Tuesday, June 12, 2018

There is hope for humanity

Someone shared the story below with me sometime ago.

This happened at the Palms Shopping Mall in Victoria Island Lagos; This is very scary and could happen to any of us. Seems like every nice thing people do for one another can be perverted. This is a new twist to kidnapping from a very smart survivor.

About a week ago, there was a woman standing by the mall entrance passing out flyers to all the women going in. The woman had written the flyer herself to tell about an experience she had, so that she might warn other women. The previous day, this woman had finished shopping, went out to her car and discovered that she had a flat tyre. She got the jack out of the trunk and began to change the flat tyre.

A nice man dressed in a business suit and carrying a briefcase walked up to her and said, “I noticed you’re changing a flat tire. Would you like me to take care of it for you?”

The woman was grateful for his offer and accepted his help. They chatted amiably while the man changed the flat, and then put the flat tire and the jack in the trunk, shut it and dusted his hands off. The woman thanked him profusely, and as she was about to get in her car, the man told her that he left his car around on the other side of the mall, and asked if she would mind giving him a lift to his car.

She was a little surprised and she asked him why his car was on other side. He explained that he had seen an old friend in the mall that he hadn’t seen for some time and they had a bite to eat, visited for a while, and he got turned around in the mall and left through the wrong exit, and now he was running late. The woman hated to tell him “no” because he had just rescued her from having to change her flat tire all by herself, but she felt uneasy. (Trust that gut feeling!) Then she remembered seeing the man put his briefcase in her trunk before shutting it and before he asked her for a ride to his car.

She told him that she’d be happy to drive him around to his car, but she just remembered one last thing she needed to buy.

Smart woman!! She said she would only be a few minutes; he could sit down in her car and wait for her; she would be as quick as she could be. She hurried into the mall, and told a security guard! What had happened, the guard came out to her car with her, but the man had left. They opened the trunk, took out his locked briefcase and took it down to the police station. The police opened it (ostensibly to look for ID so they could return it to the man). What they found was rope, duct tape, and knives.

When the police checked her “flat” tire, there was nothing wrong with it; the air had simply been let out. It was obvious what the man’s intention was, and obvious that he had carefully thought it out in advance.

The woman was blessed to have escaped harm. (Amen thank you, God!) How much worse it would have been if she had children with her and had them wait in the car while the man fixed the tire, or if she had a baby strapped into a car seat or if she’d gone against her judgment and given him a lift?

I’d like you to forward this to all those you know that may need to be reminded that the world we live in has a lot of deviants in it. It may save a life. Better to be safe than sorry.

A candle is not dimmed by lighting another candle. I was going to send this to the ladies only; but men, if you love your mothers, wives, sisters, daughters and indeed everyone, you may want to pass it on to them, as well.

However, I think there is still hope for humanity. We should not lose faith in humanity.
The story above brought an incident that happened to me and my husband yo mind.
Let me share...
On 31st December, 2015, when we were in Nigeria. We were on our way back to Apata from Akobo area, in Ibadan,  around 6:30p.m. We took the highway and the traffic became very bad.
We were going to be stuck, we needed to go get ready for watch night service in church.
 Cars were turning back...It was a mess. We were able turning back to go take Iwo road, but the traffic was beginning to build up as well. That's how this guy who was hawking soap, I think, came to our car asked us where we were headed and was giving us directions to take academy area etc, but of course, we were obviously clueless. He offered to take us to the nearest junction.
We had just a few seconds to respond because there were 2 big trailers heading our way and would block the only exit we had.
 Anyway, he got into the backseat, and gave us directions. All the while, I was praying and asking him questions just to keep him talking and at the same time accessing him. At a point, he had to comment in yoruba " Aunty yi, e ma beru, e n'igbagbo ninu Olorun" meaning "Don't be afraid. Have faith in God, you this aunty" . My anxiety and fear were that obvious.
He led through the detour (proper interior Ibadan). It had gotten dark by then. He thought we were from Lagos. The only thing he wanted was transport fare back to where we picked him from.
...There are still good people out there...

