Today is Sarah’s birthday. But unlike the Sarah of old, there was no spark. Amiss was the usual flair and ebullience with which she greeted you on the phone. There was no laughter in her voice, no joy. In fact, there was sadness bordering on despair.
Sarah had left work early to make the most of her special day and found herself in traffic, which dragged motionless for almost 2 hours. Her initial plan was to get petrol with which to run the generator and entertain friends and family a little later. But of course man, or in this case woman can only propose. In today’s Nigeria, especially in the bustling mega city of Lagos, it is almost pointless planning anything more elaborate than brushing one’s teeth in the morning.
And so it was that Sarah ended up without the petrol, without electricity, and without the fun and the spirit – premium, not motor – that would otherwise mark a day such as this. In her words, she was really quite fed up with life in Nigeria.
Yet, Sarah’s story is one of the milder ones. Some may even take offence at the thought that this is what someone in the same city considers to be suffering. Sadly, it is the case that many people have lost their lives or loved ones in the last few weeks to the twin evil of no light, and no fuel.
In 2016, there are certain things we should not be grappling with in Lagos.
But, as we have done many times in the past, we will soldier on, clinging tenaciously to hope, and believing that ‘this too shall pass’. For how long we will continue to live sub-human standards of life like we do at the moment is a matter for the prayer warriors in the ever increasing number of churches and mosques in Lagos.
Maybe if we collectively ask for forgiveness on behalf of Noah’s notorious son Ham, the supposed precursor of the African race, we may find succour.
In the meantime, the prayers of the ever faithful and more likely the fear of the Junior Minister for Petroleum losing his job, have together brought about temporary reprieve from our ordeal as 4 ships laden with Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) otherwise known as petrol, arrive Lagos ports awaiting discharge [read more…].
It seems then that not unlike before, ‘this too shall pass’.
Happy birthday once again to Sarah, and more strength to the hardy hustlers in Lagos who are being tested to their very core by the curse of their ancestor.