Wednesday, November 19, 2008

So I am an honest blogger...

I got this in my Inbox this morning.

Very important piece of Info for married couples and people in serious relationships.

It spoke to me, I hope it does to you too.

Check it out!

Cultivating a Beautiful Marriage

Micca Monda Campbell

Have you ever secretly compared your husband to another man or your wife to another woman? Perhaps you've wished they were more thoughtful, spiritual, or a better dresser like "so-and-so."
If so, let me reassure you. The grass is not greener on the other side. Trust me. That man you've got your eye on doesn't clip his toenails either. Nor does that woman rub her man's feet while feeding him grapes after a long day of work.
Your spouse and mine are the people we fell in love with. No, they're not perfect. Maybe all they need is a bit of tender loving care. Instead of comparing and complaining about our partner's shortcomings, you and I should try nurturing our mates lovingly in the area they need most. We might be surprised by the results.
I heard an encouraging story about an attractive millionaire who married an ordinary woman. The marriage instantly became the talk of the town.
"Why would he marry her when he could have any woman he wanted?" The people whispered among themselves. "It won't last. She's just no good enough for him."
The man took the ordinary woman away for six months on an exotic honeymoon. When he returned, there appeared to be another woman on his arm. She walked with confidence and poise. The countenance of her face glowed with beauty.
"Now that's the kind of woman a handsome man should be with," announced the town's biggest loud mouth.
As the happy couple causally strolled past the gossipmonger, she got a closer look. To her surprise, it wasn't someone new holding the gentlemen's arm at all. It was the average woman he had married months ago--completely transformed!
The wise millionaire had taken his common bride away and nurtured her inward beauty. He lovingly spoke positive and encouraging words to her day and night until she believed she was beautiful. The once ordinary woman now carries herself with confidence and exudes the exquisiteness that her husband saw in her all along.
His secret, you ask? He took time to care for and fertilize her confidence until she grew into the grandeur display she was always meant to be.
You and I shouldn't dream about taking off our shoes and walking around on the neighbors' grass. Instead, we should try fertilizing our own yard. We might be surprised how it blossoms into a thing of beauty.

Dear Lord, Thank you for my mate. Protect my thoughts and help me to see them as I once did. I'm not perfect either. I don't want to judge my spouse. Instead, I want to encourage them to be all they can be. Today, I will put away any discontentment, any anger, and any lustful thoughts toward another, and work at building a beautiful relationship that brings joy to our marriage and glory to Your Name, Amen.

Some time ago, 30+ gave me an award- CERTIFIED HONEST BLOGGER.

Thanks for the award babes. It feels good to learn that someone thinks my blog is honest enough to earn an award. É se ooo...
So i'm supposed to pass the award to seven other bloggers who i think are honest bloggers. Here goes...

Diary of a G

Castle Queen

So guys, the rule is this- pass on the award to seven other bloggers, you hear? E..hen!



While others were deliberating on energy and power, they were sleeping.
While others were deliberating on economic development, they were sleeping.
While others deliberated on food security, they were asleep.
When they fixed interest rate on debtor's (African) loans, our leaders were asleep.
While others deliberated on conflict resolution through dialogue our representatives were already snoring.

They only woke up, to support motion for adjournment and signed the communiqué.
Of course!, they need rest, they worked tirelessly back home clamping down their opponents and critics. They had spent the previous night strategising on the next move to subdue their opponents.

Back home airports were closed 2hrs before their arrival, motor-ways were blocked 1hr ahead, Armed Policemen stood guard 8hrs before arrival. Rented crowd clamoured under sun to cheer them up.


I got the above in my mail too and if it's true then its a BIG shame, the kind of leaders we have in Africa!

Lastly, afronuts asked to see some more animal pics from the Zoo in Abidjan.

Monday, November 10, 2008


I hadn’t planned to travel to Abidjan. The plan was- take a one week trip to Ghana with a friend. The friend I was supposed to go with backed out at the last minute and I was faced with two choices-go on alone to Ghana and hope to have fun or accept another friend’s invite to Abidjan and be assured that I would definitely have loads of fun. Of course I went for the latter option, if na you nko?

So on Wednesday, 29th October, off I went to Abidjan, Cote d’ivoire.

The flight was okay except for some mild travel sickness. Unfortunately I am one of those people who suffer from that condition-Nausea and discomfort while traveling especially long distance(road) and air travel(even if it’s a 5 mins flight).

