Saturday, August 30, 2014

14 for 14: Pack your bags and just go...with Wanderlust #Lara.


I think you should look out the window more often. 



Find a good picture window that gives you an unrestricted view, and throw aside the blinds or curtains. The higher up your vantage point, the better. On a sunny saturday morning, or a gentle wednesday night...lean your elbows against the window sill, drop your chin into your cupped wrists and allow your mind fleeter away...just like #Lara.

I reckon the idea sounds natural for the typical starry-eyed wanderlusts. If otherwise, you might maybe ask, 'Now what'?

Indulge the stillness for a moment and wonder where you would rather be right now. A friend of mine spent his summer lounging away on the beaches of Mexico with an easy cocktail in hand. So i've been daydreaming lately of getting lost in a Mexican folk festival. Ah....with the local Mariachi band and their women dancing away in those vibrant escaramuza colors.
Photo Source: Wiki

 The question now is, where would you rather be right now...even if just for a day or few?

Don't quickly discard the thought as idealistic or unrealistic, listing the twenty hurdles that easily seperate us from our window sill and that dreamy horizon. If you're anything like me, the older I get, the more real the hustle becomes. There are only a million and ten things that drive me crazy every single day but this post is not about entertaining those annoyances. I think that there are challenges for every living creatures - some more than others. And i think this is particurlarly so, if you happen to be bucketed into a certain category known as 'Nigerian'. But that is a different discussion altogether.

So, my soul begs for life outside of the usual struggle. To wake up in the morning somewhere different and walk a different route that isn't into nine-to-five traffic throng. To think, but not about the bills,  deadlines, and the usual survival needs. To take a break from life, in order to live life. And I thoroughly appreciate that life cannot be a holiday every day. But sometimes, somedays, my soul begs me to just pack my bags and literally just go away. And i'm wondering if there aren't many like myself...

Walking away from that window sill and coming back to real life is the sensible question of:

'How and why should i want to indulge this idea of taking a frequent break from #life'?

Lara's blog is one of my favourite Nigerian travel enthusisat's blog, and it kind of point you in the right direcction in answering some of those questions. For the simple reason, that it doesn't portrat a glossy Thomas cook holiday brochure to entice your already groaning bank account. Instead, she keeps it simple and suggests you to almost, #Keep calm, be Nigerian and Travel.

So, taking a cue from Labyrinths of Lahrah: A Nigerian travel and photography enthusiast's blog,

Here are my own simple reasons for packing up my bags ever so often:
  •  I think it's important not to get drowned in life's hustle.
  • I think it's healthy to take time out away from the noise and just #be.
  • Time-out gives me a fresh breath of direction.
  • Time-out helps me remember the few things that really matter.
  • Travelling enlightens me and gives the impression that i'm learned ;)
  • Time-out envigorates my spiritual life.
  • Travelling expands your network easily.

Here are also my own simple tips on how to make it happen:
  • I maintain a direct debit saving account for indulging my wanderlusts.
  • I used an airline credit card to rack up air-miles on everyday shopping (every little helps).
  • I frequently idle away on trip advisor to feed my lusts and get sensible traveller's tips.
  • When i can't afford an international travel, i take a local break.
  • I cut costs sometimes by lounging at a friend's place when I travel.
  • Don't travel alone. Build experiences with someone special.
  • Travel safe - it's a crazy world these days.
  • Have a good camera and maintain a physical travel photo album.
  • A video camera is also very useful to relive those experiences when i'm back home on a rainty tuesday evening. 
 I think that there is something beautific about letting your feet loose and getting lost amidst a throng of foreigners. Becoming a stranger and being fascinated all over again by the sounds of your own real dialect, and being known in a brand new sort of way.

I've only tried to sum up experiences that Lara tells better all over her blog. So, all that said, my 14-for-14 for this month, is...naturally re-introducing you to Lara's blog over here.

If Lara's blog were a book, i'd title it as 'the girl who looked out of the window'.

Have a fantastic day all...and thanks for stopping by.


*I have not properly edited this, so excuse my errors*


*****************************************************************
Intro: The 14-for-14 challange by Janyl. (Click here to familiarize yourelf with the '14 for 14 challenge'). I recently accepted this challenge to go on a quest searching for brand new blogs...with the bull-headed conviction that all creativty is not lost within the nigeria-blogsphere. And also desperate to prove that, contrary to recently popular opinion, not all of the new blog pages are uninteresting (to put it mildly). This is my eighth post into that journey.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Edelweiss....Bless my homeland forever....


