Morning Musings

Rigozo

Today, like most days I find myself awake even before the sun is up. The sky is inky black and I look out my window as if anticipating a lover. The hours before sunrise is one of my favorite times of the day. I like to wake up early in the morning so that I can spend time with myself.

I like to imagine that every morning is like a painter painting over an old canvas. I like to tell myself that I’ve gotten another day to love and be loved. I like to think about all the things I would like to do and the process I’ll have to follow to get there. Another chance to give meaning to my existence and going after the things that I want. I like to watch the window like I’m waiting for my lover to jump in and carry me off farfarfaraway.

When I hear someone say that they are not a morning person, I just cannot relate. For me, I just love to be up early, to breathe deeply, and listen to my heart thud in my chest in a quiet rhythm. Also, it makes sense to revisit yesterday with fresh eyes, accepting that the past is in the past – I’m in the present. Those things that hurt me before are all behind me, and I do not have to be shackled by them. Morning comes with its uncertainties yet I would rather run into the future than dwell in the past.

I hope today stays fresh and wonderful to you too.❤️ Have a wonderful day and a happy weekend.

Photo credit: Rigozo


I love city lights. I took this picture in the early hours of the morning after it rained.

Thursday Talk Series on Tobe’s Life and Work As a Photographer

Rigozo

I saw a Bollywood movie yesterday and as always their storyline is intriguing, and the acting was superb and hilarious. The name is A Magical Love Story, and it’s about love, family, fate, curses, deceit, and magic. We know real-life is not the same as a screenplay but we do all we can each day to find happiness. There is no substitute for trying again and again. Sometimes life is to be enjoyed and other times it picks you up, does a little spin, and sets you down. You can be sure that it will take a while before you will be able to find your balance – you will eventually find it. Let have this in mind, “Nature has given us all the pieces required to achieve exceptional wellness and health, but has left it to us to put these pieces together.”—Diane McLaren. Whether you believe that love/life is magical, it’s up to you to write your own story.

Today I’m introducing Tobe and I’ve found him to be one of those people (rare) who are completely honest with themselves. This makes him able to interpret his feelings without trying to convince himself otherwise. He pays attention to details, especially in his work, and always tries to find a balance between business and personal life – to the best of his ability. In his relationship with people, he is understanding and reliable, makes amazing connections (he always knows a guy). I can’t remember our first meeting but we’ve had several easy and open-minded conversations. That said, he’s the first to start conversations with people – he still hasn’t realized that he has an amazing gift of relating with people – even strangers. He is a goal-getter and an exceptional manager, and when it comes to having fun he gets into the mood 100%.

Trivia on Tobe

- A foodie

- Loves to dance

- An Arsenal fan

Q. Can you introduce yourself and what you do?

A. My name is Tobenna Afamefuna Nnamdi Amechi. Yes, I do not have an English name and for a while, I didn’t like it. However, today I am proud of my Igbo names because each of them has specific meanings which are relevant to life and living. I am a photographer and I run a photography business in Lagos, Nigeria.

Tobenna Amechi

Q. Why do you do your job, and would you rather do something else?

I started the business because it was a skill I had and I needed to make money while waiting to get full-time employment. I wasn’t also so bombed with the idea of working for someone except for having the idea of ‘corporate work’ at the time and being responsible. Over time, the reasons for being in business have grown from money-making and now emotional and core business principles. At some point, I just wanted to make money, other times I just wanted to be happy. There was a period it was powered by how people felt when they got served by my business. Now all of those things have faded, and I am more interested in building a business that solves clients’ problems while meeting the needs of the individuals offering the service. There are days in the cause of running this business that I felt I would rather be doing an actual 9-5, step out every day and do actual work, and then come back. I have gone ahead to even apply for jobs on some days. In the end, I am still here going through the motions and believing. I am a corporate guy. I have an affinity for emails, suits, ties, warm regards, etc. It excites me, and I sincerely want to experience it, if I get the opportunity, either by building it into my own business or getting that actual job and maybe just doing it for 6 months. For me, the travails of being a business owner are always looming. There are busy days, lazy days, and days I question my existence and relevance to both myself and the universe. I like activity – purposeful activity – hence I feel very uncomfortable when I am not doing anything. Why do I currently do what I do? I am not sure I know anymore. I believe many entrepreneurs have gone through this phase too. However, I am at the point where I want to prove my relevance to myself. I want to be sure I am not just existing, and inconsequential to the happenings of life.

Q. What two things do you think of the most each day and why?

  • Growth – I am really scared of not measuring up to my mates, of poverty and stagnant.
  • Relevance – I want to make a mark in peoples lives I don’t want to have just existed, I want to have touched lives so when I die in the next 80 years, people can have good testimonies about me.
  • Money – to make more and never lack while giving to people in need.
  • Love – I feel alone most times, I need a girlfriend in my life.
  • Sex – How I am not having it and wish to get married quickly so I can indulge without guilt
  • Family – current and future.
  • Heaven – How I try not to do the many different things I could be doing that seem normal but will cost me eternity, I can’t go to hell Biko.

Q. What is the best thing about what you do?

A. Sincerely, the best thing about it right now is delivering to the clients’ satisfaction and the consequent balance that comes. Of course, making great images satisfy me, and this was the best thing at some point but not now making great images also means the client would be satisfied.

Q. What do you appreciate about yourself and what would you like to change?

A. I appreciate my soft nature which makes me want to do good for people all the time. I also would like to change it, to be a little more strong-willed, not caring what people will say and a lot of other things.

Q. What have you accomplished so far that has made you proud?

A. A little while ago, I was in a virtual meeting with my staff. I looked at my computer screen and saw their names registered and I realized how blessed I was to have two individuals on my team. I am proud to have been able to build Wise Visuals by God’s grace from a one-person team to where it is now. I am proud and grateful for it.