Road Trip Chronicles III (Southwest)

Hello y'all.
Hope you are well.
These are some photos from my family road trip to the Southwestern part of the United State. We drove from Kansas city through Oklahoma city. We visited with some friends and stopped by the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum.(The photos I took at the museum were not so great).
Then we drove to Albuquerque,NM, where we enjoyed the desert scenery and the Sandia Tramway. On our way to Arizona, we stopped at Acoma Pueblo sky city - One of the Native American tribes in New mexico and the Meteor crater. In Arizona we hung out with friends in Phoenix.
Southwestern part of the US is uniquely beautiful like the other parts of the U.S. While driving through the plains and desert, one could almost forget being in the U.S because of the style of architecture,weather, local stores, topography and landscape.
I think you should visit some time.

The ancient Zia sun symbol represents the unique character of New Mexico. . 

The Sandia Tramway, Albuquerque, NM. It is the longest aerial tram in the United States. 

The Arches National Park in Moab, Utah.

One of the many geological formations at the Arches National Park.

The Meteor/Barriger crater, Arizona. 

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

New-Year Prayer.

Happy New-Year!
I am here to let you know that you have a role to play in God's big picture for humanity, with your flaws and all.
You don't have to hold a political office or minister from a pulpit/podium, wherever you are, whatever your background, just show a little kindness everyday.

I will leave you with this prayer I copied from a devotional:

My prayer for you is that you would look around you with fresh eyes and an open heart and really see people.
I pray that you would see them not as threats or problems or inconveniences but as children of God/God's creation to seerve.
I pray you see people and before even wondering what they could do for you, that you find yourself dreaming up ways to bless them.
I pray you day to do what it takes to help those around you.


Friday, December 22, 2017

Road Trip Chronicles II (Banff National Park)

This post is a continuation of a previous post . I am gradually putting together photos from road trips I made with my family . 
So,On the 3rd day of our trip, we left our friends in Regina, Saskatchewan , and drove  westward to Calgary, Alberta, to visit another friend. 
After 2 days in Calgary, we visited Banff National park.
Banff National park is about 2 hours drive west from Calgary. It is in the Rocky mountains, very picturesque all year round. The park was established in 1885.
It is a beautiful park, with mountainous terrain and glaciers. We hope to visit next time and spend at least 2 nights in Banff,  because there is no way one can explore the 6,641 square kilometers the park encompasses in one day.☺

It was a surprise to see wildlife(Elk, Bison) roaming free at the park. We were told we  might run into Grizzly bears, Cougars, Lynx, further up in the mountains.

One of the entrances leading to the park.

One of the Rocky Mountains peaks.

Mountain view from the Sally Borden Fitness center located at the Banff Center.

The Banff National museum is full of Canadian history like the Royal visit to Banff in the early 1900s.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Road-trip Chronicles I (Mount Rushmore)

Hey people, hope you are all well.
The holiday season is upon us, and the year is running (literally) to an end.
So, as part of reflecting and taking into stock the past year(s) and events, I have decided to share photos of some my family's road trips.
Road trips have somewhat become my family's annual tradition . We travel by road to different places in the United States either for a family event or to just sight-see and visit friends.

The trip to Mount Rushmore National Memorial, in Keystone SD, was part of our road trip during Spring-break 2016.
We drove up from Missouri to Minnesota, spent the night at a friend's place, then drove into Canada through North Dakota, stopped briefly in Fargo to sight-see, then drove to Regina, a city in Saskatchewan, Canada, to see some friends. In case you are wondering, the drive took more than 15 hours from MN to Regina.☺
Our stop at the Mount Rushmore National Memorial, was on our way back home. It was a rather short visit because of the inclement weather the day we arrived there (last week of March), so we did not get to explore as much as we wanted.
Anyway, here are some photos from the visit:

A  wall with the names of individuals and organizations that contributed towards Mount Rushmore Memorial National Park project.

