Monday, June 28, 2010

Life...or something like it (At least I don't live on a dumpsite)

"Life or something like it" is the title of an Angelina Jolie movie where she plays a ditzy blonde reporter who is told she's gonna die so she lives life to the fullest.....or something like that, can't really remember. The basic message behind it was we're all gonna die, fug everything and enjoy yourself. I got to thinking about that one day I thought what if you're told you'll be dead in say a week and you decide to live it up, do all the things you've always wanted to do, some good, some bad and then you don't die. You live...for a very long time for that matter, say for another 60, 70 years, you'll have to spend all that time atoning for whatever crap you got up to in that one halcyon week when you thought your whole world was gonna end. So really, that whole cliche of "life is short, enjoy yourself' is very dangerous. Life is not short, life is very, very long and you better treat it with care or else you'll spend a long time regretting many things.

It's not all doom and gloom this morning, I'm actually in a fabulous mood. I got my hair did yesterday and I gotta tell you, its on point! I'm looking all kinds of fierce (Manix 08035274712, tell him I sent you). I just took an exam for entry for Associate Membership of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and I'm pretty sure I aced it, my birthday is in 2 weeks, one of my besties is getting married soon so a whole crew of besties are coming into town for a wild week, work is good, family is great, finances...fantastic! In other words I have a LOT to be thankful for, but a lot of people do not....

I spent the whole of last night watching the BBC documentary "Welcome to Lagos" and to say it was shocking was an understatement. Every day I have something to complain about; can't find anything to wear to work; the commute is annoying; colleagues are getting on my nerves; brought turkey instead of chicken as lunch; clients are making me wanna tear my hair out; don't have enough money to go have drinks after work so I decide to go home instead and I'm stuck in traffic for 4 hours........All these pale into insignificance when you watch human beings scrabbling like ants over other people's rubbish and living on a dump site. It really puts life in perspective. That documentary is a must-see, the people that were portrayed on there and the communities they inhabit are a mere 30 minutes from where I live, yet it seems like 2 different worlds. Since I saw it, things have happened this morning that would normally upset, didn't even make me turn a hair

I stubbed my toe getting outta bed this least I don't live om a dumpsite
There was traffic on the way to least I don't live on a dumpsite
A huge mistake was made on a client's account, heads must roll and the most likely head is least I don't live on a dumpsite

Seriously! It's a great mantra, when I prayed this morning one of the things i was thankful for was the fact that I did not live on a dumpsite. It brings home the fact that I'm living this comfortable life and these people are living "life or something like it". A Hammer Horror version of what I live. After watching people living like animals practically on my doorstep, I've resolved to do something about it and I'll need help, a lot of help. I'm not sure how exactly I'm gonna do what it is I have to do, I just know somehow its gonna get done. People need help, so many people need help and the things we think are trash are somebody else's gold.

I've already spoken with the President of a charity called Confraternity of Friends for Humanity Association (COFFHA) of which my mum is a member and they have pledged their support towards whatever I come up with. I've spoken with the partners at my frim and they have also pledged their support. Basically I'm going to start a charity of my own to contribute towards these people's lives, my charity is not going to deal with anything financial but solely goods i.e. clothes, shoes, bags, hats, pots, pans, plates, cutlery, notebooks, furniture, accessories......anything and everything that anybody can donate to alleviate their suffering a little bit. Its going to be a long road, I can't just march into these disadvantaged communities and start doling clothes out of a suitcase, I have to liaise with the Lagos State Government, with charities already operating in that area, the local groups and their leaders, incorporate a charity and fulfil all the requirements. So its a work in progress that I intend to devote all the time that I have to. When it's all properly set up and I have some sort of structure in place, I will put up all necessary information up here and an address where donations can be sent to (remember, nothing financial, only goods).

I don't know why this has affected me so much, best believe I'm as shallow as they come, I have about as much depth as a thimble and my selfishness is legendary, but there's something about watching people scrabbling against all odds not to buy the latest car or Brazilian hair or a house in Lekki or any of that superficial nonsense, but simply to survive, to go to bed and have the luxury of waking up, to even find somewhere to go to bed. That kind of poverty is humbling and even Scarlett O'Hara (another famously selfish individual and my personal literary heroine)would not be able to ignore it.

At every point in our lives we hear the voice of God....last night I think I heard mine.


  1. Hmm there are so many things to comment on. Interesting post sha.
    lol at live life to the fullest cos you never know when you're going to die. Its true, I think one should. Most times though its just an excuse for bad behavior when it simply means you should treasure the simple things in life and devote your time and energy to good and worthwhile issues. anyone that does bad lol and lives long well, hehe, jokes aside, they've got to sleep on their own bed .

    Yay! Its good to know that you and everything in your life is going on point! We're with you on praying for good results, and that you're head will not roll for the mistake. Pele about your toe and I would definitely love to do donate, ill stay on your blog for the details. I think its a great idea and that you took the initiative, I watched Welcome to Lagos too, I was touched on one hand and slightly annoyed cos it wasnt hundred percent a real depiction of Lagos. It still made me think, and it really up till today, thank God that the life I have known has been vastly different. I think this comment is getting too long lol but oh yeah one more thing...hilarious about you being selfish and stuff, lol it must be true (that you're admitting it with so much candor) but it just goes to show, you may not be as selfish as you thought :)

  2. There's nothing much to add to your post, except to wish you loads of luck and favor for your charity. That's a great idea.

  3. I'm very touched by this and very proud of you. I wish you the best and God Bless you abundantly as you've humbled yourself! If I move over eventually, hopefully I can help out!

  4. @Miss Natural, no biggie, I love good, long comments. Thank you for all you wrote and your kind words, I really hope I'm able to do this to the best of my ability.

    @Myne Whitman, thank you so much

    @Miss FlyHigh merci my dear, please definitely get in touch with me whenever you do, I need all the help I can get.

  5. Aww Babe I am so glad you where inspired by the TV show. I was inspired as well and I am doing my own little part in helping those I can back home. Maybe i'll move back soon and join you! Good job babe!

  6. Good to know everything is going good and you have identified it and thanked God for it! Many of us take stuff 4 granted! Good luck with setting up your charity mon amie! Please update us oin how it goes...that you are donating stuff and not money is excellent.


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