Q. What was the last book you read and what can you say about it?

A. Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell. There is no successful person who didn’t have opportunities handed to them, in most cases they didn’t realize they were opportunities that would make them world-famous. However, they still made the best out of the opportunities that were presented to them, putting in the time and work needed to be great at what they did, clocking their 10,000 hours of work to be excellent. In light of this, I figure that everyone is presented with a series of opportunities in their lifetime, we are tasked to view each season as an opportunity and make the best of it. Achieving expertise at something requires you to have put in much time work approximately 10,000 hours, which the successful people we know put in both voluntarily and involuntarily as a result of the opportunities they were presented with. If this is true which does make sense, then intentional practice over time helps the mastery of and success at one’s craft.

Q. What do you feel is the difference between living and existing?

A. The major difference is impact and self-satisfaction. When you live, you affect lives, small and big and you are happy and self-satisfied doing that.

Over time, the reasons for being in business have grown from money-making and now emotional and core business principles. At some point, I just wanted to make money, other times I just wanted to be happy. There was a period it was powered by how people felt when they got served by my business. Now all of those things have faded, and I am more interested in building a business that solves clients’ problems while meeting the needs of the individuals offering the service

Amechi Tobenna on Thursday Talk Series

Q. What is that thing that you see as an obstacle which can stop you from having success?

A. Inconsistency. I find that I can start things and most times I don’t know how to finish or sustain them. Knowing this is a challenge, has also posed an inhibition to start for me, because I don’t want to start and not finish.

Q. If like a movie your life up to this point is played for you to watch, describe how you’d feel about it?

A. I’d feel how I am feeling now, unsatisfied and some level of regret. Grateful for the wins and optimism and faith for a better ending.


Thank you so much Tobenna for the interview and I hope you find what gives you satisfaction. And thank you everyone for sticking around. Have a blissful Thursday.

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“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”

Steve Jobs

Currently Reading

Frank Herbert’s sixth book - Heretics of Dune
I am so proud of myself for getting to book 6

TTS# Drawing Happiness and Becoming Better by Chinenye

Life is really funny. Previously, my biggest challenge was starting a blog, and now it’s trying to keep up with my blog. I don’t even want to talk about where my head has been these days. They say most writers write from experience, theirs or others. For me, a lot of what I write comes from my experiences. I’ve come to realize that it takes a lot of effort for me not to translate my emotions and thoughts into my work. Not everything that I write is doom and gloom but as humans the things that hurt us tend to cling the most. Well, I have good news to chase away the bad vibes. I covered a bridal shower last week and it was so much fun. Also, the pictures I took turned out to be awesome and I got great feedback from the client. I know I mostly put up pictures I took with my phone but I’ll make an exception today. The good news is that I’ll be sharing the images I took from the bridal shower at the end of the interview. I’m so excited that I’m getting better at photography and look forward to breaking records😂

Today’s guest is Chinenye, and she’s one of a kind. I call her Tiney (she’s got ropes for limbs) and I’ve known her for the longest time – watched her grow into a lovely woman. Her favorite thing to do is to draw. She’s got that arty vibes and the attitude. I remember that she could nap for about nine hours and still wake up grouchy. Wow! However, for a very long time, sleeping was a form of coping mechanism for her. The more time she spent sleeping, the less time she had to deal with people and reality in general. I’m glad that she has come so far, and have let more people in. She’s one of my best girls, and I’m always rooting for her. Nenye is also a foodie, eat with her to your detriment. She taught herself to play the guitar – her elfin hands can also play magic on drums – and she now has a special way of loving people that’s open and enduring.❤️


Q. Can you introduce yourself and what you do?

A. My name is Uzomah Faith Chinenye. The 5th child of the Uzomaki clan. I just graduated – so I want to believe (I’ve got no idea what’s next). I studied Fine Arts and Design at the University of Portharcourt, Rivers state.

Chinenyenwa Faith Uzomah

Q. Why did you study your course and would you rather study something else?

A. I have always wanted to draw since I was little because it made me happy ☺. What I mean is, when I’m happy, I draw, and when I’m not happy (sad) I also, draw. Actually my happiness features a great deal in why I chose to draw 😁. I would have loved to study nothing else but Fine Art.

Q. What have you accomplished so far that has made you proud?

A. I’m not so adventurous, to be honest. I don’t like taking risks. I’m a very careful somebody. What can I say is my accomplishment? Well, I got through school. I’m living a better life spiritually, and I’m so overwhelmed by it. I got to be more social and well, I didn’t get fat 😁. I’m proud of my family. They never made the distance noticeable. They are awesome!

Q. Can you share the time when you were certain it was what you wanted to do?

A. Uhm, what can I say about this? It was when I wrote JAMB, which was, fortunately, the period screening was introduced to schools. I felt that it was a sign because I was very nervous and unsure of how I’d perform if post utme had eventually happened. I thought I may not have gotten admission in that case – I was so scared! 😂 😂. I remember that when I saw my JAMB result I started crying. My fear of post utme was real. Then the first and second lists for admissions came out I just taya because I didn’t see my name. My older brother wanted me to come live with him so that I could prepare to sit for another JAMB but I turned down his offer. I was also working at that time and I was convinced that I would still gain admission regardless. I was also advised to take up another course of study at another University which I considered it, and it made me cry a lot. Eventually, the third list came out, and my name was on the list (at last😅). The best thing was that I got what I applied for, Fine Arts and Design. I remember laughing coz’ in my heart of hearts, I no get the strength to write JAMB again, abeg). Another thing that made me certain was the peace I got while praying over my admission when I despaired. The peace was the confirmation before every other thing happened – I gladly cut my hair as I would be starting a new life, in a new place 😂😂.

Q. What do you feel is the difference between living and existing?

A. Well first would be the spelling! Second, to live for me is to complete a cause/course. To live! There is always something to do or something to finish. Meanwhile, to exist is to be a tool 😑. If the carpenter uses a hammer to drive in a nail, who did the actual work? Shey, you get? The person who exists makes no difference or even an effort – just does nothing. But a person who is living is doing something, has a certain goal, and makes a plan on how to get to it.

