What I Miss Most About the UK

Well, I have become indifferent to the traffic, having to sleep through the heat and sweat of a power cut and waking up to have a shower to find that the taps are producing no water. I no longer think back to London when these things happen. They are now trivial issues to me – a sign that I am getting used to Nigeria. But what I miss the most about the UK is conversation. This is the one thing that’s holding me back from loving this return to my country.

I miss my geeky friends. I miss talking about David Attenborough’s latest documentary. I miss analysing evolution and intelligent design. I miss speculating whether or not the Large Hadron Collider would find anything remarkable (well, it has but you get the drift). I miss listening intently to my apologetics course mates’ debates.  I miss comparing West African and South American cultures with my Brazilian and Colombian friends.  I miss talking about British Imperialism and how the artefacts in the Things-Stolen-From-Other-People Museum (a.k.a British Museum) need to be returned. I miss talking about that new Singaporean restaurant on Warren Street and debating which is better: Ippudo or Kanada-Ya. I miss deliberating the difference between ramen and pho.

David Bowie died and no one here knew who he was. The Lumineers released their second album after a long wait and I had to keep it to myself.  A new fossil of a marine reptile was discovered and not one person cares. Banksy has just drawn something and I can talk to no one about it.

I find myself limited in conversation. I can’t talk about the things I am interested in, and when I do try, I get blank stares. The things that interest Nigerians in conversation – the government, football and fashion – are yet to strike a chord with me.  Even on this blog, I find myself holding back so I don’t completely alienate people. And I want to talk so much!

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18 Comments

  1. Hmmmm..stay strong my sister, the force is strong with you. I think you need to invest more time in getting the right circle of people, even in Nigeria, who share the flair for intellectual discussions. You tend to find that mostly with the expats….healthy conversations, book clubs, wine tasting n experimenting on how to make raviolli with ugwu leaf.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! Yeah a friend has been begging to introduce me to his expat friends but I find the whole concept of ‘hunting’ for good conversation weird and I’m afraid of seeming like those ‘white men chasers’. Why is it so hard to find thinking Nigerians? Even among educated circles, the talk seems so empty…or am I just being a snob?
      And raviolli with ugwu – do tell:)

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      1. Lol… I’m quite certain that there r thinking nigerians. I think u need a tad of scenery change, within d same nigeria. Apart from d expats, I can easily tell that in the corporate world or any industry , the higher in d hierachy the people u engage, the more intellectual savy ul find them. For banks, start with General Managers. Below that, there are occassional sparks, but most of the rest r just good at delivering results.
        A while ago I noticed that most people ( in nig, england and on Mars) tend to not think, but rather ‘remember and compare’ by default. Ask a guy for his favorite drink , and by default he tries to remember what he drank d last 10 time he had a good evening….not exactly y d drink was good enuf to be his favorite.

        Anyway, ul be surprised the size of things u never knew shit about when u discuss with people from diverse circles…. Try entering a sports betting 9ja Bet store around u and ul be surprised on the drunk guy’s grasp of statistics, algebra and probabilities..lol

        If u promise to pay me and pay for the lunch and pay for my uber, I can let u buy me lunch and host u to an intellectually discussion over d best steak in lagos. What say u?

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        1. Oh..and yes u can av a payment plan for the bills I proposed.

          And the raviolli with ugwu, we agreed, will be a delight, if we can find anyone to sacrifice her kitchen…lol

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        2. lol I think I’m actually going to take you advice and spend some time at 9ja bet.
          And as for your conversation offer, you know with the dollar rate and everything….. 😛

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  2. I totally understand. I’d just say don’t restrict yourself. I love reading your blog because of how similar the thoughts are to mine. I’m mixed( Nigerian and ukrainian living in Ukraine) and most of my intellectual friends( ha! Am i bragging) are online. I guess we find ourselves online, all of us people dying for great conversations

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    1. Yes, I’ve certainly learned to really appreciate the internet over the last couple of months. Thank you so much for reading my blog! I’m glad you enjoy it! Plus it’s great to know that my thoughts make sense to someone 😀

      P.S: If you ever want to be a guest blogger let me know. I have a German/Nigerian friend (she doesn’t like to be called mixed) writing something on race soon. I dont know if that would tickle your fancy….[Plus you may like to check this out themark8christian.com]

      Liked by 1 person

      1. 🙂 you’re welcome. Checked the blog. It looks good, thanks for sharing and I’ll be waiting to read your friend’s upcoming blog post. Let’s see, will let you know anytime I’ve got stories to share

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  3. LOL There are 1001 people you can have the intellectual convo with. After all we are kinda having one right now. You just have to be open minded about finding the right circle of people.

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  4. Oh this. When you dare go too deep you get that “na only you go school” look. Or they flash the “oyibo, nah you first go abroad,” smile.

    I can feel your pain, the starvation is intense. Settle with watching others discuss, it’s often more enthralling, it’s what I do. Or when the need gets too strong to bear, grab something and write for an audience of one (yourself).

    Ps: BTW, NEPA, Fuel and other Nigerian wahala will not even let our people think intellectually. How can you talk about awesome stuff in the heat you described above? That’s just a plan to fry your brain.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Hmm can you imagine coming back to Nigeria and finding yourself in the Nigerian Civil Service…There is nothing more horrendous I can tell you. It felt like my brain literally froze! The level of ignorance 100%, intelligence 5% and don’t even get me started on the retarded way of thinking where it is absolutely OK for you to be brain dead as long as you hang in there and grow to become a director or if you are lucky a permanent Secretary. I work in the IT department in one of the Ministries and my Head of ICT is so unbelievably clueless and attributes every silly act of ignorance to “how they do things in the civil service”. The younger staffs are not any better and I’ve given up trying to even have conversations with them…it’s of no use, so when I’m at work, I am online and my ears are plugged, I’d rather not hear that short sighted argument they are having next door thank you! Well my luck changed when they brought a new director who has spent a long time working in the US…finally someone that has a functioning brain and knows what’s acceptable!

    When I get back from my brain numbing work, I Quilt the way I keep my brain challenged and creative, guess what…most people don’t even know what a Quilt is! Most of my friends here work in banks and trust me they are too stressed to have any decent conversation and like you said government or Fashion is the topic of choice. I think I have become a recluse of sorts and spend my time communicating with my friends outside Nigeria, blogging or making new friends with similar interest online of course 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 😀 Trust me, you cant be more of a recluse than I am. Outside the family I live with, I dont have face to face convos with anyone. Blogs have been my saving grace since I returned and the funny thing is I never really liked blogs before now.

      And take heart. I seriously do not envy you in that gov. office. Sorry but once I read your comment, I felt so much better about my life.

      Like

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