t know. So I always “collect” songs from way back (if songs written even in the 90s count). Hence I do love to watch a lot of music shows. The Voice being number 1. And the end of every show means I am downloading songs…. Which kain life be this? So this is the song for the week

Oh and I as I have been carrying last on Sam Smith, I am doing the needful. How come nobody ever told me?

In other news, Scandal is berk!!!! Olivia is BACK!! Excited much….

Busy week and month ahead… So I won’t be on here much… Don’t miss me…

Funniest quote I have seen in a while..

When your ex texts you after months “Hey, what’s up”… Not today Satan, not today

 

 

 

 

Getting to that point where….

To take a decision: career/job/ambition versus family.

It is hard being a woman. Now I am going to rant a bit. Please forgive me

I had this conversation with a newly married friend. She was kinda asking for advice on what to do. It is a question/decision I have been quizzed about in the past. However, it always came from unmarried friends. Now someone who is in the “situation” is asking. I was going to give the usual answer I would give. And then it occurred to me:

  1. She sure has thought about all of that
  2. She really does know where it pinches so the usual answer won’t work

So we spent the rest of the conversation trying to weigh different options.

Now I grew up (as am sure most people did) with mothers who weren’t overtly ambitious. They believe(d) in a woman’s place being in the house and as such, well the plan wasn’t to make so much more or be the oga madam at work or something. Most women were content with having a job that allowed them time for their children.

Not so these days. We have women out early and back late at night. Boardroom warriors. On the road, on the move women. Now the big question. How do you juggle being the woman at home and not sacrificing your career/job/ambition. I know and I can tell stories of friends/aunties who took the no job, stay at home route. I also know of those who took maybe a pay cut, another job or took time out at some point and are back in the corporate world and gradually climbing the ladder at a time some might consider late (after all if they stayed on, they might have risen faster). I know of those who decided to run their own businesses just so they can have that additional time it affords to be with their family. I know of those whose husbands at some point had to ask them to leave their jobs and start a business/stay home when for weeks on end they don’t even see. I also know someone who confessed that at a point (in the being a career woman ish), she was “meeting” her husband at the airport in all sorts of countries – she arrives at a country to depart for another and her husband is doing same. She had to decide at that point what had to go.

A question my friend asked (which I have asked wella), how do you be the wife and mother and still be ambitious without the feeling that being the wife and mother has hindered your progress? Like I have plans. I know what and where I want to be in the next 5 – 10 years. I still wanna do my MBA (yes MSc aint enough). I know where I want to be position/grade wise. However, won’t being a wife and mother hinder that? For instance, I am doing my MBA, I have 2 kids and am working an 8am – 5pm job. How do you marry that? How do you cope?

I recall a conversation with some managers at work (guys) and one tells the others how women perform better at interviews and all. They all agreed during interviews, women did better than their male counterparts. Then one goes “but when they get in, within 2 years, they talk about getting married. Next comes, I am leaving the job – it is too stressful. Or I am relocating. Or they ask for time and time and more time away from the job”. He said that that point he begins to wish men did better. At least he won’t have the issues as above. Another who met his wife within the firm concurred. She had to leave the firm because it was getting stressful being a wife and a career woman. She left paid employment completely, had her kids, stayed a few more years (but attended courses and did exams) and is back working. However, she is getting delusional. Feels she had been out too long and isn’t getting the right job/position to match her qualifications and experience.

That is my (and my friend’s fear). I fear getting to the point where I am mad (at myself or someone else) because I feel I sacrificed job/career/ambition for my family. We can argue family comes first (in the scheme of things, I will choose my family over ambition/job/career) but especially for restless souls like me, for people who thirst and thrive working in the corporate world, who live for working in the organizations, what do you do? I would hate to be the woman grumbling and unhappy with where she is career wise in 10 years.

My friend talks about not having too much time to even cook during the week. When you constantly get home at 9pm/10pm. Once again we analyzed. Ok, what if you cook over the weekend. That leaves you with:

  1. Not eating fresh meals. Microwave and PHCN/Gen must always work/light must always dey
  2. Eating the same meals – rice, swallow or something. Or if you try to spice it up, you make boli in the oven and eat with the efo you made on Saturday right? So what happens to those recipes you saw on BBC Food, MasterChef, Come dine with me, Food Network e.t.c. You try them out on Saturday/Sunday abi. Let’s not forget you would spend Saturday/Sunday trying to prepare the meals for the next week
  3. Your children grow up eating the rice meals. Full carbs diet. Maybe learn to bake at some summer school. But never get to really practice what they have been taught
  4. And the cycle continues

Or do we add the lack of bonding time with the boo? You are back late, he is back late. You are tired, he is tired. You are trying to put something that won’t take time together so you can put your legs up and sleep. He is trying to even in his tired state, he wants to have sex. All you are thinking of is sleep. Ok sex during weekends right. No talking, no gisting, no gbeborun-ing and all. Then the children come. And you barely talk to each other (asides it is time to buy something, pay school fees, and other occasional small gist). Years after the children are off to school and it is just both of you. With nothing to talk/gist about.