Chinenye Faith Uzomah sitting in her faculty
Chinenyenwa Faith Uzomah

Q. What is your reaction when people criticize/judge you?

A. Ah! First I die! I have tried all kinds of positive thinking to counter what I hear people say about me, but e no work. It used to be that I would think and think – still do sometimes – and this would make me sad and try to meet up people’s expectations. The more I did, the more empty I felt. There were times I formed introvert sef, that was worse gan. Sometimes I would lash out and leave my tormentors (or were they assassins) scarred. No matter what I did though, it didn’t just feel right. These days, I believe I’m being helped by the Good Lord to not take to heart what people say. I’m breaking out from the former way I dealt with criticism and judgment. I always pray for my own heart, and also for wisdom to direct me. IT HAS BEEN THE BEST AND ONLY SOLUTION FOR ME.😁 Therefore, I’ll stick to the Good Lord.

Q. What do you appreciate about yourself and what would you like to change?

A. I appreciate the fact that God is intentional about my life and I’m responding to him. I appreciate the fact that I can now sincerely talk about the changes that have happened in my life. Nowadays, I accept that I’m wrong😂 my family knows how I like to defend myself whether right or wrong – that’s vewi badt – but I’m getting better at being wise concerning these things sha😂. What I will love to change about myself is the fear of uncertainties.

Q. What two things do you think of the most each day and why?

A. To be very very honest, what I think of is how I can please God and how well. Why? (call me a freak, I kuku have explained what my reaction would be if I am being bad-mouthed). It’s been God and I through school (so shall it be forevermore. Haters die! 😈) and I have been receiving help from him. What I must do and what not to do. Where I should go and where not to go. Who I should keep and who I shouldn’t. How I should not worry so much about family, because God’s got them, and so on. Many people have a lot to say about this, but it is what works for me and I’ll stick to it. Abi now?

Q. What superpowers would you like to have and why?

A. Lol, see me see case! Wetin Musa no go see for gate? 😂 😂 Oh well, I can’t pick reading people’s minds because I suspect I’ll die of migraine. I choose, uhm 🤔having the ability to answer all questions (is that even considered a superpower?) Why? Well, you said I should tell you what powers I’d like to have but I’ve never given it any thought before. All I have, I give to you 😂. I felt like I just had to say something.

I have always wanted to draw since I was little because it made me happy ☺. What I mean is, when I’m happy, I draw, and when I’m not happy (sad) I also, draw. Actuality my happiness features a great deal in why I chose to draw 😁. I would have loved to study nothing else but Fine Art.

Chinenye Uzomah on Thursday Talk Series

Q. If you could, what’s the one thing you’d change about the world?

A. Uhm, one change can affect many other things. It’s something to think properly over, and I think my time with you is up 😂 😂. If I must answer sha, the one thing I’ll change is myself. 😁 A better me, a better world.


Thank you Chinenye (Tiney) for the interview😂 Congratulations on your graduation 🎓 and next time we’ll share your work. Thank you all for being here. Have a lovely weekend. Bye!

Bridal Shower Images

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Thursday Talk Series| Idowu As A Living Oracle

Rigozo

Holla! Have you listened to Ed Sheeran – Shivers? You should do – like right now – I don’t mean now, but after you’ve read today’s Thursday Talk Series you can skedaddle outta here and go listen to Eddie’s latest song if pop is your kind of jam. All week I had it on repeat. The first time I listened to the song I started dancing even though I’m a tragic dancer. I hope I’m never asked to dance to save my life because it would be my obituary. Yes, that bad. But Ed’s Shivers is that good.

Standing on non-existing protocols, I’d like to introduce Idowu Adeyemi, The Oracle (it’s a fact that I always hear a thunderous cheer anytime he’s introduced). If Orishás (traditional Yoruba spirits) walked the earth, it is safe to say that Idowu is an ancient spirit trapped in a human body, but still offering service to humankind. His personality shines through in all of his affairs, and the work that he puts into the things he’s passionate about places him above his peers (notice I didn’t say he puts passion into his work). He’s also one of the best people that I have been privileged to know. He’s a dreamer by nature, a lawyer by profession, and an Orator by might. I believe the world is waiting to know a man like Idowu, and soon they’ll get to meet him. When he’s not busy with legal matters, he reads (African literature is his favorite), cooks, listens to music, take short walks, and engages in lively discussions (from how to develop the reading culture of Young Africans to the which housemate was evicted on BBN).

Trivia about Idowu

He loved to watch Bollywood😂😂😭❤️

Q. Can you introduce yourself and what you do?

A. My name is Idowu Olamilekan Adeyemi but my friends and fans like to call me “The Oracle.” Not that I truly believe that I’m one but it has a nice ring to it, so I stick to it. I am a Lawyer with my practice areas including Intellectual Property Law, Corporate and Commercial Practice, Legal drafting, Research and Writing. So, if you are ever in need of my services, don’t hesitate to reach out. I am also trying to get a Communication Consulting Company off the ground and I am optimistic it will turn out great pretty soon.

Idowu Adeyemi after Law School
Idowu Olamilekan Adeyemi

Q. Why do you do your job, and would you rather do something else?

A. I have to say that I am not one of those privileged people who have the incredible gift of knowing what exactly they want to do with their lives from an early stage. I was a commercial student throughout my secondary school but then I stumbled on law when I was going to write my o’ levels exam and it felt like the right thing to do because it aligned with my natural abilities but then I got to the University and it felt like a total disaster. It took me another year after law school to fall in love with this profession. So, I practice law because I finally believe that this where I am meant to be and I am good at it and it does align with a major part of my personality not to mention the fact that money doesn’t hurt too. As far as doing something else goes, I won’t. I will rather complement my law practice with other creative endeavors that I am certain I have abilities for.

Q. When have you felt like giving up?

A. Good gracious! That has been too many times already. In fact, it use to be everyday. Being a person with disability and living in an unstructured society like Nigeria is a double jeopardy to say the least. And a specific instance of such frustration will be when a prospective employer hinted at my disability as the reason for not getting the job. This had happened more than once but this particular day, I went back home depressed and I was sure I was never going to try again. But after hunger waya my head for a couple of days, I needed no extra motivation. Lol. I figured if the society is not going to give me a space, I can either take it or create one for myself and that is what I have been doing since that time.

Idowu living in the moment at sunrise

Q. What two things do you think of the most each day and why?

A. I think about self and professional development. I want to be the best at whatever I do. My career and future mean a lot to me and I am always thinking about how many positive steps I have taken each day to get closer to it. I think about family too. A lot, but that is a story for another day. Lol.