The sculptor who designed and created the sculptures of the heads of 4 US presidents. Gutzon Borglum oversaw the project's execution from 1927 to 1941, with the help of his son, Lincoln Borglum.

A wall listing the names of the workers that built the Mount Rushmore National Park.

Some items associated with the area and people (Lakota people)  the Mount Rushmore Memorial park is located.
George Washington, Thomas Jefferson,  Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln's heads carved into the granite face of Mount Rushmore. The sculpture is about 60-foot tall.

A  line-up of flags representing the 50 states of the United States.

Pottery by the people of Lakota.

A view of the sculptures from the road leading to the National park.

Thanks for viewing!😘

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

For Your Present and Future Reference.

Wow, It's fall already! 
It is my best time of the year, the weather is just perfect- not too hot, not too cold. 
For me, fall is the time for reflection about the year that is about to end and the new year that is just weeks away.
That is why I am sharing these nuggets with you now. They might seem to be for parents only, because of the few references to children, however, I think they are applicable and beneficial to all and sundry. Enjoy!

  • Spend the money that should be spent, enjoy what should be enjoyed, donate what you are able to donate, but don't leave all of your hard earned wealth to your children or grandchildren, for you don't want them to become parasites who are waiting for the day you will die.
  • DON'T WORRY about what will happen after you are gone, because when you return to dust, you will feel nothing about, social praises, acceptances  or criticisms. The time to enjoy the worldly life and your hard earned wealth will be over and soon like all other famous and non-famous beings, NOBODY will be bothered about you!
  • DON'T WORRY too much about your children, for children will have their own destiny and should find their own way. Don't be your children's slave. Care for them, love them, give them gifts but also enjoy your money while you can. Life should have more to it than working from the cradle to the grave!!
  • DON'T EXPECT too much from your children. Ask yourself how much you care about your own parents... Caring children, though caring, would be busy with their jobs and commitments to render only * additional* help.
  • Uncaring children may fight over your assets even when you are still alive, and wish for your early demise so they can inherit your properties and wealth.
  • Your children take for granted that they are rightful heirs to your wealth; but that you have ABSOLUTELY NO claims to their money.
  • When to stop making money, and how much MONEY IS enough?...A hundred,  thousand, One million, ten million, one billion... ? Out  of thousands of hectares of good farm land, you can consume only 1/4 kg of rice daily; Out of 10  mansions, you only need 8 square meters of  space to rest at night. 
  • So, as long as you have enough food and enough money to spend, that is good enough. You should live happily. Every family has its own problems.-don't trade in - your health for wealth, by working yourself to an early grave anymore. Because your money may not be able to buy your health. 
  • Just DO NOT COMPETE with others for fame and social status and see whose children are doing better etc., but challenge others for happiness, health, enjoyment, quality of  life and longevity. 
  • You have to create your own well-being and find your own place of happiness.As long  as you are in good mood and good health, think about happy things, do happy things daily and have fun in doing these things...  then you will pass your time happily every day.
  • IF One day passes WITHOUT happiness, you will lose one day.IF One day passes WITH happiness, then you WILL gain an additional day. DON'T WORRY about things that you can't change... age, height, weight, color.....  because it doesn't help and it will additional  spoil your health to an early GRAVE. 
  • In good spirit, sickness will be cured;In a happy spirit, sickness will be cured faster; in high and happy spirits, sickness will never come to you
  • With good mood and  suitable amount of exercise, always out in the sun, eating a variety of foods, reasonable amounts of vitamins and minerals intake, hopefully you will live another additional 20 to 30 years of a  healthy life of fun and pleasure.
             *Author Unknown*


Learn to cherish the goodness around you.. and  the good FRIENDS you have...... They all make you feel young and "wanted"... without them you will surely feel lost!

Wishing you all the best for the years to come.


Friday, May 12, 2017

When God Met Eve.

Have you ever wondered the conversation God had with Eve in the garden of Eden soon after she was created?
There must have been a conversation from when she drew her first breath to when she was presented to Adam,before Adam named her Eve ..Then The Lord God made the woman from the rib of Adam, and brought her to Adam (Genesis 2:22).