The plane had to do a stopover at Ghana so the flight took longer than usual, finally we arrived Abidjan in one piece. At the Immigrations inspection point, there was this hard faced immigrations officer checking passports. He would glance at the passports and either wave you on or ask you to step to the side. I was last in line cos I had taken my time to get down from the plane after everyone else since I was still feeling woozy and nauseous after the flight. When he got to my turn, hard faced immigration guy took one glance at the passport and waved me to the side where a group of about seven guys were already waiting. I was surprised, Imagine! Fine babe no pimples like me na im this man dey ask to wait behind ke? Oya make we dey see wetin go happen. The worst part be say if it comes to speaking french once e don pass Je m’appelle Princesa and Je suis Nigeriané, make dem just forget me o!

Fortunately, at the same moment when the immigration guy asked us to follow him, this guy surfaces from nowhere and walks up to me, “Princesa?” I nodded. He introduced himself to me in English. He worked in the airport and my friend had asked him to assist me through the customs processes cos he knew how difficult the guys could get at times. I was relieved to say the least and I asked him where we were been taken to cos by now we were been led away by the immigrations officers. He informed me that we were going to be searched and the guys were Anti-Drug officers. I asked him if I looked like a drug pusher. The guy chuckled and reassured me that it was just protocol and we would be out of there in no time.

The hard faced rummaged through my bag as if he kept something in there. In my mind, I was thinking “You go soon see the thing wey go make you blind, dey search well well” Maybe he could read my mind cos it didn’t take too long before he zipped my bag close and handed it back to me.

Outside the arrival lounge, my friend K was waiting. On our drive home, I noticed the city was clean, the roads were okay, definitely not as bad as ours here in Naija. The traffic was light and soon we were in Riviera where my friend lived.
When we got home, there was a full house waiting to receive the visitor from Nigeria. His sister-in-law had prepared a sumptuous dish of Jellof rice, Coleslaw and beef which I dug into after my shower.
I was exhausted from my trip so I hit the bed straightaway after eating.

DAY 2.
I woke up quite early. This may have been due to the fact that I had gone to bed early the previous day or maybe it was cos I was used to waking up early to go to work. Then again, it could have been because of the one-hour time difference(Nigeria is one hour ahead of Abidjan). Whatever the reason was, I was up and everyone else was still sleeping so I went to wake up my host but I got “Girl, go back to sleep okay…it’s still too early”

So although I was impatient to discover the city of Abidjan, I had to patiently wait for the others to get up so I sat in bed watching the latest on my adopted brother Barack Obama and the US elections on CNN.

Soon everyone was up and we had breakfast and I got to ready to start my tour of the city. Thankfully my host is self-employed so he didn’t have to report to the office. We are accompanied by his sister-in-law, Chy who only recently moved to Abidjan from Nigeria and hasn’t been around very much.

At the point, let me inform you guys that unlike Lagos, Abidjan is not a very large City. It comprises of these main areas- COCODY, DEUX PLATEAUX, MARCORY, PLATEAU, RIVIERA, TREICHVILLE, ZONE 3, ZONE 4/BIETRY, ADJAME, PORT BOUET.

Our first stop was SOCOCE (pronounced SA-KO-ZAY). SOCOCE is a shopping mall located in Deux Plateaux (pronounced Day-Platoo) The shopping malls are called Galleria/Gallery by the locals. I learn from my friends that Abidjan peeps love the Galleries a lot and most of their shopping are done in the malls.

So we snoop around the malls. My sparse knowledge of French comes into play here as the number one french phrase I remember from my secondary school days is “Combien?”(meaning How much?) When the shop owners rattle off in French, I quickly go “Je ne comprend pas…Tu parle anglais?” (meaning I don’t understand…do you speak English) Almost always, I get a shake of the head and the reply “Non, Un peu…un peu” (“No, small…small”). At this point I let K or Chy his sis-in-law take over the conversation. Am surprised at how fast Chy has been able to pick up the language in the short while she has been in Abidjan. She almost rattles off as well as the Ivoriens.

We buy a few things at the sports shop, have lunch at a restaurant in the mall then head over to CAP SUD, another gallery located in Zone 4(Quatre).
We basically do the same things here, snoop around the malls, buy some stuff, and take photographs.

Then we drive around the city for a while before heading back home so as to beat the evening traffic.

This morning, it rained but I wasn’t deterred. No rain was going to stop me from traipsing round the city. Soon though, the rain faded to a light drizzle and once again we took off, this time me, my host, K and a friend of his.
We drove round the city, had lunch at a fast food place-Castle Fried Chicken in Zone 4/BIETRY.