Q. What have you accomplished so far that has made you proud?

A. Honestly, I have a lot of things to be grateful for. But what I am proud of the most is the fact that I am able to attain independence. My worst fear growing up use to be that I will forever be dependent as a person with disability. It hunted me so bad that I use to cry in my private space but today, e no too hard to drink small garri and groundnut daily. Lol.

The Oracle having a good time
Photo credit: Rigozo

Q. If money was not relevant, what would you do all day?

A. I will sit with peers and engage in interesting and intelligent conversations all day. I will sit with old people and listen to stories about the past and learn more about our various cultures and languages. I will spend more time trying to understand the dynamics and the diversity of humanity. I sure as hell will travel a lot and explore the world beyond my immediate reality and environment.

Q. What kind of people do you allow in your circle?

A. All kinds of people. Everyone is welcome, as long as you are kind, empathetic and you can show and appreciate love. Tribe, race, religion, class and other basis of discrimination do not apply in my relationships.

Q. Do you consider that people are basically good or bad?

A. I think we are both and I think we are more than that. Humanity is complex, it will be cheap oversimplification to say we are either just good or bad. The part of us that we exhibit however is dependent on various factors; like the part of us we have nurtured the most, socialization process, level of knowledge and exposure, how complex the dilemma we are presented with is at the point of making each decision and a lot more. We can only try to do the right thing but we have to admit that we will not always get it right and that’s okay.

Idowu ‘The Oracle’ in Ibadan

It took me another year after law school to fall in love with this profession. So, I practice law because I finally believe that this where I am meant to be and I am good at it and it does align with a major part of my personality not to mention the fact that money doesn’t hurt too. As far as doing something else goes, I won’t. I will rather compliment my law practice with other creative endeavors that I am certain I have abilities for.

Idowu Adeyemi, ‘The Oracle’ on Thursday Talk Series.

Q. What is your biggest complaint about this country?

A. It’s the lack of a system for me. You cannot single out a sector in Nigeria where things are working the way they should. Everyone just dey freestyle and living each day as it comes. It’s pathetic!

Q. What is the one thing you think that should be taught in school about choosing a career that isn’t?

A. Actually, for me, it’s two things. First, it’s okay to figure out your career path much later after school. It doesn’t mean you are a loser or irresponsible or dumb. It only means you are yet to find yourself and that can take a lot of time for some people and it’s absolutely alright. Just don’t give up on yourself. Whenever you wake up is your morning. All you need do, no matter how long it takes is ensure that you wake up. Second, do not underestimate the power of social capital. Great people in your circle are worth infinitely more than money. So, build relationships and don’t burn bridges. When you finally wake up, those people will be there to say good morning to you and help you get off to a beautiful day ahead.


Thank you so much, Idowu for the interview and I wish you all the best. Remember that your dreams are as great as you envision them to be and it’s only a matter of time. And to everyone still reading thank you so much. Also, you can like, comment and share. Have a lovely Thursday.

Below is a little something I wrote for Idowu a while back, hope you enjoy it.

The Oracle,

When they started calling you ‘The Oracle’ back in school, I teased you at every given opportunity. Well, that was my job description as your friend and sometimes tormentor. I tried my best to be at all of your competitions anyway. 

In a packed lecture hall, when it was your turn to speak, I could sink my teeth into the tension in the air. Maybe I didn’t hear all that you said, and that was the least reason why I was there anyway. The main reason was to watch people as they listened to you. 

To see a mass of bodies lean a little further, hold their breaths, and scream as one at the words you said, was euphoric. That you held sway over the emotions and the actions of people was in itself a form of power. And that was when I realized that you may not be a deity, but you were at those moments the most powerful person in the room. 

Dedicated to Idowu Adeyemi.

How I would like to spend my weekend😭

On Getting Better For Myself

Hey guys! I hope you all had a great time and are looking forward to the rest of the month. Well, I have been busy, and it seems like it will be the same until the end of the year – no breaks for me.

It’s has been a bit crazy, and I’m surprised that I haven’t lost my head completely. Hands down I get the best support from the awesome people around me who genuinely care about my physical and mental health. They are the reason I’m able to stay sane and keep pushing. Also, I’m doing the things I care about and it helps me go to work with a lot of positive energy and produce better results.

I should mention that I often think about becoming a better version of myself, lot, and all the ways that it can be achieved. Also, how I struggle to understand and appreciate myself every day and try to do the right things that are right for me. This has helped me to push away people and habits that are toxic and irrelevant to my growth.

Now, it hasn’t been easy, and I would like to share with you those things I have been struggling with the past couple of months and have acknowledged.

Having Anxiety and Stress

I won’t call myself a perfectionist – that’s too high a bar to set for myself. When I start something, I set my mind to do my best. Nonetheless, I’ll say that I struggle to manage situations when they get out of my control because I like to have a firm grasp of things, and do my best to avoid surprises. If things don’t go as planned I start to freak out, get anxious and overwhelmed, and shocks will go through my body. Always, as long as I have to get work done and something messes with my schedule unexpectedly, I just have to breathe to stabilize. Stress gives me legit headaches. My brain, my heart, they just can’t deal with all of that. People’s intentions are great but I prefer to be far away from whatever affects me negatively.

Lack of Organizational Skills

A big shout-out to people who are organized and can work with daily planners to stay productive. The only reason why I’m so inconsistent with blogging I have several things I have to do but I just can’t manage my time well. If I’m being honest I let myself get distracted by a lot of things when I should be productive. I set tasks in my calendar to do for the week and I barely meet up. I feel like my life would be a lot better if I were more organized.

Taking Care Of Myself

I think y’all are beginning to understand how much of a mess I can be and believe me when I say day-to-day. So, I love to take care of myself, but I only do the basics (read the part about anxiety and stress above). Anything that requires me to do extra beyond washing and moisturizing my body, I see as a lot of work. My skin however has been surviving despite my negligence. But for how long? A few days back, I realized that my hair was damaged and my hair loss scared me. I realized after checking for help that stress and too much tension while manipulating myself were the culprits. Now hair breakage is normal, but when you shed hair a lot, that’s scary. So yeah, my hair is unhealthy and I have to fix it or lose it. Of course, I freaked out, but that’s nothing new.

