Sunday, November 30, 2008

Violence: the withering line between the criminals and victims

It is hard enough for me to come to terms with the reality that a city like Mumbai, can be rocked by petty politics played out by statists who curse and blame non-mumbaikars and want to throw them out. And now given the recent Delhi blasts in prominent markets, the Mumbai blasts......its just pathetic and ghastly to imagine that anything can happen at anytime to anyone.
Northern Nigeria is also seeing communal violence, burnt mosques and churches in the city of Jos over state elections. 300 people have died and over seven thousand have fled their homes out of fear.

Its amazing to see how easily and speedily those angry take to violence. Whether its criminals who want to kill for money or its the angered marginalized victim who wants his voice heard. Everyone is raising their hands with an intention to hurt another human being for some goal of which shockingly there are no civilized ways of achieving!

Where is the rule of law utopia that all of keep chiming about? When will all the killing stop?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Great HOPE Walk 2008

If it werent for these pictures, it would be difficult to believe that a thousand people can walk 10 km for a cause on a major Lagos expressway given the stiff competition for space among the bikes, cars, buses and people ! Since 2000, HOPE World Wide Nigeria has been mobilizing thousands of people in Lagos to walk and create awareness on HIV/AIDS and orphans and vulnerable children. It was quite a thrill, knowing me, I was not sure I could walk even half way, but I managed about 8 km before hopping on to the bus!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Volunteer Meeting at Whispering Palms!

Sweet Memories of Home

It was a surreal feeling--landing at the Delhi airport after eight months--given that this has been the longest I have been away from Delhi! Even though my Nigerian lifestyle was so completely different from my Indian one, it was surprising how I adjusted back into old routines and habits.
It is a fantastic feeling being on vacation at home, I was treated with royalty and my family fulfilled my every wish for food, shopping and fun! My birthday was a special day--I made all wear Nigerian clothes and my sis made us put on birthday caps! Thanks to my boss's mobilisation efforts, I received many many birthday calls from my Nigerian friends. With a singing flower candle on cake and my favourite meal (makki ki roti and saag), I completed my 28 years in style.

After badgering Parth for getting me the perfect birthday gift, I got the latest edition of "We the Living" by Ayn Rand. But what made it perfect were the words, "My dear Mana, I cherish our living, loving and learning together! Happy Birthday, Parth"

I had countless conversations on my Naija experiences, the most common question being, "How are the people?" To those with a eager ear, it was fun sharing my daily routines, my pictures, my funny experiences and of course the "not so nice" stuff as well!!