Then we went to PRIMA, another Gallerie in Zone 4. Snooped round the shops, bought some stuff. Things are really expensive in Abidjan, anytime I asked for the amount of something and was told the cost in CFA(their local currency), I did the conversion to Naira in my head and I came to the conclusion that their stuffs were more expensive than in Nigeria. The exchange rate is N1 to 4CFA. The average cost of a good quality top in Abidjan is about 30,000CFA which is around N7,500.

After PRIMA, we headed to SORIRE D’ANGE, a lingerie shop located in Plateaux. The owner of the shop is a friend of K’s and he had talked so much about her that I decided to check out her stuff. I didn’t find anything I liked there or rather the costs were just simply outrageous. Even when K offered to pay I just wouldn’t allow him waste his money like that. I couldn’t imagine paying 50,000CFA for a Brassiere, when no be gold them take make the bra!lol!

We got back on the road, cruising around. I bought some Bole(roasted plantain) on the road. Did I mention that this is a very popular in Abidjan? I saw many Bole Sellers all over the place and I learnt from my friends that Ivoriens love Plantains and they eat a lot of it from fried plantains to plantain chips to roasted plantain to boiled plantains to pounded plantain, just name it!
And plantains are so so cheap over there! If I lived in Abidjan, I would eat plantain every day, oh yes I am a plantain lover!

The last place we visited was the Phone Village. It is similar to our own computer village in Lagos except that it is much smaller. Do I need to tell you that the prices were also crazy! Almost twice the cost of what the phones were going for in Naija. I couldn’t understand why they were that expensive.

Food stuffs and locally manufactured stuff in Abidjan are relatively cheap compared to Naija but imported goods like clothing, accessories, phones, computers are really expensive. K explained that the Taxes paid on the imported goods are very high which is why they are that expensive.

Today, I went out with K and Chy. We parked our car somewhere in Plateaux and decided to walk. It was fun.
We saw some really nice artworks displayed on the road. Haggled with the sellers, not like we really wanted to buy but we just wanted to know how much they were going for.
We took some photographs around the city then headed to BLOCKHAUSS. This was the area where the real indigenes of Abidjan lived, you know like the Isale Eko peeps of Lagos Island.
We went to this popular local joint where they serve seafoods(crabs, snails, Fish). At first I was apprehensive cos of the setting but I really enjoyed the meal. The snail was amazing.
The roasted fish and Acheké too was something else. Acheke(couscous) is to the Ivorian what Garri is the the Nigerian. I learnt that everywhere they go, their Acheké goes with them,lol!

We went to talk to the women preparing the meal and they were very warm and friendly, I even helped turn the Acheké on Fire. The women found it very funny.

From there we headed to Hotel Ivoire in Cocody. The biggest hotel in Cote d’Ivoire. I
It is a Five Star hotel although it has lost some of its shine due to poor maintenance. We looked round the hotel, had some drinks, took some photos and headed back home.

Day 5
Today we packed up our stuff and headed for the beach-GRAND BASSAM beach. We spent practically the whole day on the beach having fun, playing, eating and just generally lazing under the sun.

Later at night we went clubbing. Visited different clubs and finally settled at a strip club, yea, you heard right, A STRIP CLUB and No! I don’t have an addiction for strip clubs yet,lol! Just that after my first strip club experience in Naija, I was curious to see how things were ran there in Abidjan.
There weren’t many people at the strip club which was surprising to me cos the last one I visited in Nigeria was very rowdy and jam-packed. K informed me that Abidjan people were tired of the strip clubs and it wasn’t a big deal to them anymore which was why the place was almost empty.
The owner of the club was a friend to K and he offered to ask one of the girls to give me a complimentary lap dance on the house. I didn’t see no harm in it so I accepted. Next thing I knew about five almost nude girls swamped me, one of them pushing her arse in my face, the other dragged my hand to her boobs. The one dancing suddenly reached for my top to pull it down, na then I know say wahala don land. No be person tell me to take cover. Chy laughed at me “Shey na u want lap dance, oya why you dey run now?”
I replied “Nne I wanted lap dance, I didn’t ask to be raped!”
At about 4am, we headed for home.

Day 6
Chy and I decided it was going to be a day for the girls and where else do the girls head to if not to the market to do some serious shopping. We headed to the Grandé Marche(Big market) in Adjame. The market reminded me of Oshodi market in Lagos.
I went with 100,000CFA which is about N25,000 and I planned to purchase some of the local fabric(Woodin) and I was pleasantly surprised to find that It was a lot cheaper than in Nigeria so I purchased quite a lot to give to family and friends when I get back to Nigeria. I also bought some lovely ivory beads and some local slippers.

