Sunday, 30 March 2014


Hello Hi,

It's been an absolute pleasure writing and knowing that people read, so thank you again and for those of you that laughed at my fall and boots, enjoy (lol). Last week, I said I was going to tell you why I have a different feeling about the snow now. Well, here it is below. I hope you a meaning in it too. Enjoy my dear friends, please share and leave your comments below, you can also click on the 'google' icon to recommend as well as follow me on twitter @vivio_gogo for regular updates -

It was another Sunday morning; the snowfall was so heavy that I had to struggle to make my way to the church and so, I arrived late. After the Mass, I headed for the usual morning coffee and tea that the church provided at the adjacent hall. Close to the entrance, I saw an old lady trying to open the door to get into the hall building. I quickly recognized her because of her large hat, which she  usually wore, as the woman who turned 78 years old last Sunday; we had sung a “happy birthday” song to her during the tea/coffee time last week. So I ran up to her and held open the door for her to go in. She smiled as she thanked me, showing her dark gum and a few gaps as a result of missing teeth. Although her dentition was not perfect, there was something refreshing about the way she smiled. Her smile was warm and had a way of insinuating that she must have immensely enjoyed her youth, just as she was enjoying her 70’s now. We began to chat, grumbling about how terrible the weather had been for the past few days and how much we longed for sunlight. She told me that she had been indoors the whole week and complained about how the snow had restricted her from doing her regular exercise; she had to avoid the risk of slipping on the snow, she said.  I readily agreed with her, recounting to her also of how I had barely left my house that week except for compulsory classes. She looked astonished and asked me why I had decided to stay at home almost all week. I was perplexed by her question, given that we stayed in the same town, which had the same bad weather, that same week. After a few moments of blinking, I responded, “But I can fall when walking on the snow too.” “In fact I have fallen once”, I added, remembering ‘my first snowy experience’ (or ‘the snowy walk of shame’, as one of my friends referred to it last week). At that point she shook her head, making me even more confused, before she went on to say “You see my child, I am old now and so if I fall, I could break my hip which may not heal but you….you are still very young. If you fall, nothing stops you from rising. So do not be afraid to fall now because you have a long time ahead of you. Walk freely to wherever you want to go to now and each time you fall, get up, smile and continue walking because when you get to my age, you can no longer take such risks”.  She ended with a loud laughter. I smiled back in response, nodding throughout as if I understood her completely. When we got to the hall, we said our goodbyes and went to sit at our separate tables with our different groups of friends.
Somehow, what she had said to me remained on my mind for the rest of the day. Her words cut through me; for me, they had a deeper meaning than just slipping on the snow. They had become my own Sunday lesson, giving me a new sense of encouragement and perspective towards life, especially as I was going through a difficult period at that point in my life. Since then, I have carried those words in my heart dearly, determined to try even harder every time I thought I had failed in a quest; as such, pursuing and achieving my dreams. As for the lady, I have not seen her in a while but whenever I see her, I hope to give her a card I have kept for her which says:
Thank you, Madam Rose. I believe I am where I am today because I stopped being afraid to fall.

It was because of her words that I took the chance to go skiing with a friend two weeks ago (which I sucked at by the way). And although I know that I will never really love the snow, at least I know that every time I may slip (not too hard though), I will stand up even stronger by God’s grace.

Have a blessed week :)

Sunday, 23 March 2014

My First Snowy Experience

Hello Hi! Thank you again for visiting and reading. I do not know how many of you have seen that youtube clip - what are you doing running in the snow? Well, I thought I'd share a personal story with you all and I hope you enjoy it:-