Edelweiss, Edelweiss....

That song randomly popped up on my playlist....and I've had it on reply all night.

Quoting a quick wiki to jig my fading 'sound of music memories'...

"The song was Captain von Trapp's subliminal goodbye to his beloved homeland, using the flower as a symbol of his loyalty to Austria."

In the same vein, I find that it captures that sad moment where the love for 'home' starts to slowly slip out of your affections as the saddening reality of things finally dawns on you.


Every morning you greet me
Small and white clean and bright
You look happy to meet me
Blossom of snow may you bloom and grow
Bloom and grow forever
Edelweiss,Edelweiss

Bless my homeland forever.
 
Indeed, bless my homeland forever....

P.s....I've been rubbish with comments lately. Please bear with me.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

14 for 14: A Leibster's anatomy of a T.Note

Cee has graciously nominated me for the Liebster blog award, and YNC has demanded that i pick this up and divulge some potentially sensitive information about myself. Thanks guys.
I'll just go ahead and highlight my own blog as my blog review for this month's 14 for 14 challenge.

So here goes...
 
1.Real Name?
T.Notes

2.Who is T.Notes?
No different from every other blogger who has ignorantly decided to strip naked and bare soul and private opinion on the public streets of the world.wide.web. I write, not because i have figured anything out but purely in a bid to make sense of my own existence and this fine puzzlement aka life.
 
3.What do you do?
Outside of these pages, I'm the next big headed person earnestly pushing through the 9-to-5 (more like9-to-9) drudgery in a desperate bid to own just one bite-size piece of the proverbial big apple. I work as something of a number cruncher in Finance.

4.What kind of music are you into?
I'm all about the Jazz! Paris cafe, Bepop, Flamenco, Smooth vocals, Dave Koz, Latin jazz. A perfect night for me is tapping away with a live Swing & Big Band in a Blues rock lounge - Bliss. I often start and end my day with my Jazz radio app. It's 1:30am right now, and Connie Evingson & The Hot Club of Swedon are strumming some instrumental justice to 'If I had you'. Get in!!!

5.What's one of the scariest things you've ever done?
I have chronicled my journies herein of quitting a reasonably cozy job at home to chase after discontentments in a different country. Admittedly, it's not a new idea, this bold move among young people these days...but it's often not said enough how scary the whole ordeal is. If you don't have a financial cushion to fall back on, and you go straight in with honest intentions to slug things out legitimately by yourself - with nothing else except whispy dreams on your sleeves and a prayer on your lips....it's a tough adventure. But yes, i would do it all over again.

6.What do you do for fun?
I daydream of retiring at 40 with a cozy retirement fund in the bank and a striving business that keeps passion alive and discontentment at bay. In the interim, I love to travel and get lost among a throng of strangers, new cultures and the delightful music of indecipherable foreign languages...along the cobbled streets of venice or the sandy dirt cliffs of  Santorini....Air miles and Avios points are a man's best friend.

7.What was your life like growing up?
Gosh I grew up as a frightfully naughty brat. The thought of some of things i got up to are cringy. Let's just say i grew up as a very happy and restless child...and...let's leave it like that ;)

8.Do you like to plan things out in detail or spontaneous?
You honestly don't want to see my spreadsheet of life. I'm a sucker for details. I am extremely ambitious, constantly making and reviewing goals. I have a timeline for everything and take great joy in buying a new diary every December. But if I've learnt anything at all,  it's how all my best laid plans fall to pieces when I'm not hammering on heaven's doors for help.

9.Who in your life has influenced you the most? How did they do it?
That would certainly be J. She keeps me in check,  curbs my excesses and is my all round voice of reason. How does she do it? I don't know......

10.What's your favorite joke?
Haha, These Wowo Boyz have been cracking me up lately!
Here's one of my favourite ones for your viewing pleasure.


11.If you could try out any job for a day, what would you like to try?
I think it'd be interesting to live inside GEJ's fedora hat for a day...and complete the experience with the impeccable Dame P. as my first lady. I think it would be...priceless to know the thoughts behind that characteristic 'thoughtful' presidential pose.


11.If someone asked you to give them a random piece of advice, what would you say?
Try God.

12.Describe your blog with a phrase.
It's not that serious.

13.Conclusion
If you visit T.Note's blog here and i'm certain you'd also agree that at the end of the day, paraphrasing the timeless craft of Nothing Hill...

