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Dawn at the city..

At the sound of the cock crow, millions of Nigerians and I dash out like the hurricane to earn a living before the sun opens her eyes. We who live in Lagos,Western Nigeria know better than linger on the bed in the misty mornings. So we disentangle ourselves from the warm embrace of our loved ones, sleeping wrappers ,blankets, and pyjamas to avoid the dreaded long hours in the traffic. What huge sacrifices we make to avoid an empty wallet!
Today, I looked out at the famous Lagos Lagoon, flowing peacefully from my car seat and I marvelled at the Lagoon’s harmony with nature. As the sun rises steadily,it casts a slivery glow on the flowing waters and the trees at its bank swayed in the morning breeze.Watching this pastoral view,i ask myself ; how long would we continue to cheat nature by affording only few hours of sleep each day? Every week day,millions of Lagosians like myself struggle to get to the island through the famous Third Mainland Bridge which seems to creak under a huge load .And we have reasons to justify this mad scramble..They say the island offers great opportunities like no other place in Nigeria, others say it is like Broad street,the busnesss hub of The U.S. True,regal tall buildings housing corporate offices stand like opulent queens in places on the island like Victoria Island,Ikoyi and Lekki and careers opportunities abounds,yet the prices we pay to get to work each day are mountain high.
Traffic crawls with a snail-like movement..temper are hot and smothering but in spite of our inconveniences, we come out laughing with all our tooth..we are the happy people,you see..once tagged, “the happiest on earth”. Working on the island could make the weakest man be as tough as nails .Anyone who could endure what Lagosians go through everyday would definately have something to say about the world ‘patience ‘.To me,patience is enduring long queues in the traffic after a horrible day at work..buying cold sausages(Gala) in the traffic when you actually felt like eating delicious home dishes..and enduring nosy police checks when you know you have nothing to hide..
After spending long hours in the traffic yesterday,i arrived home tired and yawning,dismayed when i heard my mom complaining bitterly that i don’t do house chores any more…’Yinka ,since you got this job,you have grown too lazy.. you don’t do chores no more like you used to do..you should know you will be getting married soon, and no man wants a lazy woman no matter who pretty !’.So to please my dear mom,I scrubbed her kitchen clean,swept the floor ,do the dishes and cooked a dish with my back aching real hard.After I had finished my chores, I laughed heartily as my mom started saying long funny prayers for me;’you will live long,my daughter and stand tall and strong like the Iroko tree..u shall a marry a good man who will appreciate you..your life shall be fulfilling like the life of the Israelites who entered the promised land…’.
My tired body couldn’t wait to hear the end of the prayers as I sneaked into my bedroom with her sonorous voice trailing me..I heard her voice again as i showered after which I fell into a sweet dreamless sleep.Now, i wonder if mom noticed that I sleep tired and exhausted these days and that when dawn sets in,millions of Lagosians like I rise up ,yawning and tired..cheating nature yet again and paying the price of modernity !

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