It was late October; the weather forecast had predicted a heavy snowfall the next day. I was relatively new to the country of the famous Queen and just like similar students; I was excited to see the snow for the first time in my life. I felt thoroughly prepared for the weather, having gone shopping with my aunt for winter clothing soon after I had arrived. Of all my newly acquired purchase, I was most impressed with my new ‘grippy’ boots, as I loved to call them. They were black and not particularly attractive, but they were warm inside, had grids underneath and were comfortable. I had also got them at a good price during the shop’s sale. I remember showing them to one of my new friends, Miss A, whom with a disinterested look, said that she had never seen an uglier pair of boots in her life. I was not bothered about what she or anyone else would think about my boots when I wore them; I just looked forward to experiencing the snow wholeheartedly. So after I heard about the weather forecast, I went to bed feeling elated that night and hoping that morning would come just as white and beautiful as I had always dreamed it would be.
“Stop drumming please!” I said exasperatedly, “you’re giving me a headache, stop it!” but he continued drumming loudly and singing my name along with it. I was just about to snatch the instrument away before I woke up. It was a dream but there was actually somebody knocking on my door; it was Ivy, my new flatmate and course mate. I looked at my watch, it was 2am and Ivy was still knocking rampantly whilst calling my name “Vi, wake up!” I ran to the door, hoping there was no serious problem. My first thought was that I may have left something cooking on the electric stove, which had caused a fire. I hastily opened my door, “Is everything alright, Ivy?” I asked, panting. “It’s snowing!” she replied excitedly. “What?” I asked in shock, and she repeated even more excitedly “I said it’s snowing!” “Is that why you woke me up by 2am?” I asked angrily; she looked confused but before she could reply I had banged the door. How could she have woken me at such an hour just because of the snow? I knew I really wanted to see the snow but I loved my sleep-time and did not like to be disturbed unnecessarily.  Looking out through my window, it was snowing indeed and people were already outside making snowmen. It was such a beautiful sight that it made me smile and as I crawled back into my bed to continue my beloved sleep, I knew I would apologise to Ivy when the day was bright.
The next morning, I got ready for school putting on my ‘grippy’ boots delightedly. I had only one lecture today – English Writing, which was optional but I was happy to attend because I thought it was cool to have an English Language class, taught by an English tutor, in England. I knocked politely on Ivy’s door and waited. On previous occasions, I would have gone into her room immediately after the first knock, whether or not she responded. This time however, I waited patiently until she asked me to come in; not only because I knew I had been rude to her earlier that morning but also because I indirectly wanted to indicate to her how to knock properly on a door. I apologised to her immediately, blaming my action on a sleeping medication (that I never took) and she seemed to willingly accept my apology. I asked if she was attending the English class but she said no, stating that her command of English was very good, thus she did not need to. I headed for the lecture thinking to myself, that I also had a good command of English (although some of you might disagree), even better than hers.
I sat at the first row as I usually did in most of my classes, not because I was a smart kid as was the norm, but because I had a ‘less-than-average’ eyesight. The instructor was a tall, slim woman with short hair. She introduced herself to the class and was just about to say something else before a voice interrupted “Excuse Ma?” I did not need to look at the person for me to realise that he was Nigerian but I turned around anyway to satisfy my curiosity. He was a dark-skinned, middle-aged looking man who wore a thick pair of glasses and even though, he was sitting, I could instantly tell that he was short. ‘Yes?’ she answered smiling; “I just wanted to ask whether we should put our phones on silent or keep it on melody” I snorted with laughter because I had never heard that phrase before – ‘keeping phone on melody’ and I thought it was hilarious even though I knew what he meant. “I’d rather you kept it on silent mode please, so that we don’t get distracted with melody” she replied cheekily. Some of my classmates giggled.
The rest of the class went on uneventfully as she talked about the importance of paragraphing and word organisation, for assignments purposes. She also talked about plagiarism and how she had once read a paper where a student had paraphrased ‘chocolate ice cream’ as ‘dark-brown-frozen-sweetness for desert’, just to avoid the penalty of plagiarism. Everyone laughed and finally the lecture came to an end. Just before leaving the class, the instructor added “Oh, I forgot! Be careful when walking in the snow because I fell on my way here. That is what I wanted to tell you earlier.” I chuckled and this time, she turned to me saying “I noticed you’ve been laughing a lot. I hope you don’t fall” to which I replied smugly “It’s not my portion” before I proceeded happily to show off my boots and the grids underneath them, to a few of my course mates that cared to look or listen.
I went to the library afterwards to borrow some books for reading, since I had no other lecture for the day. On my way back home from the library, on one of the steepy slopes of Sheffield, lo and behold I slipped and fell! Within the few seconds as I got lifted in the air during the slip, I had quick flashbacks; of when I had proudly shown off my boots severally, about how I had laughed at my teacher and of how rudely I had responded to her. Thus, it was a painful fall with so many people around me watching, not only because my butt hit hard on the cold frozen snow but also because of the deep shame I felt within. Someone helped me to get up and I walked back slowly to my room, supporting myself along the way by grabbing rails and walls, no longer deluded by my trust in my boots. Later on, I shamefully told Miss A about my fall and after laughing hard, she said “Better throw those things away”, referring to my boots as ‘things’. I did not get rid of the boots as advised until they gave up the ghost last year but I never bragged to anyone about them again. One thing was for sure though, I never laughed at anyone’s fall again.

