This is the third part of what I like to call—lockdown chronicles. This pandemic/lockdown has taught a lot of us (if not everyone) about a lot of different things. For me, the third thing it has revealed to me is my detest for Lagos traffic. I’ve been a nervous wreck since I heard that the Government might lift the lockdown because I don’t want to get back to my eight-hour a day commute (yes you saw that right). Lagos and Google map misdirection has scarred me mehn, and I don’t think I am going to relive the trauma.
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I remember one day when I found myself in unthinkable traffic; a bus hit me on the passenger side of my car, as if that wasn’t enough, a young boy hawking groundnut began to pleasure himself, once he caught a glimpse of my thighs (I wore a dress that was a little above my knee) I tried to get rid of him, but couldn’t. I did not want to raise an alarm as I was scared of a possible attack.
Another day I found myself in one that just wouldn’t move and I broke down crying saying—God for how long am I going to continue like this? I was excited when I was closing in on my two-week vacation because it was a much needed time off, but God knew that I would need some more time. It has been six weeks for me being at home, and I am not mad at it, at all.
Since this lockdown began, one thing I have enjoyed the most is movie nights (every night) with my cousin who is hunkering down with me. We spend our days working from home, and about 4-5 pm, we round up whatever we are doing, prepare our favorite meal or snacks, depending on what recipe we find, then relax in front of the TV, watching old classics or new movies (even if I end up dosing off half the time). This is something living in Lagos has taken away from me, I can only wonder the number of families who don’t even have the luxury of sharing a meal every night, let alone watching a movie (if it’s not the weekend), and to me, that is sad.
Have we gotten so used to the hustle and bustle, that we don’t make time for what matters? Should building a career or business, trump building family traditions around the dinner table? I don’t know, I don’t have all the answers. I was so privileged to grow up in a home, where my father worked offshore and my mom worked a 9-3 job (on some days of the week), while simultaneously running her small businesses which happened to be close to our home.
So my dad was away for two weeks to a month at a stretch and came home for the same amount of time, after each round, while my mom was always available. Luckily we lived in Port-Harcourt, which is a small city and we barely had issues with traffic. We were often home within an hour or less after we left school and my mom her workplace, which gave us ample time to spend together.
Once we were done cooking our meals for the evening, we gathered to watch our favorite soap operas like Super Story, or movies. We gathered around the living room, without a care in the world. I sincerely miss those days; those were simpler times. I did not have to worry about leaving work at 4 pm, only to get home by 9 pm (on a decent day that is). I did not have to worry about my feet swelling each day due to the stress from driving, I did not have to worry about getting to work late because my usual route was jam-packed with traffic, with no way out, I did not have to worry about a darn thing!
Why don’t you move? People have asked me countless times. Some have said I should relocate to Abuja because it is less stressful, and I don’t like stress. I wish I could just pack up and leave, but I also have the luxury of living 15 minutes within my family members, and quite frankly, I don’t want to stay away from them, at least until I get married. I cherish the times I get to spend with them every weekend (that is before the lockdown), and I am not ready for that to change. I don’t know how the Lagos situation is going to be rectified, as it pertains to traffic, bad roads, and people commuting for ridiculous hours, quite frankly I don’t think it’s healthy.
It had to take me one year and an imposed lockdown to finally listen to those who have been concerned about my well-being; now I know what I really want. Making time for what matters like building relationships with friends and family; bombarding them with face time calls just to see how they are doing. Making time to do the things together that we enjoy; sharing encouragements, recipes, and movie suggestions. Having more time to work on my blog, and spending time with the Father; all of these, I prioritize at the moment. One thing I know for sure is that I am not going back to the craziness. This young lady has been scarred, and it is going to take a while for me to feel comfortable to step out again. Maybe this is the new normal I have been praying for.
What do you guys think? How has this lockdown/pandemic shifted your mindset? Leave your comments below or share your thoughts with me by emailing us on email@example.com. Also remember to like, share, and subscribe never to miss an update.
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About The Author: Evi Idoghor is a Christian, writer, and content creator on Letstalknationblog.com. She is a chemical engineering graduate from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Consumed by her love for writing and desire to effect change, she launched her online platform––Let’s Talk Nation––to tap into her creativity and start meaningful conversations that would make a difference around the world.
Most of her writing has been influenced by her time spent in America, where she lived for about 11 years. Also, she lived in Nigeria and South Korea and currently loves traveling the world while learning about other fascinating cultures. You can find her on all social media platforms with @eviidoghor.