Happy Birthday, Nigeria!


Today is the 48th anniversary of Nigeria’s independence. Yes, I get to celebrate two independence days every year. Nigeria is my country by birth and the U.S. is my country by choice. I love both my countries! Born and raised in Lagos, I lived there until I was 21 when, barely had the words “I do” left my mouth, my husband whisked me off to a land far, far, away. OK, so England was only a 6-hour plane flight from Lagos. After a three-year sojourn in the UK, we came to the U.S. The rest, as they say, is history.

Last week, I volunteered at my daughter’s school and met a lady (100% caucasian) with a Nigerian middle name. She had been born in Lagos the year of Nigeria’s independence, to expatriate parents who lived there for 4 years. As we sat and talked about Nigeria, I took a trip down memory lane with a perfect stranger. By the time we returned to the present time, we were buddies.

With all of my family still there, Nigeria will always be home to me. Yet, when I’m there and ready to return to the U.S., I look forward to going back “home.” I am truly blessed to have two homes. My values, my heritage, my culture, my nose and my cheekbones originate from the southwestern shores of the “Lion of Africa.” So does my spunk (yes, I’ll admit I’ve got a smidgen of that too!).

So today, with a little more nostalgia than usual, I’ve got Nigeria on my mind. God bless you, Lion of Africa!


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. ash
    Oct 02, 2008 @ 01:35:00

    mmm, that is so cool, sola.

    as for africa overall- i love hearing you talk about it- your fondness for it. i love hearing my friend isha talk about sierra leon–both are places i hope to see one day soon for myself.

    and it’s weird, i’m a home grown american…but i am so enthralled by my irish/german heritage- my grandparents (and beyond) and history as to how the people are characterized and even sterotyped.

    i have such a great love for culture in general. so cool. god bless nigeria


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