We can argue that feminism has a lot to do with it. After all in the olden days, our mothers were content with staying at home and the men bringing the money. I am not a feminist and I still believe in a woman’s place being at home. However, I don’t think if I was born in the 1800s or so, I would have been content with sitting at home idle. I am restless like that.

It is a win-lose situation innit?

100 days of…. Or 101….

It is my birthday in about a hundred and six days. Yes… it is that time of the year again… I guess everybody knows how I feel about my birthday… So!!!!!

As usual, I do a 30 days ish either posting pictures, things to be grateful for, things I will like to have/own and all. This year, I choose to do a 100 days ish (God helping me).

So what is in my “bucket list” for the next 100 days (starting on the 18th)? Even worse I have been forced to go on vacation before I planned to. And it starts on the 18th….

100 days of just having fun! 100 days of being less rigid, open and more flexible and relaxed! 100 days of conquering my fears! 100 days of letting my hair down

  • By the time the 100 days is up, I will like to have seen at least 4 movies. Nothing’s gonna hold me back – movie partner or not
  • Reconnect with at least 5 old friends and make 2 new friends
  • Learn at least 20 new words
  • Read at least 2 Shakespeare books – top on the list are Macbeth and Merchant of Venice
  • Read Pride and Prejudice again (and maybe Tess of the d’Urbervilles) and re-watch all the BBC adaptations
  • Read a book or 2 on leadership and business. It has been a while I have read any book. Or visited Laterna
  • Finish C.S Lewis’ The Four Loves
  • Start to exercise again
  • Maybe learn to swim
  • Go on a blind date. As my friends will not let me rest on this man matter, maybe I should just allow one of them – the most persistent (as she is even chatting me now sef on this matter – not replying) allow me breathe
  • Overcome my fear of heights and water
  • Study my Bible more and spend more time praying
  • I was going to add “get to level xxx on Candy Crush” here but………….
  • Start to study for my exam (and hopefully register)
  • Do a 100 days fast? Some people will “die” on my behalf
  • Quit doodling. I wish

I would have loved to do a “100 days of no weaves – just me and my hair” BET, emi mi o gbe. My hair never reach that stage

I think I have enough activities to last 100 days right?

With bff 2 moving to Canada and another friend going to school there, my holiday destination seems to be increasing – Fiji Island or Maldives (or maybe both), Cyprus and now Canada. I still reserve the Bahamas for a trip with the man. Hehehe

That said, I did try BBQ and Cravings on Sunday. If you live in the Lekki – Argungi area, and you haven’t tried it, you are on a long thing o. Seriously!!! BBQ and Cravings is opposite House on the Rock. House on the Rock is at the 4th roundabout. Not far from the Conoil Station. Thank me later!!! And send some ribs and gizzard my way.

xoxo

Official Video is OUT

If you haven’t heard about Mosa, now you know.

Stay Ebola free

What is in a girl’s bag?

I have never had cause to worry when someone wants to check my handbag. Like kini big deal? What is in it that has never been seen right? I have never given much thought to someone looking into my bag. Till today. A colleague dropped her car key with me and nonchalantly, I dropped it in my bag. Fast forward to later in the day. I was at lunch and she needed to move her car. Rather than “disturb” me, she goes to my bag and picks her key. I return from lunch and she tells me she’s picked her key. Three seconds after, I start to “worry” and quickly picked my bag to see what I had in it. The usuals – perfumes, deodorant, lipsticks, lip glosses, biros and pencils, comb, brush, gum, ID card, wallet, hand lotion, hand sanitizer, dental floss, oil control tissue, handkerchief, earpiece, phone charger, pashminas, bank tokens, complimentary card holder and cheque book.

Then I say to myself “you have nothing to fear”. I sat there thinking “when did I get to the worrying when someone looks into my bag” stage? Like it has never happened. Plus when did I start to carry my “whole room” in my bag? Short of seeing panties, bra, tooth paste/brush or dresses in the bag, I can do a sleep over anywhere. And the bag na one small bag. No wonder it always feels heavy. Help please, is this what a typical girl’s bag contains? Pray please, when did I get here?

That said, I have no idea why I feel like a cheat because I use 2 salons. I mean old salon is cheaper, doesn’t fix my hair as good as new salon but I have been using them for so long it just feels awful letting go. And every time I go to old salon, I feel like I am cheating on new salon and vice versa. I try to do a 2 weeks ish. So fix at both every month but it is becoming a chore and weighing on my conscience. Someone please help!!! How do ladies/guys cheat on their partners? It is so hard…..

Why do people always assume a girl has what she has because a man is funding it? I really don’t get it. I can’t buy stuff myself or what?

I am every inch an impulsive buyer – especially when it comes to cupcakes and shoes. I mean there is no better way to say sorry, I love you, whatever you wanna say than sending cupcakes. The kind of life cupcakes give me ehn. Even me I cannot explain. I am sat at work now and seriously craving cupcakes. I think my cupcakes person is out of town. I hope she is able to hook me up with something sha. I only do cupcakes from one person, though though I hear there is a new place (in Victoria Island) that their cupcakes is heaven. I should try them right? Ha ha, I should try BBQ and Cravings too. Anybody been there? Reviews please.