Presently, I’m not entirely happy with myself, but neither am going to throw myself out in the trash. I know I’m getting no worksheet that helps me magically work this out because getting better takes a lot of hard work and commitment. My friend told me that there would always be things that are out of our control, but some things we can control, like reading books, eating well, taking care of our body and hair, making a work schedule, and sticking with it, exercise, or do yoga, and so on. To become better is therefore personal decision to do all that I can take that’s within my capability. Do my best and leave the rest they say.

This reminds me, I’m aware that I haven’t written a story or a poem in a very long time, instead, all the writings I do these days are work-related and I haven’t done photography as much. That is why I will like to take another route from here on out, starting from this post. I’ll be coming in here to dump my thoughts. I don’t mean to pour out every impression or try to bemoan my existence. Lol. I’ll just be sharing snippets of the things I do, books I’ve read, songs I’m jamming to, and how I get through life. Like doing reality checks now and again.

I hope you have a beautiful day. Try to be better for yourself, not for anybody – although people can inspire you. Make sure the conviction comes from you.

Sending love and light,

Until next time.

PS. I’ve started taking care of my hair. It would be a while before it gets better, and I’m looking forward to it.


Phone photography of a gas station
Shot with my phone and edited on snapseed
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    I didn’t think it was possible after all the time I spent wandering and searching for anybody who could understand me, or even see me.

Thursday Talk Series| Live and Love Your Life By Noah

Holla fellas. It feels good to be back this thursday. I’d give you a high five, but you know that’s not possible. Hope you’ve had an awesome week so far. My biggest takeaway this week about life: We can evade reality, but we cannot evade the consequences of evading reality – Ayn Rand.

I’m beyond excited to have Noah here. I thought this introduction would be my easiest yet but mehn I thought wrong. When I first met Noah years ago in Kaduna, it was the breezy, hello and goodbye kinda meeting. He was the boy next door…very cliché, or so I thought (wrong, again). He’d acknowledge my presence with a smile, a nod, or a few words sometimes. However, there were days when he was withdrawn, I felt like condensed air or a fly on the wall. Because he sings beautifully, I suspect a tune plays in his head that shuts out the world. “Yeah, whatever, I don’t care, ” but I did, a lot more than I cared to admit. Maybe I wore him down with my charming/annoying self, or maybe he and his folks took me on as a charity case (I was the new crazy Lagos girl), but things got better. I’ve gotten to know Noah and it has been precious. He is one of my book/music plugs; we have almost the same taste to my surprise (hooked me up with Tomi Adeyemi, Kevin Kwan, Laini Taylor, The Chainsmokers, Calum Scott, etc, and I shared my pancakes with him). He’s a yogi (the serious ones unlike me), and he grows all kinds of plants (he gave me my first lovely aloe vera bush, Catherina, and still helps me with her because I’m not a good plant mom). He’s diligent, dependable, has a wicked sense of humor (aka bad mouth), and can sing every song that Adele has released. Let’s meet Noah☺️


Q. Can you introduce yourself and what you do?

A. My name is Noah Yari. I am a consultant with an organization that mentors entrepreneurs.

Noah Yari in his traditional attire
Noah Yari


Q. Why do you do your job, and would you rather do something else?

A. I do it because I’ve discovered that Ihave a passion for helping people. I get to meet and interact with such beautiful souls and help them rewrite their stories. It’s very fulfilling work. I love what I do. I wouldn’t change it.


Q. What have you accomplished so far that has made you proud?

A. First of all, I don’t believe that you have to accomplish something grand to be proud of yourself. I would say my biggest accomplishment is overcoming depression, self-doubt and anxiety. I used to be quite a basket-case. LOL

Q. What do you appreciate about yourself and what would you like to CHANGE?

A. What I appreciate most about myself is my will power. I’ve realised that I am my only problem and I am the only solution .

Q. Would you consider yourself an introvert or an extrovert and why?

A. I would describe myself as an introvert, mostly because everyone I know says so. I enjoy my own company but I also enjoy the company of others, especially when we are on the same altitude.

Q. If you win a million dollars, what would you do?

A. I’d buy my parents a new house. They deserve that much.

Q. I’ll What do you feel is the difference between living and existing?

A. I always answer this question with that old saying ‘the grass always looks greener on the other side’. I feel people who believe this are those who are just existing and waiting for life to happen to them. I believe that someone who is truly living won’t have the time to compare his ‘grass’ with others because they’ll be too busy watering theirs and making life happen. Don’t wait for life to happen to you, happen to life, and just enjoy the ride, that’s living.

Q. What was the last book you read and what can you say about it?

A. The Girl With The Louding Voice by Abi Daré. It’s a coming of age story about a poor girl with big dreams who refused to be a victim of her circumstances. What I love most about it is that it was written by a Nigerian and set in Nigeria. It was utterly refreshing.

I always answer this question with that old saying ‘the grass always looks greener on the other side’. I feel people who believe this are those who are just existing and waiting for life to happen to them… someone who is truly living won’t have the time to compare his ‘grass’ with others because they’ll be too busy watering theirs and making life happen. Don’t wait for life to happen to you, happen to life, and just enjoy the ride, that’s living.

Noah Yari on Thursday Talk Series

Q. Do you believe aliens exist, if yes, what are they like?

A. I believe aliens exist because the size of the universe is in comprehensively large. It can’t be just us. I don’t know what they’re like but if I were to guess, I’d say they’re not that different from us on the inside. By this I mean they have souls and can experience love, sorrow and pain. I believe they have brains too!

Q. What is that thing that you see as an obstacle which can stop you from having success?

A.The only thing that can stop me from achieving success is not a ‘thing’ really. It’s God. Only the Big Guy/Gal can stop me.


Thank you, Noah, for showing up and I didn’t even have to resort to threats😂 It’s a lazy Thursday guys and I could use a break. If you are still here, thank you so much for reading. Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment.