I'm also just a blog, standing in front of another blog....


 
Have a fantastic day all...and thanks for stopping by.

*****************************************************************
Intro: The 14-for-14 challange by Janyl. (Click here to familiarize yourelf with the '14 for 14 challenge'). I recently accepted this challenge to go on a quest searching for brand new blogs...with the bull-headed conviction that all creativty is not lost within the nigeria-blogsphere. And also desperate to prove that, contrary to recently popular opinion, not all of the new blog pages are uninteresting (to put it mildly). This is my seventh post into that journey. 

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Blog becomes him....

If you could do it all over again
Would you have hit that 'create blog' icon?
I don't think so.....

And somehow I wonder if that seeming tiny decision would have any impact on the person I could have been today.

Having lived all over these pages,
Cheaply served off dreams, grieves and expectations all over here...

Thing is, if you serve off the most of you,
And save some of you behind a mask,
How much insincere does that really make you?

It's easy for lines to become blurred,
For best intentions to get complicated
For pages to become people.

If I had the benefit of hindsight
Of how someday a random blog could somehow become you...

I'd have walked away from that cursor five years ago.
Problem is, then I wouldn't have walked side by side with you.

T.Notes
Anonymous

Sunday, June 29, 2014

14 for 14: About friends who become strangers…and a crazy Ghanaian blogger.


If Scarlet were to read this note, I bet she’d think this song is about her….I’d prefer to think that this note is more postively about Dentaa, one crazy Ghanaian blogger.

Dentaa spoke sometime about a certain someone who slowly fizzled from being a friend, into an acquaintance then disappeared altogether into a total stranger….and at the end of the day, she reckoned, that was just fine.

I’m not sure I ever really understood how friends degenerate into total strangers, and much less, how someone just disappears. I guess you never think about it when you are the guilty party that has intentionally broken the bonds of relationship. After all, we have candid reasons for those instances.

Like how it is ok to fall out with friends from youth because life happens as we grow up and go our separate ways. If I bumped into a childhood friend on a frizzy Wednesday afternoon, we’d have a cheerful moment of ‘Ooh,...look at you!...Wow, what’s been going on?!...We should catch up properly sometime..’, etc….then we’d go our separate ways with fond memories of childish pranks of peeping up girl’s skirts together….and that would be the end of that…a cozy smile to end a busy Wednesday…and like Dentaa said, that would be just fine.

But it’s different when we grow up and fall out with someone. Because the friends we make are more intentional, and with supposed benefit of hindsight. Your life has become your bubble, and you are intentional about the kinds of persons you want to include into your precious habitat. Someone like Scarlet….

You know how they say friends can become strangers just as easily as strangers can become friends. I agreed to meet up with Scarlet tomorrow, with vague plans of catching up and giving another purposeful effort to mend the fragmented pieces of what used to be a reasonably golden friendship. But thinking about the situation with Scarlet and thinking about Dentaa’s wise words, I sent a brief message today cancelling the lunch plan, with a vague excuse of work pressures.

I got a letter at work. I still struggle to understand how I’m now supposed to act at this new level. I go into a meeting and people expect me to have a valid opinion. They ask a question and turn to me for an opinion that will drive the business forward…decisions that inform business strategy for a company on the LSE. Problem is after these meetings, I have often looked into the mirror, and all I see is the novice child from yesterday playing grown-up. Except that we are no longer kids.

So when Scarlet asked us to meet up and catch up...It felt like kids playing commitment hide & go-seek. But that’s just the thing….as we grow up, you tend to need only people that are reliable in your sphere. You stop having time to chase anybody to be a part of the bubble that you’re doing your best to keep rolling along.

There are a few things that I do know about life. But I’ll admit that I am yet to understand how someone eats with you on a Sunday evening in your home, then refuses to acknowledge you on a Monday.. and how it boils your manly ego. I usually need to process events before I can react, so the problem lies when I cannot rationally explain a falling out. But Dentaa is right. This note should not even be validating or seeking to understanding Scarlet. And this note ought to be more Nigerian and forthrightly point such persons to the direction of the closest transformer. You know that relief when you curse someone out in Yoruba and finish off with a proper ‘waka, e no go better for you!’, and you feel awesome! Except that you can’t do that in a ‘civilised environment’. So you fake a smile, and do your best to keep calm and carry on whilst seething within.