So my dear friends, this was how my first experience in the snow went and this is the reason why I became afraid of the snow (well until I had a different experience which I will tell you about next week). Until then, thank you for reading, please share with friends and leave your comments behind, and no matter what you do this week, make sure you leave your hearts ‘on melody’! xx

Please follow me on twitter @vivio_gogo 

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Something for the Men, oh well and for the Ladies: ON THE GREENER SIDE

Hello Hi!
Thank you all for your comments last week, i found them really encouraging. Like I promised to upload writings every week as much as I can, here's new stuff. I wrote this story some time ago. You know what they say "Be careful what you wish for because you might just get it"? Well, I have wide and wild imaginations so I thought about this. Enjoy.... and please don't forget to leave your comments and share. And please follow me on twitter @vivio_gogo. Cheers!

Adanma had just rushed back from the market; sweat was pouring down her face as she carried bags containing meat, vegetables and spices that she had just purchased. She wanted to make Ofe nsala, Ikenna’s favourite soup so that he would have a pleasant surprise awaiting him on his return from his business trip at Abuja. She would have preferred not to live in Lagos; she found the city very stressful due to the excess heat, noise and heavy traffic unlike the small quiet village Orlu, which she had grown up in.  She had gone all the way from Lekki Phase 1 to Yaba market to buy the required ingredients for the soup but Ikenna was worth the effort, she consoled herself. Her feelings for him over the months had grown rapidly and she knew that he felt the same way for her too. After all that could be the only reason why he had introduced her to his family and given her the spare key to his apartment, one she had never used because prior to today she had not felt the need to. However, she really wanted to do something really nice for her man, to show him appreciation for the beautiful gifts he lavished on her regularly and generally for making her believe in love again.

After series of heartbreak, Adanma seemed to have given up on falling in love or ever trusting men again until she met Ikenna. She always smiled when she remembered that day; he had been standing in the queue at the bank where she worked. There was a very long queue because the ATM machines were not working. He was easily noticeable because of his attractive tall, dark and well-built figure. However, she had noticed something different about him; he had a very charming coolness about him that made him look so relaxed and confident even when other customers were beginning to complain loudly about the long waiting times. When it was his turn after more than hour, she apologised for the wait just as she had done with other customers and unlike them, he smiled and asked for her name. He later called her that evening to ask her out on a date, even though she did not give him her phone number and from one date to another, it turned into a serious relationship. It was the same relaxed nature of his that made her trust and confide in him, and the same cunning way with which he had gotten her phone number, which she still did not know how, that made him more interesting and appealing to her and everything else was like pure magic. They shared equal passions, had great chemistry and their love-making could not have been any better; the rest was history.
Adanma dropped the shopping bags on the floor to bring out the spare key from her handbag. As she opened the door and headed for the kitchen, she thought she heard some noise but it could not possibly be so as Ikenna’s return flight was by 7pm and it was still 4pm. She had to hurry so that the food would be ready for him just on time but she decided to quickly change into more comfortable clothes as her sweat already made her blouse stick to her chest. She entered Ikenna’s bedroom and for some seconds, she thought she may have been in a completely wrong apartment. It was either that or she was day-dreaming as she saw two naked bodies on the bed. The woman lay underneath moaning with her eyes shut while the man was on top kissing her and giving her pleasure. Adanma looked around confused; the wall, furniture and curtains all looked familiar. She took a closer look at the man again, he was Ikenna surely. It was at that moment she realised what the sound she had heard initially was, that she was certainly in the correct room and worst still, that Ikenna probably never travelled to Abuja. She stood glued to the ground not knowing whether to speak, scream, cry or even run away. They still had not seen her and the woman on the bed had started moaning more audibly and calling his name “Yes I.k! Yes!” Adanma could take no more; she tried to stick her fingers into her ears and the key dropped. The woman opened her eyes and Ikenna turned around. His eyes and mouth widened in shock and he was speechless. Suddenly Adanma felt the need to run, and so she did, leaving her ingredients in the kitchen and the key on the ground. Ikenna grabbed a shirt running after her and screaming her name “Ada, please come back! I can explain!” She did not look back; she knew she never wanted to see him alive again and that she would never forgive him. So she ran even faster with Ikenna struggling to catch up with her whilst trying to put on some trousers. She was now on the main road and trying hard to stop a car or a bike, anything that could take her far away from the evil she had just witnessed. She crossed the road to the other side, she still heard Ikenna calling her name until she heard a loud screeching noise. At this point, she turned around and saw him but he was on the ground looking unconscious. She ran back towards him, there was blood on the ground and he looked lifeless. The car that hit drove away quickly and all she could do was cry for help. Nobody came, well not until after some minutes of screaming and running around to look for neighbours and then, he was taken to the hospital.