You can follow Waking Dreams on Instagram

I promise❤️✌️🏾
  • Left Behind
    The abandoned church stood like a man awaiting trial.
  • How To Live Like A Hero
    And the pressure keeps growing and growing and growing until you feel like you are moments away from exploding.
  • The Story of How I Met Mo-Isu
    The apparition introduced himself as Mo.
  • Saturdays Are For Weddings
    It is an unspoken rule that Saturdays are for weddings in Nigeria.
  • On How To Tell Stories Of Hope
    I didn’t think it was possible after all the time I spent wandering and searching for anybody who could understand me, or even see me.

Thursday Talk Series On Lara of The Wildfire

Rigozo

Fam! Lately, my thoughts are so random, all over the place, and I accuse my mind of deliberately playing ping-pong just to mess with me. I decided to do a bit of self-reflection the other day, you know, ask myself tough questions like, ‘Is it that time of the month? Bank account gathering dust? Did I put on weight or did my jeans shrink? Valid questions. So, I got my answer but I didn’t like it one bit. Lo and behold, I’m suffering from an acute case of nostalgia. Sucks! Now that I have been diagnosed, I just want to find the cure and get well. But now my other self is looking at me and tutting because she says I can only feel better without my memories. I completely agree with her. I think selective amnesia is the way forward, except I can’t just keep the good memories and get rid of the bad. For the time being I’m stuck hauling my nostalgia around like some twisted trophy.

Moving on. Today I have Lara and I’m excited that she’s here as always. I’ve come to understand that people are a lot like mold, they can be found everywhere. However, quite a few of them stick around you and become something more. That’s why Lara of the Wildfire, as she prefers to be called, reminds me of music in all the years that I’ve known her. Sometimes Lara is like a concerto featuring an orchestra of strings, keys, and horns. Other times she’s a solo flute with dark haunting notes. Or a she’s a soft hum you’d have to strain very hard to listen to or else she’d slip away when you least expect, and all that will be left is a terrible ache. She’s like the kind of music that leaves you feeling more than you bargained for. Lara also loves stargazing, writes love letters to the moon, keeps a cat or two as her familiar, and crushes on book characters.😌


Q. Can you introduce yourself and what you do?

A. Heyyyy! My name is Agbaje Olohuntosin Omolara. Most people call me Lara, a few people call me Shukrah, but I really prefer Lara of the Wildfire. It’s quite a mouthful, but it’s such a sexy name! I’m a content manager, so this means I create content for different brands. Blog content, social media content, email content and the works. I’m also training to become a product designer, because tech is where the money’s at, yo!

Lara sitting at a high point in Ibadan
Agbaje Olohuntosin Omolara

Q. Why do you do your job, and would you rather do something else?

A. I started in the world of content creation because of my natural flair for writing. I studied Chemistry at The University of Ibadan, yeah? But after graduation, I started getting writing gigs and it just went on from there. Currently, I’m hella tired of the content world. I’m a creative writer above all else, but this job is sucking the joy out of writing for me, and I’ll very much like to stop before that happens. And that’s the real reason why I am training to be a product designer.

Q. What is the best thing about what you do?

A. Seeing as I’m tired of the job, this might be difficult to answer. But if I absolutely have to, I’ll say the best thing about it is the fact that I get to do it from home. I honestly can’t imagine a world where I have to leave my house every day for work. Am die, mehn.

Q. What do you appreciate about yourself and what would you like to change?

A. I absolutely love how creative I am, especially with words. I can make a story out of any situation and that keeps me entertained, you know? Reality can be too much a lot of times, these stories I tell myself kind of make things easier. What I would love to change…well. I tend to be very forgetful, geez! I would definitely want to change this.

Q. Do you consider that people are basically bad or basically good?

A. Good or bad? Wow. That’s an overly simplistic way to categorize people that are anything but. I don’t believe one person is just good, or that another is just bad. I strongly believe that good and bad is something that we all carry within us, and what we exhibit is the side we nurture. Besides, we never really know what we’ll do in a situation until we’re actually living in it. Will I do the ‘good’ thing when xxx happens? Honestly, there is no telling. I could be a monster.

Q. What kind of people do you allow into your circle?

A. Kind people. I love love kind, deliberate people. Also, I have a natural affinity for writers, readers and dreamers. I kind of just meet them and we decide to do life together.

Q. What have you accomplished so far that has made you proud?

A. I recently published my debut book, Letters, Stamps and Seals, and that book is literally a part of my soul set on paper for the whole world to see. I was freaking terrified before it was published, but I’m also damn proud of myself for what I have done with that book.

Lara at her book launch, Letter, Stamps and Seals

Q. What two things do you think of the most each day and why?

A. (Insert laughing emoji) Food and money na. I never know what to eat, and I like food die! So that’s kind of a recurrent thought. I’m always thinking of money as well, because tbh, money can solve A LOT of your problems! To quote Ari, “Whoever said money can’t solve your problems must not have had enough money to solve em.”

Q. If money was not relevant, what would you do all day?

A. I’ll read! Fantasy, YA, Sci-Fi, Thriller,Poetry, any damn thing that catches my eyes, I’ll read it! I can already picture me lounging all day, reading, drinking tea and eating cake. I’ll also travel a lot and take a lot of landscape pictures. To paraphrase something one of my favorite IG poets said, I have a spinning compass where my heart should be. If money isn’t an issue, I’ll let that compass take me everywhere.

I recently published my debut book, Letters, Stamps and Seals, and that book is literally a part of my soul set on paper for the whole world to see. I was freaking terrified before it was published, but I’m also damn proud of myself for what I have done with that book.

Agbaje Olohuntosin Omolara on Thursday Talk Series

Q. If like a movie your life up to this point is played for you to watch, describe how you’d feel about it?

A. I’d probably say something along the lines of ‘Why the fu*k am I being made to watch this?” while I cringe and try not to die from second-hand embarrassment.


Thank you Lara for the interview, it was my pleasure and all the best with product designing. And thank you guys for showing up every Thursday.❤️

Follow Lara

I’m reading Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged, and the book has taken over my life. Literally. It’s Thursday already, you see what I’m saying. The last thing I remember was diving into the book, and that was Monday. A little something from that corner.