Shoes… where do I start? Before the thing becomes an idol in my life, I have decided to start to give out shoes. Abi? What do ya think?

The Expendables 3 is out. And there is no Chuck Norris or Bruce Willis…. I don’t get. God is watching Sylvester Stallone in 3D. I remember seeing 2 with my cousin and less than half way through, she had dozed off in the cinema. Maybe doze off is a mild word. She was actually really sleeping. *smh*. Time to find a proper cinema partner.

All is well in the world again. Football season is BACK!!!!

Anyways good people, have a lovely weekend before I continue ranting….

N.B: Birthday countdown begins end of the month. Hint hint, there should be a give-away in November, God willing. So brace yourself!!!! *winks*

xoxo

 

10 years on

This day 10 years ago (don’t feel like 10 years at all), I left/graduated/passed out of Secondary School. It is freaking surreal. Like I can’t believe I have been out of Secondary School 10 years. I think about my “dreams” and what I planned to do within the 10 years. Yes, I had the 10 year plan post-Secondary School and another 10 years post University plan. Tracking my life since then, I am about 90% done with my post-Secondary School plan. Commendable yeah.

I believe my ex-classmates had a reunion on Saturday 5th. It woulda been great seeing people again all in one room. Asides the occasional running into ex-classmates at the supermarket, mall, at work, airports. Oh well….

Today however, I choose to not only remember the good, the bad, the ugly, the times I cried, the times I laughed, those who made my stay the best, those who peppered me (I forgive you). I choose to remember 2 people who my Secondary School story won’t be complete without.

A. We were classmates all of Primary School and Secondary School. Primary School and the first half of Secondary School because her surname came before mine (my first name is also a letter more than hers). So we were stuck in the same class. I stumbled on one of our Primary School Valedictory service picture and we were sitting next to each other (I guess we were “arranged” based on our last names). Second half of Secondary School, we had no reason to be classmates. The determining factor to be in my class was the choice of Technical Drawing in addition to Physics, Chemistry, Biology and Further Maths. Anybody not offering that subject (at all) was placed in another class. However, E.A had other ideas. We were 3 girls offering all 5 subjects. With over 30 guys. I guess E.A felt the need to add some more girls and gave us 6 more – 3 offering Agriculture and 3 offering Food and Nuts (as we called it).

A, my classmate till ovarian cancer took her away. A, the one who made me ever google the word “cancer”. A, the one battled cancer and won. She might have lost the battle physically BUT her experience opened the eyes of many.

We took ill about the same time (3rd term SS2 – exam period) and while I missed a few exams and returned to school, she never came back. Battled it, broke all myths – oh ovarian cancer affects older women. She was but 16. Oh ovarian cancer befell promiscuous women – she was a virgin. And the list goes on. She knew she was gonna die. Yet every single exam we had in SS3, she took. Her birthday was the 20th of June. She did say if she survived past her birthday, she was going to live. She died on the 4th, a few days after we wrote our last SSCE paper, almost a year after she was diagnosed. She knew she would die that day. A, forever in our hearts.

I choose to remember Y. We became quite close JSS2 and stayed on friends till the very end. He was loud. Really loud and could be annoying. I typically stay away from loud people. I can count how many loud friends I had and we are not close. Yet somehow, we managed to be friends. He would usually give me boarder boys’ gist and I kinda always knew who next was going to be on my case through him (even if he never said it explicitly, it kinda always slipped). It was Y who took it upon himself to save me “the shame of going to Grad Class Dinner dateless”. The moment it was obvious to all I wasn’t going with O, he was number 1 out of 12 who approached me. And the remaining 11? I knew they were coming to ask before they did. I however shenked (is that even the spelling?) him and went with someone else.

He ended up going dateless YET he remained friends. Secondary School over. Our only means of communication was Yahoo messenger. I was in Nigeria. He was in the UK and later US. 19 short months after, he was no more. We still chatted February 12 and promised to meet again on the 15th. Headed to the cybercafé on 15th, 2 hours after agreed time with no response, I was about logging out when a close friend who was also in US sent a message. Y was no more. He was last seen outside on the 12th. By 14th when his flat mates hadn’t seen him leave his apartment for 2 days, they broke in. Met his lifeless body. No one knows what happened (as a Muslim he was buried immediately). I had the unfortunate task of breaking the news to other friends.

He was the joker. The one who would make you laugh no matter what. I still imagine he would come out one day and say he was pranking us. Y, my loud friend, I choose to remember you today and always – 8 years on.

I choose to remember friends who have stayed friends for at least 10 years. Some, more than 10. T, Ik and If for more than 20 years. You guys rock. O (16 years), E, O, S (the only guy in the team) and W (10 years) aint no joke. They say 20 friends cannot be friends for 20 years. True, so maybe that is why my “clique” is smaller. We might not see or chat as often as we used to. But I remember you all every day.

On to the next 10 years…. God willing….