WITH LOVE FROM OGUN STATE May 29, 2017 – Posted in: Everyday Living

“My mission in life is not merely to survive but to thrive, and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor and some style”  – Maya Angelou

I have learnt that it’s so easy to stay in one’s comfort zone and have no idea what is happening next door, to live such a one-visioned life and to mistake that with the reality of others. Due to this, i’ve made it my mission to travel more, explore, integrate, understand and see/experience life through the eyes of others in the hope to be learn, be enlightened and to gain knowledge. My first trip was a state in the south-western part of Nigeria. I spent the last 3 days in colourful Ogun state integrating with the locals and exploring the local communities. I went as part of a group with talented documentary photographers to get know and  understand the essence and the culture of the people; i must say it was a very enlightening trip for me from the beginning to the end. To be honest, when the communities we were to visit were selected, i was a bit skeptical as they’re notorious for voodoo but my curiosity got the best of me.

The first thing that stood out to me is the deep respect for authority, because we were a group of 7 visiting communities, we obviously stood out. We were quickly told by the locals that the custom in the land was to go and let your presence known to the Oba (community ruler) and then get permission to speak to the locals and take photos which we did.

I got to meet and chat with a few locals and my opinion they are an industrious bunch. The youth spent their mornings farming and harvesting proceeds for sale, their hot afternoons in the akodu stream swimming and their evenings playing football in the community center.

The mothers spent the days farming and selling the proceeds from the farm at the community market and they spent the evenings processing cassava into ijebu garri or fufu with the help of the little ones. They survive off the work of their own hands and they feed from their farms

(Cocoyam being prepared to make ijebu garri)

The father’s spent the days riding commercial motorcyles or buses and usually came home for lunch to meet the wives and the infants to lunch as a family unit

It was fascinating to listen to the folklore and to learn first-hand of experiences from elders and families that had lived the for centuries and never left the community. The community had a lot of soul and color, it was hard not to feel it. Homes that had stood the test of centuries, felt lovers squabbles and heard endless tales.

I also loved the practise of ancient tradition like cooking with firewood and family sized pots. It took me back to a time I had experienced in my childhood. It literally was ancient and modern

Isosa community living is a simple one. The people are very friendly and welcoming, they are trained from a very early age to be industrious in order to provide for self and family and they have a very strong family value system built on respect.

(With the locals at Akoka stream in Ososa)

In all it’s simplicity, i met dreamers that spent time imagining visiting cities far and wide they had heard of and this reminded me that no matter what part of the universe you stumble upon, you will always find dreamers so keep on dreaming and keep on believing in the possibility of your dreams becoming a reality.

Love x Light,

N.