It’s yours💕
Picture of the week

 

Thursday Talk Series on How Musti Interprets The World

Rigozo

Fam! How are y’all doing? Happy New Month of September 🥰. I guess some of us entered this month with enough energy to power the entire Lagos mainland, while some had to drag themselves over the threshold. I can speak for myself when I say the past two weeks were awesome. Stressful? Of course, but I had amazing company and just top-of-the-shelf good vibes. So I was able to enter this month with a ton of reserve positive energy just in case things move south. Whatever means you had to employ to step into this month, I am super excited that you are here, and on behalf of today’s participant, I’ll share a poem at the end to celebrate the month🔥🔥🔥

Now we are here, I don’t think there’s an authentic way to introduce Musti, our guest today, without sounding like I’m making things up. So settle down because this will take a while.

Good, if you follow TTS, then you know I talk about first meetings making a lasting impression on me. However, meeting Musti for the first time was one of the exceptions. I think I forgot his name and face about 5mins later the first time we met. Also, nothing remarkable happened the second time, or the third, or the fourth time or the fifth time. Then suddenly, like an idea forming in my subconscious, one moment he wasn’t there, and the next he was there. His presence was very audible and refused to be ignored. From books to poems to songs and movies, there’s always something Musti wants to share; as if he can’t help it and he has made a vow to not keep all of the beautiful things he has stumbled across in this world to himself. One day I realized that I also couldn’t help but lean closer to hear him talk about a beloved book character, or mirror his enthusiasm for a renowned poet, or sing along, albeit in disharmony to our favorite cartoon songs, or make a complete fool of myself serenading to strangers because Musti, he would be right beside me doing the same madness. Musti has a kind heart and a loving nature, and he’s fond of sitting in quiet places contemplating who sang it better – Frank Sinatra or Rihanna. He’s also an apt teacher and a rascal. Okay, I’ll allow you to meet him now.


Q. Can you introduce yourself and what you do?

A. Yes, I can! My name is Mosi ‘Musti’ Gomina, the treasure of the heavens and earth. What I do is interpret—and I can do it with everything. At the moment, that means research, writing, data analysis (I call it Datacrafting), reading, sleeping, being God’s favourite baby, et cetera.

Mosi Musti Gomina at a wedding reception
Mosi ‘Musti’ Gomina

Q. Why do you do your job?

A. I love it! I do many things, to be honest, but they are all one thing for me—interpreting (or making sense of the world). So, I love it. And that’s why I do it.

Q. What is the best thing about what you do?

A. Interpretation is something that requires distinguishing truth from falsehood, pretensions from practicalities, people from puppets. Also, I think it is marvelous that men can think, and write, and sing, and paint, and eat, and sleep, and every other thing that we do. To capture all that with texts or digits—that’s magic and more. The best thing about all these? I am changing the world, redefining and rebuilding its foundations.

Q. What’s the difference between living and existing?

A. And here is where I quote Tupac: to have something worth living and dying for. So, for me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. In other words, knowing and accepting my true identity, no masks or mascaras, no veils, nothing but the truth, this is living. All else is dust and dung.

Q. Do you think we have a greater purpose or are we just waiting for our turn to die?

A. Greater purpose, absolutely! My Dao is Christ, so my opinion here is a no-brainer.

Q. What was the last book you read?

This is the first difficult question. I read many books concurrently. But I follow multiple Xianxia novels, so Emperor’s Domination and Library of Heaven’s Path?

Q. What two things do you think of the most each day?

A. This is easy. I think about God—how awesome He is to make wings fit eggs, roars fit cats, minds fit dust, and every other wonderful transformation on Earth and Heaven. The second is my immediate family. There’s a love that we can only feel with family.

Q. What kind of people do you allow into your circle?

A. Hopeful people. Happy people. Kind people. Smart people. In that order.

Mosi Gomina at a wedding reception

I think it is marvelous that men can think, and write, and sing, and paint, and eat, and sleep, and every other thing that we do. To capture all that with texts or digits—that’s magic and more. The best thing about all these? I am changing the world, redefining and rebuilding its foundations.

Mosi ‘Musti’ Gomina on Thursday Talk Series

Q. What’s your idea of real success?

A. To be. Again, I lean towards something I heard Tupac say: that he is able to stare into the mirror and like what he sees. That is real success. To be everything you are, nothing less.

Q. If you could, what’s the one thing you’d change about the world?

A. Hm. Change anything and it is no longer the world as we see it. Can I change how long we have to wait for writers to finish their books?


Thank you so much Musti for this interview and for the one picture you let me have😂 And to everyone who stayed to the end, thank you very much and there’s your poem below. Have a fine Thursday.

Until next time,

Stay Jiggy❤️

Earth has not anything to show more fair:
Dull would he be of soul who could pass by
A sight so touching in its majesty:
This City now doth, like a garment, wear
The beauty of the morning; silent, bare,
Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie
Open unto the fields, and to the sky;
All bright and glittering in the smokeless air.
Never did sun more beautifully steep
In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill; Ne’er saw I, never felt, a calm so deep!
The river glideth at his own sweet will:
Dear God! the very houses seem asleep;
And all that mighty heart is lying still!

Composed upon Westminster Bridge, September 3rd, 1802 by William Wordsworth

What I’m Thinking About

This plate of spaghetti😭

Plate of spaghetti and sauce beside a window.

Pictures from my archives

Thursday Talk Series on How To Create Like Mage

Rigozo

My week? Well, it wasn’t bad but I really don’t want to talk about it. Today’s rant will be about something different. Can somebody please tell me how is it possible that we are in August, less than five months before we tell 2021 bye- bye. Was it not just yesterday we were all welcoming the new year? Because the year’s drawing to a close already. It’s happening, and I expect it will still throw surprises our way in the typical fashion of our world, and maybe I’m freaking out like the Barca fans because the future’s muddied with unforeseen events, but can you blame me? I’m aware that it’s no new phenomenon that time passes (flows with the natural order of the universe) but I’m known to be dramatic like that. What of you? How do you feel about the world year coming to an end? Leave a comment.

