Does the city of your birth hold any significance for you? You might associate significance to mean your family being in the city of your birth and maybe the saying “home is where the heart is” err but I think that for me it’s more than that.
The city of Ibadan (Ẹ̀bá Ọ̀dàn) just holds an affinity for me that I haven’t quite figured out yet, I need to travel round the world and then come back to revisit this blog and see if any other city would be in my bloodstream or tug at my heartstrings the way Ibadan does.
As a full time resident for about 2decades plus(I’m sure someone is already saying that’s why you have an affinity, 😂 maybe, maybe not) with occasional forays to the big city of Lagos and other south western cities in Nigeria, it is safe to say each time I’m out of the city and I step back, my feet literally itch to drive through the city, visit anywhere, board a taxi and haggle the transportation fare😂. For one who loves the city so much you would think I took my time to dig deep into its history and significant historical places and so I’m about to share it’s history with you and introduce you to my city 🤣 (I’m sorry to disappoint you 😭). Oh well! let me introduce Ibadan to you with the popular poem Ibadan by J. P. Clark
running splash of rust
and gold-flung and scattered
among seven hills like
broken china in the sun
My city-love (for lack of a better word) is a mix of ancient civilization, golden brown rusty roofs, maybe not well structured and modern civilization , with the mix of the old and new as you drive through 😂 but I love to pass through all these seemingly mix-matched pattern my city is famous for. My favorite drive routes would be the “Ojo express way , Ojo down to the Mokola roundabout, University of Ibadan down to the UCH, Mokola down to Ringroad, a drive through Sango down to Eleyele, a drive through Mokola to the Alesinloye market, Iworoad to the Monatan, Iyana church axis, a drive through the Akobo estate to link Monatan, the routes within the University of Ibadan(where I lived for two years) and of course Iworoad down to my parents’ house too” 😂😂.
If you are a resident or one who is familiar with Ibadan, I’m sure this brings back memories. (P.S: I do not drive 🙃 and I haven’t been serious about my driving lessons😉 but I’m blessed to have people who do not mind giving me a ride to places I need to be in my city especially a dear friend who answers when I call and drives me all through my favorite spots☺😊).
Albeit, I also completely love to take taxis, I mean the thrill of getting a spot to sit at the back, with two other strangers and being lucky to get a window seat, meeting with different taxi drivers, with annoying and funny personalities 😂 (those ones from Iworoad to my father’s house are just a sport on their own 🤣) and then haggling the taxi fare, take it a step further jostling and haggling with traders especially in the Dugbe market, (haggling with traders Tolu? Err no I do not have the strength most of the time) but when I occasionally hold these conversations it can either be funny or annoying.
Between me and you, I think it’s the easy going and friendly vibe the city gives, going on without a care in the world and still retaining its intricacies, whilst also going through modern development and not losing its essence, more so the ability not to hold on too tight to the world and it’s temporary glories would be why the city is forever in my blood stream.
For perspectives sake, let’s say I’m writing to share a perspective that maybe just maybe there are places/people/things that you have an unexplainable affinity to, you may do well to explore these people, places, passions or things as the case may be as long as they do not take you off-track or more precisely, off your life’s path.
Here I drop my writer’s pen, from my heart as always
P.S: Viva La Vida