Photowalk in Badagry: Badagry Heritage Museum and 1st Story Building

On the 21st of May, I joined a group of photographers on a photo walk to Badagry in March.
It was a wonderful experience hanging out professional photographers and hobbyist like myself.

Our first stop was the Badagry Heritage museum which was the first administrative office in Nigeria constructed in 1863 was used as the office of the District Officer from 1865.


Next stop was the first story building in Nigeria.


The best part of the trip was the down to earth atmosphere. Every one was so cool and the professionals were eager to share tips with us hobbyist.

Visiting a slave museum always fuel anger in me, especially when you hear about how our forefathers sold their brother and sisters into slavery. The worst is listening to the value of human lives back then. 

It was an interesting photowalk and worth the value, N7500.

Part 2 coming up shortly.


Still shining teeth

So it was a day of food, dance and laughter with friends.
Sometimes I forget how awesome by closest friends are.

I am not one for birthday parties, so wasn't looking forward to one.
I just wanted to spend time with my friends and just eat food all day.
Well that was all we did, except for the 2 hours we spent at Lekki Leisure Lake enjoying the fresh air as we were already filled with food by the time we left the house.

As there was no Coke and Fanta to decorate the table, my awesome friends made me shine teeth to this.

Thank you all for the wishes, grateful for it all.
Cheers to many more years of teeth shining.


Oh, Hello 30!

Oh hello there,
So happy you are finally here.
I've been waiting on you for some time now.
Ever since I turned 25 I must say.
I felt you over my shoulder this last few months.
I saw your shadow in front of me with each decision and every step I made.

Since the first of January 2015, everyone has always reminded me that you were coming.
I should get married someone of them said.
What are you doing still single, some asked.
What is the next step for you?, I heard.
The pressure has been insanely crazy, but I have been "unlooking".
I shall not be pressured to do that which I am not ready for.

My 20′s have been great
My 20's was about learning who I am, finding my voice and learning how to use it.
The past decade was about me, and I am ready for this next one to be about much more.

Dear 30,
You are my milestone year.

I want you to be about finding love and building my own family.
I am ready for this turning of a page and fully embracing the next chapter of life.
I think we will be good for each other, you and I.
I see us accomplishing a lot together
I see us embarking on a lots of adventures together and evolving together.

My spirit welcomes you.
I am humbled at the wisdom that comes with you.
I do not know what lies on the road ahead of me, but I will embrace it all.
So, let’s do this. Here’s to thirty!


Underneath the Mask

"To love me, you need to scratch deep beyond the surface. For only then do you find the beautiful soul underneath the mask."
To some I am cold.
Yes I may appear cold, because even though I am a talkative if I am not cool with you. I might not even utter a word to you.

I call myself an "introverted extrovert".
If you are my friend, you know that I am one down to earth person.
I am full of life and adventurous to the best of my ability.

I have been called a bitch countless times.
My profession doesn't help much.
There are just those moments when I have to stop been sweet Lara and do the dictates of my job.

It's hard to be happy all the time.
Lagos drains you.
Every thing in Lagos leaves you exhausted...the traffic, toxic people, the heat, the humidity.

I learnt to wear this mask of mine a long time ago. It is my shield from pain. Lately silence has been my shield.

People hurt you and get mad at you for keeping quiet.
For not loosing it.
I kind of have a sharp tongue, so I avoid saying that which tongue cannot hold back.

If you are patient with me.
If you will see that soul
Underneath the mask.


My tale of 2 towns: **Experience as a Muslimah

Alhaj concentrate on your work, he said.
I wasn’t sure he was talking to me so I did not respond.
40 mins after…Alhaja you were told to stop writing and you continued, he said.
Why are you calling me Alhaja? I asked.
Because you tied a scarf (in this case a pashmina) on your head, the lady sitting directly opposite me replied.
I looked at her and then at him to confirm this statement and he smiled.
In Lagos, you are automatically tagged a muslim the moment a scarf is weaved around your head and if you are a Christian you are labelled an “SU”.
There is this level of respect that is accorded to women who are assumed to be religious. Scarf tying, veil covering and hijab wearing woman is considered a religious one.
The Area boys do not sexually harass you, you hear words such as “This one na SU/Alhaja oh” when you come across them.
In Ilorin….
I did not know that you are a Muslim; he said as I walked past him with a kettle to perform my ablution for the Asr prayers.
So you are a Muslim, another said when I told him my name. Why did you assume I am not a Muslim, I asked.
You are not wearing a hijab, he replied. But I am tying a scarf, I replied.
Well for us an hijab is what signifies you as a Muslim, a scarf round your head may be for fashion or you are covering your undone hair, he said.
I did not grow in a hijab wearing family, I replied and that does not make me less of a Muslim because I am wearing a cap. Well that is what we use in identifying our women, he replied.
Actually from what I am told my method of tying the pashmina on my head looks more like a fashion accessory than hair covering.
I cannot say I fault the views held in any of these towns, yes Lagos is a more liberal town. Any form of head covering for women is acceptable as religious. But for Ilorin, there is a standard in Islam which is followed. And no matter how we liberal muslim will like to have, there is still a standard. My mum and her siblings frown upon scarf tying, I probably would have become an hijabite at some point in my life. But I know my family, they won't even marry me off to a man who will want me to wear one. Their reason is story for another day.
But for one I don’t see myself any less of a Muslim simply because I do not wear an hijab. My pashima tying which I have since discarded since I moved back to Lagos is enough for me.

Benin Republic: A Pit Stop At a Cathedral in Porto-Novo

I cannot for the name of me remember the name of this cathedral we visited in Porto-Novo, not even Sandra who was looking for a Reverend Father to bless her newly purchased rosary can remember the name of the cathedral. You see this is Sandra's first time in a church since her accident, I practically dragged her into the church.

I always find religious houses fascinating especially cathedrals, there is always this attention paid to every detail of the structure.