So this note is not about Scarlet, instead this note is more positively about Dentaa,crazy Ghanaian blogger who reminds me to say it like it is. Afterall, irrespective of location or occupation, we are still afterall African to the teeth.

*****************************************************************
Intro: The 14-for-14 challange by Janyl. (Click here to familiarize yourelf with the '14 for 14 challenge'). I recently accepted this challenge to go on a quest searching for brand new blogs...with the bull-headed conviction that all creativty is not lost within the nigeria-blogsphere. And also desperate to prove that, contrary to recently popular opinion, not all of the new blog pages are uninteresting (to put it mildly). This is my sixth post into that journey. 

Friday, May 30, 2014

Falling in love with a blogger - The T.Notes' Blog Sniffer alerts.

#Late night musing alert.

A friend of mine reluctantly joined a religious dating website, and after a few weeks, she concluded that every user in the community was either a freak or a potential psychopath. She asked my opinion, from a blogger's perpective, and i quickly refuted her argument. I cited the numerous highly intelligent and useful contacts i have built up over blogging years, and presented a shiny case for social-media. I agreed that...yes indeed, a dating website is more likely to draw a certain category of colorful characters, so she would be better off switching into a less ambitious community - such as an online interest group or a blogging platform.

I preached about how within such less obtrusive groups, people are more real and less inhibited, so you get a better chance of navigating the inner depths of a person before  taking any step into the grimmy worlds of italian pasta, red wine and first date etiquettes. In other words, sift through the nutballs online to find the soul that appeals to you, before putting on a dinner dress. I told her it really just makes life a little easier, just as long as you're on the right online platform.

In retrospect, i realize i was talking a lot of bull&%$t. Not because i don't believe it is entirely impossible to fall in love with an online acquaintance, but because i briefly forgot the simple morale from the T.V show #CatFish, i.e, the fact everybody online either puts their best foot forward, or worse still, wears an entirely different bodysuit that belongs to someone else.

Take my blogger friend Musco for instance. Now i know personally that Musco is of the same generation as i am, and also as with the most charming Lara...that generation of blearly eyed wanderlusts, who are constantly searching to attain somethig shinier than the existence currently at hand. Given that they both share an uncommon lust for flight terminals, travel air-miles & foreign languages, i have always had a fleeting thought that Musco & Lara would hit it off easily....and what's to say that they didn't? Since the two were easily on my Google+ contacts, let's imagine hypothetically how easy it was to hook up a google hangout and leave the rest to fluid conversation and fate. So who says fairytales do not happen on shared common grounds of blogger templates.

That story might be the only one success story i have recently encountered of love across blinking cursor lines, or it might simply be a concoction of blurred truths and an over-active imagination - in other words, a #catfish, just like my friend concluded about many online interactions. Who's to tell, except either of the two people involved? And what's the point, you might ask? I think the point is how i have lately realized a certain naivety that i have held on to, which links to this challenge  i'd accepted - to go on a quest in search of brand new blogs.

I find that my bleary eyed quest is similar to the strong opinion i'd presented to my friend - to go ahead and fall in love with a blogger. Not out of uninformed naivity, but more sensibly searching to find a new blog that truthfully allows the real person behind the cursor to spill unfiltered into the pages - like an unsolicited random conversation with someone else on the other side of the pond. I'd said to her, go and fall in love, not with just another new ambitious blogger. But instead, the one at the other end of the cursor who is waiting to tell you how annoying his day was, right down to the dirty insignificant details of the chunk of cauliflower wedged in between his teeth, which he noticed only after that crucial office presentation was over. And about his older boss who discretly admitted that she thinks about him more often than is appropriate, and how he wasn't sure if to be flattered, flustered or upset at the potential grounds for sexual harrassment. Who knows where the roads of attraction may lead.

Now if this one kind of person existed for every other blogger with a penchant for emotional connection on a literal level. And if such online platforms were a finely blended playground of cunning linguists and honest merchants, then i wouldn't be struggling to find a good new blog to present as a monthly review. And more importantly, my friend would not have come back to me saying she had a look through my suggested online platforms, and all she found were a dry dribble of gossip pages and meaningless nonsense. Like a tired blogger ranting rubbish about online romance at 1am...

So, is it even possible to fall in love with a blogger then? Who knows, and who cares really. I am afterall properly hitched now, so thank you for not asking me ;)

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Hitched.

.... and so now that I am properly hitched.
Datsall.