She waited in the lobby until the doctor came out, Ikenna had lost a lot of blood and did not survive, the doctor said. She did not cry, all she could do at that moment was remember her thoughts when she had caught him in bed with the woman; when she had wished she would never see him alive and as she walked out of the hospital, she wondered if she would always blame herself for such wishful thinking.

Sunday, 9 March 2014

My first post! Just a thought!

Hello hi!,

This is my first post and I am really excited, yay!!!. This is something that came to my mind after an encounter and I could not help wondering what the world would be like if it were different for men and women. So I wrote this little thought of mine, the setting is in Nigeria but I believe that many people, independent of your nationality, can relate to it. Enjoy... and share your own little thoughts, if you may:

Recently, I overheard a conversation which I thought was funny but interesting. A group of men sat together and were complaining of the challenges African men (especially Nigerian men) faced to impress their women. A member of the group spoke loudly, “I do not understand where they (women) expect us to get such amount of money from. The way they demand, one would think we pluck money from trees” “...or co-own a bank!” another concluded. The men laughed and talked more, ranging from how they had to buy women expensive gifts including the latest mobile phones and jewellery, as well as pay for shopping sprees and holidays, and still look good as men. “The one I find the most annoying is that their Brazilian hair, the cost is enough to buy bags of building cement!” Others roared in laughter, “Seriously, it is not funny o”, he continued. “This is exactly why men steal and get into trouble. These women should learn to pity us sha
As I listened to them, I could not help but think about what the women would say. I had just returned back to Nigeria from abroad and I was quick to observe “the new look” for a lot of Nigerian women. Almost all the dark skinned women I had known few years ago had suddenly become lighter in complexion despite the increasing ozone layer depletion, resulting of course in more sunlight and heat in the country. However, many women had found ways of evading the effects of the burning sun, the scorch of which I had felt instantly from the moment I arrived at Murtala Mohammed airport in Lagos. The new redemption for the women was quite obvious though; they had subjected to the use of chemical products – “skin toning creams” they called them. These creams were however bleaching creams which ended up leaving patches of colours on the skin with time. I also noticed that being skinny was fast becoming most women’s dreams and also, almost every young woman I came across wore rather long hair extensions, high heel shoes that they seemed quite uncomfortable walking in, cleavage revealing shirts, cumbersome jewelry, alarming long nails and eye lashes, and very loud facial makeup. The overall result was that many women ended up looking like different shades of Michael Jackson and quite like “the joker” in the Bat Man movie.
What had happened to our beautiful, curvaceous and ebony Nigerian women with thick black afro hair, I asked myself. After all there was a common saying that “black is beautiful”; so why did people want to alter their natural given black skin and hairs for ones that did not even suit them. Why did these women feel to the sudden urge to go half-naked and the need to go through so much discomfort to keep up with fashion? These were the questions that went through my mind for days but with my little curious mind, I set out to discover the answers; of which I soon did. Just like the men felt the need to impress the women, these feelings were mutual for the women too. The women I spoke to also complained about how their men often compared them to the foreign women they watched on the television, how the men wanted them to still look “sexy” after multiple child births resulting to the fast rising skinny look in vogue and how majority of the men preferred “yellow girls” (light-complexioned young women), thus the skin-bleaching. Therefore, they (the women) had to step up in the game or else they would be left single and even the married ones might be dumped for the “fashionable” ones. It was puzzling to me how the words “sexy” and “fashionable” now meant being lean and boisterous in our new generation. It was also obvious that the men could barely tell the difference from the naturally beautiful women and the women masked with make-up, nor could they tell the difference between simple real gold earrings and cheap glittering long ear-fangs; in fact the flashier a woman looked, the more appealing she was to them.
These new observations spurred deep thoughts in my head with new questions. What if these women did not feel the need to impress the men with high heels and ridiculous bangles but rather with good manners and family grooming; what if these men did not feel the pressure to lavish expensively on women even though they knew they could not afford it but rather, showed genuine care and concern for the women’s welfare? What if the women only combed their clean natural hair and wore beautiful smiles on their faces instead of all the make-up and what if the men appreciated the natural looks of their women and called them gorgeous? What if fake looks and electronic gadgets were stopped being exchanged for attention and sex? Maybe, people would be easier to read, things would be clearer to see and competition for the wrong things would be reduced. Maybe, the efforts, thoughts and time incorporated into unnecessary troubles could be channeled into innovation and creativity for a better country. Perhaps, with less worries, there would be more happiness. However, these will continue to be my little thoughts until maybe people learn to be just simple. Just maybe!