Now let us imagine what happened in the Garden of Eden Circa 2000 BC.

Eve, just freshly made, opens her eyes, draws her first breath, looks at her body and then looks at  her immediate surroundings. It was dawn, the sun was just coming out and the first person she sees is God...wow!
God had been watching her,  appreciating His wonderful creation.

The conversation that ensued between God and Eve might be something like this:

Eve: Hello * looking surprised and in awe*
God:  Good morning. My name is God.
          I will take you to meet Adam, if you don't mind.
Eve: Who is Adam, sir?
God: Adam is my creation made out of the dust of the earth.
          I put him in charge of my other creations.
          I did not cause rain to fall on earth until Adam was created.
Eve: Wow! Adam must be very important to you.
God: Yes, he is and so are you, Eve.
         You are going help Adam with his assignment.
         However, I have given you the ability to think and
         make decisions for yourself like Adam.
         You have the power to influence Adam's choices,
          But, chose to use this power wisely.
         I want you to know that you are beautiful. 
         I have endowed you with grace and poise.

If you are reading this article, those words in italics are for you. This is to celebrate our mothers, sisters, wives, friends and all womanhood.
Keep smiling, Keep shining, ladies.


Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Add These To Your Resume...Thank Me Later!

My first exposure to the work environment in the US as a newly arrived immigrant was in 2006. I volunteered my internship hours for 6 months at a small hospital in New Jersey. After that, I have had the opportunity to work full time and part-time in a variety of states, roles and settings for the past 10 years.

My family and I recently relocated (again!) and I began working in yet another role-This time, in an area of my discipline (pharmacy) that I have never worked before.
New job, new setting, new colleagues....It feels like "deja vu" all over again, even though it is a little different from what I have been doing for the past 10 years.This time I intend to apply some of the lessons that I have learned from experience, discoveries and mistakes of the past.
Here are a few that I want to share with you: 
  • The work place is a learning environment :

As a new employee, you are expected to have to demonstrate most of (not all) the skills you claim on your resume. 
However, every new role offers the opportunity to learn new skills or to learn new ways of doing what one is already trained to do.

Every little thing such as learning to use a new software program, or a new work-flow process or working with a new colleague , offer opportunities to learn. In the past, I made the mistake of "playing it safe" by sticking to what I was familiar with- I shied away from getting involved in new unfamiliar projects because I did not want to make any mistakes and look bad. 

But now, I have learned to have an open mind to develop new skills by taking advantage of these opportunities, while working. Being pro-active and be willing to take on new responsibilities that are not within " your comfort zone" offers the best opportunities to learn.

  • Strive to be respected and not be liked 

When you resume a new position, first of all,
 establish the impression that you know what you are doing, 
your know your worth and have good work ethics. 
For instance, avoid coming to work late 
or on your personal cellphone all the time.

Admiration and being liked by supervisors/ colleagues 
will come after and not the other way around. 
After all, first impression, they say, lasts for ever.

  • Let your voice be heard :

Of course this is not about becoming obnoxious and annoying by being in everybody's face all the time. 

This is about selectively and strategically sharing useful information. 

Respectfully offering a different view or suggestions about alternative ways to perform a task or work-flow based on experience could be beneficial to your organization.
This is one of the best ways to demonstrate buy-in (commitment) and team spirit. It is also a great way to earn the respect of your new colleagues.

 I grew up in a conservative environment where speaking to your superiors when not spoken to was not encouraged. However, the work place is evolving and employers are looking for feedback from their employers and clients. 
I read an article about the Cheesecake Factory and how they encourage their front-line staff to offer suggestions about recipes and how this practice as improved their services. 
So giving detailed feedback either verbally or in writing is actually viewed positively, as long as it is done right.

  • Ask and Don't Assume :

If you want something or need clarification about something- ASK. The worst that could happen is get a "no" as an answer, and that is not the end of the world, my dear. 