We also planned to make soup for the house so we went to the food stuffs section. Again it was refreshing to find how cheap the foodstuffs were. We even bought 3 huge bunches of plantains for 600CFA(about N150). That would be impossible in Nigeria!

I also showed some of my razzness according to Chy. I didn’t think they were crazy. I was just having fun the best way I knew how even if it meant being called a razz babe,lol!
I drank Coconut juice by the roadside, bought some local roadside sharwarma,lol! It was actually roasted meat on sticks(somewhat like suya) and hard rock-like bread. I saw people queing up for it and I thought to myself, “This thing wey dem dey rush like this go sweet o”, lol! I ended up not liking it so much.

We also bought some fruits. There was this guy making fresh pineapple juice. You pick out a pineapple and he peels it and squeeze out the juice for you. I couldn’t wait for all that long process so I bought a bottle of already squeezed juice for 700CFA. I really enjoyed it when I drank it at home(Nooo, I didn’t drink it in the market, my razzness get level na,lol!)

After hours of shopping we headed home. We couldn’t do anymore touring that day cos we had to cook soup for the house.

Oh! I forgot to mention we took taxis for the first time. Abidjan taxis! Those people dey use better motor dey do taxi for there o and they charged us 1500CFA (About N350) which is quite cheap if you consider that they buy a litre of petrol for up to 800CFA (about N200).

Day 7
Today, we had a full tour team. K, K’s pal, T(K’s nephew), Chy and I.
We headed for the University De Cocody, Abidjan. The university was okay, nothing fantastic. We walked around, took some shots and left for PRIMA cos K had to fix his laptop there.
As usual, Chy and I went browsing the shops looking for deals but found none. We stopped for some ice-cream at some point too.

As soon as K was through, we left for home but stopped on the way for some Abidjan Suya. They don’t prepare their Suya like we do in Naija. The meat is boiled in a huge metal pot from which customers make their choice(liver, beef, Shaki, e.t.c). the meat is chopped into bits and served with pepper, tomatoes and onions. It tasted good though.

Day 8
I call this the Chinese day.
Left the house at about noon to a Chinese restaurant in Zone 4(Did I mention Zone 4 is the happening place in Abidjan?).
Enjoyed the meal-Rice and Fish in sauce.
After the meal we headed to a massage parlour, also in Zone 4 where I got the best massage I’ve ever gotten in my life from a Chinese Masseuse.
It was a very relaxing experience and all I wanted to do afterwards was just sleep but my friend K had other plans.
He wanted to buy me a gift at the Gallery. A new phone. He had yabbed my faithful Nokia 3110c which I love very much and felt a big girl like me needed a classy phone(his own words o!)
So I went along. Free thing dey sweet now,lol!
I chose a Nokia N95 but the price was crazy. Almost 50% more than the cost in Nokia Store, Nigeria so I opted to take the money in cash and purchase the phone when I get back in Naija. They graciously agreed.
We did a lil’more shop snooping and picture snapping before we finally left for home.
On our way out of the Galleria, I saw this awesome sight in the sky.
I just had to take a shot. Don't know what it was though.

Day 9
This was my last day in Abidjan. My flight back to Nigeria was scheduled for 7.45pm Abidjan time so I still had plenty time to look around. K decided to take me to the Zoo. Okay rather, I bullied him into taking me,lol!

The Zoo was fun. I saw animals I had only read of in books. Elephants, Lions, camels, Crocodiles, Panthers, Hyenas, Gorillas e.t.c.

From the Zoo, we went to Cocody market. I wanted to do some last minute shopping and K had assured me I would get lots of nice African print shirts, dresses and accessories to give out as gifts when I get back to Nigeria.

I wasn’t disappointed. I spent all the money I had on me in that market. Would have even bought more stuff if I had more money. Shopamaniac like me,lol!

Had to go back home to take a nap before heading to the airport.

At about 6pm, we left for the airport. I had mixed feelings; I was sad cos I had to leave but was also happy that I made the trip to Abidjan.
It was one wonderful experience I would never forget!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Hey Fellas. Whats up?!!!
Your girl is dropping this post live from Abidjan in between having Maadddddddd funnnnnnnnnnnnnnn!
Just wanted to holla so you guys know I haven't forgotten you at all. I should be back in Naija very soon so keep ur fingers crossed...plenty gists and pics for you guys!

Till then, I leave you with this...

Lots of love-