Okay, for today’s interview, we have a real OG, literally. Meet Samuel but everyone calls him OG Mage or Mage (His real name has been shelved for all of eternity). People say they know who they are and are comfortable with it, but not everyone who says this is able to show it. Mage however is the former; his aura alone speaks that he knows what he’s all about and he’s not shy to show it. From dominating a room to paying attention to the littlest details, he balances nerd and swag so well (imagine if Peter Parker got over his social awkwardness). Mage is also passionate about the things that he loves and he shares it recklessly with the people he cares about (he really can’t help it😂) and it’s so interesting to watch him in his element. Shall we?


Q. Can you introduce yourself and what you do?

A. My name Samuel Ogaba. But nobody calls me any of that, lol. On these streets, I’m know as “Mage”, “OG” or “OG Mage”. I know, I know… it’s a long story. I am from Benue State, Nigeria. The second of five children (I have an elder brother and three sisters). I’m a Software Engineer (At least that’s what my employment letter says). I work with a Canadian SaaS company. In reality, I’m a creator. I like to create things and Software was just another channel to create. But, when I’m not writing code or doing software related stuff, you’d find me Making music (writing, composing, recording, mixing and mastering etc.); indulging in creative arts (I draw, paint and meddle with some other art forms) and gaming (I’m definitely trying to go pro with this);

Samuel Ogaba (Mage) in a park
OG Mage Samuel Ogaba

Q. Why do you do your job, and would you rather do something else?

A. Like I said, I’m a Software Engineer. I’d rather be living the baby boy life and collecting royalties from the things I’ve created but the universe is delaying my application for that. 😒
Honestly, I’d rather be an artist, in all forms I’m capable of. But Software pays the bills so who am I to complain.

Q. What is the best thing about what you do?

A. Best thing about Software is how it creates solutions to individual and business needs. I believe everyone has received some form of value from software. Being able to read this write-up online is an example.

Mage on his way to work as a Software Engineer
Mage-sama

Q. What kind of people do you allow into your circle?

A. You’d find that the people in my very small circle are like-minds with positive energy who are always willing to support and uplift each other. My friends are family.

Q. What do you appreciate about yourself and what would you like to change?

A. The thing I appreciate most about myself is my resilience, persistence, and positive attitude towards life in general. I amaze myself sometimes. I also appreciate the fact that I’m intellectually endowed. ☺️😎.

Q. Do you think we have a greater purpose or are we just waiting for our turn to die?

A. I can’t say for certain, but while I’m alive I intend to live life to the fullest and make sure that my kids have a better life than I do.

Q. If money was not relevant, what would you do all day?

A. Travel. Make music. Create Art. Find new food recipes to attempt. And play games 🤓

Q.What’s your idea of real success and how can it be achieved?

A. I don’t think I have my own “idea” of success per se. But if I set out to do something, and I accomplish that thing, that is success. I don’t need to succeed on a grand scale to be successful, I think. But that’s just my take. One thing is, I definitely don’t directly associate money with success unless what you set out to do, is make money. I think money is a side effect of the things we do. So I focus on making impact and creating value and that creates wealth, I think. So, in this rambling of mine, I’d say, my “idea” of success would be how much positive impact I’m able to make, while I’m here and when I’m gone.

Q. What’s your biggest complaint about the country?

A. The irresponsibility of our leaders. There are more detailed problems in the country, but I believe our leaders are major enablers of our problems while at the same time, not being subject to it. The country is starting to choke the people and we continuously have to learn to adapt to inconveniences until that’s all we know.

Mage at an outdoor event

I don’t need to succeed on a grand scale to be successful, I think. But that’s just my take. One thing is, I definitely don’t directly associate money with success unless what you set out to do, is make money…So I focus on making impact and creating value and that creates wealth, I think.

Samuel Ogaba (OG Mage) on Thursday Talk Series

Q. If like a movie your life up to this point is played for you to watch, describe how you’d feel about it?

A. Make no mistake, it WILL be a cringe fest 😬… I don’t think I want to re-watch myself make all those bad decisions, relationships and corniness 😂. But, It’ll definitely make a killer move for everybody else. Maybe I’ll write an autobiography one day. For anyone who’s interested in finding out more about my boring self, look up @ogmageofficial on IG, and @ogmageofficial on twitter 👀 (yes, twitter 😎).


Thank you Mage for the interview, it’s my pleasure to have you here and good luck with creating. For everyone reading this, arigatou and thank you. Have a terrific Thursday.

Follow OG Mage

Graphics art created with Canva
A sneak peek at the content I’m creating for my blog.

I’m being intentional about creating memories. That’s my size 40 shoes chilling at the beach😭😂

Don’t forget to leave a comment❤️

Glucose D or Cocaine | Danta’s Letters#2

Rigozo

Dear Ogonne!

Have you entered for a competition even though you knew the odds were against you? I have. A long time ago when I was in primary school I participated in a race – we were having practice for the school’s annual inter-house sports. As a kid I was bow legged; a small puppy could run between my legs with ease because they couldn’t come together without putting extra effort. I walked around with legs like parentheses, like a pregnant woman close to her due date. It wasn’t much of a problem when I wore the standard uniform which was a gown and a bucket hat, but because we wore t-shirts and shorts during practice, it was quite obvious that my knees repelled each other; as if there was a magical force field keeping them apart, – Thou shall not pass!

When I signed up for the race, I was jittery and my heart pounded in my chest. All around me different activities were going on. The kids were running wild and the teachers tried to keep things moving amidst the chaos. That day I wanted a price which was guaranteed as long as I participated, and that was what made me fight down my fear. After the race, I was so excited (even though I didn’t win), my cheeks were flushed, eyes wide and hands outstretched for my price. The teacher in charge of the race scooped snowy white glucose D powder into my palm. Even now I can remember the taste of it, a rush of sugar and melting ice. One of my most memorable childhood moments was getting high on glucose D and giving off the impression that I was consuming cocaine like in the movies.

My darling girl, what is that thing which you want and are willing to do all that you can to get? There’s this African proverb that says, ‘To try and to fail is not laziness.’ I want you to go after the things that you desire for yourself. You don’t what to live your life plagued with regrets because you didn’t try, no matter what the outcome may be. Do the best that you can and your reward will be sweet.

Love,

Danta

Here’s the one that was shared after the race.

Photo Credit: Pexels