Do not assume that your colleagues and supervisors know what you need to make your work more effective. If you are struggling with a project ASK for help. If your job description is seemly different from what you have been employed for, ASK for clarification, don't assume. 

  • Be part of the team : 

We are going to find ourselves in work environments with people with different work experience, religious backgrounds, ethnicity and even life experiences. 

You and your co-workers will not always agree but there will always be the common goal of achieving a positive outcome and productivity
With that in mind, avoid alienating yourself from co-workers based on real or perceived differences.
In a progressive work environment , being engaging is considered to be as crucial as getting the work done. 

During my internship, I made the mistake not getting involved in non-work related conversations or some meetings that I thought were not necessarily part of my training.
As a result, I missed out in some vital information and on opportunities to network. One of the feedback I got from my supervisor, when I completed my internship hours, was the " I was not engaging enough with the staff members" .
 That was a lesson learned.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

You Just Gotta Be, Hon!....

This is one my favorite '90s songs.The lyrics still have true and deep meaning, especially the chorus:
" You gotta be hard"- Be hard on yourself. In essence, stop giving yourself excuses.
" You gotta be tough"- Don't compromises on your core values, even in the face of struggles.
" You gotta be stronger"- Set goals and strive to achieve them.
We started a new year almost four weeks ago, the days and weeks are running by again. They seem to move faster as the years go by, or is it just me?
Honey, channel your energy into the needful, into the what makes you grow. Stay focused on your goals, you might not meet all of them, but put in your best and leave the rest to God. Whatever you have been putting off or postponing, try and get it done now, as the saying goes "time waits for no one".

I know you have it in you to succeed.
Let's claim all the blessings God has promised us in 2017.

Keep Shinning, Keep smiling ....xoxox

Thursday, November 10, 2016

After 9/11.


   The US elections have finally come and gone.The world watched America decide amongst on overwhelming "oohs and "ahhs". I found this particular round of elections very disturbing from the beginning. The prospective candidates were either "not qualified" or "overly qualified". Hillary and Donald were not the perfect fit either. There were too many politically incorrectness.

  The outcome of the elections have reinforced my perspectives on some things, for instance:

  1. Hard work and popularity do not get you what  you want:Hillary Clinton, who I rooted for, has been in the corridors of power since the '90s. She has worked hard to be where  she is now politically, but that did not get her what she wanted. Her gender did not even support her, even though she promised to advocate for women and their rights in the workplace.
  2. People will do what they want to do: Regardless of what you say or what the obvious outcome is , people will do what they think would work for them. People will be people regardless of their their educational or religious background. There were many allegations aired and made public against Donald that were enough to jeopardize his political ambition. Allegations that would make anyone blush, allegations that would tarnish anyone's image. But guess what, America still voted for him. I guess we will find out if the majority is right.
  3. Right and wrong does not matter anymore(This is like a continuation of #2):  There have been arguments about whether good moral character is one of the requirements to get into office- Well, I think, it is important for a public figure to be some sort of positive role model. 
  4. Don't believe everything in the media, because the media can be bought: There are a lot of stuff going on behind the scenes that the media will never reveal. There are so many half truths and mind games in the media, especially in politics.
  5. Even if you don't qualify for the job, go ahead and apply : Donald Trump was the least qualified for the POTUS position , from the stand point of political experience and diplomatic skills, but he got the job.....Now, would he perform at the job? That's another question all together.
  6. There is no 'refuge' anywhere: Like most of us immigrants, refuge is sought in your host countries because you believe the "grass is greener" there , you believe you are safer and have more opportunities. However, the truth is, all the countries immigrants usually look up to- USA, Canada, UK, France, etc- for refuge are realizing that these countries are not as perfect as they thought.  This year alone we have seen the effects of Brexit and the fall in the price of crude oil. Countries are shutting their doors on refugees and immigrants because of limited resources.
 People, please make the best of wherever you are, improve yourself and your community. Make God your refuge and sanctuary.