I’m sensing a trend.. Another Cup O’ Joe- Amsterdam


It’s apparent I love coffee.  I love it here, I love it there, I love it pretty much every where.  So imagine my absolute surprise when I heard that there was going to be a coffee festival in AMSTERDAM!!!!

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Oh yeah.. and there was also some tea there!

“Do Lipton employees take coffee breaks?” —Steven Wright

“We want to do a lot of stuff; we’re not in great shape. We didn’t get a good night’s sleep. We’re a little depressed. Coffee solves all these problems in one delightful little cup.” —Jerry Seinfeld

 

A Simple Cup o’ Joe – Venezuela; A Simple Cup o’ Joe – Nigeria  I have a confession to make – Venezuela; Morning Reflections – Everywhere ; Definitely a first world problem – Costa Rica; Costa Rica – Land of... – Costa Rica; Fantastic Kids – Nepal:  Coffee Break – Turkey

I even have a favorite coffee compilation:  40Songswithcoffee

Bikes and Birds in Amsterdam


You can’t show more balance than a bike or a bird.  Unless you are looking at 2 drunk men on top of a building.  Oh Amsterdam.

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So yeah, I mean, I guess you could, but for this trip, it was a perfect theme to end the month.  Work life and travel balance.  But back to birds and bikes.

 

I hope you enjoyed.

Other balanced posts.

  1. Naomi
  2. Travel with Intent
  3. Dancing Palm Trees
  4. Wind against current
  5. TVOR
  6. Lady
  7. Another day
  8. Travel Rat

 

A Tree at Sunset


Thanks Sally for the great inspiration. Just a tree.. or several…

Springtime in Amsterdam.  New life sprouting and so organized in lines.  It was a very unique photo of a random group of trees.

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And now it feels like the mid of winter..

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A little overexposed..just as I felt coming from Nigeria with a 40 degree difference in temperature.

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And sort of just spooky!

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I hope you enjoyed.

Other posts I enjoyed

  1. Pieces of starlight
  2. Sally Ds
  3. Deco crafts
  4. Zimmerbitch
  5. OHMsweetOHM

Another Cup O’ Joe- Nigeria


I have measured out my life with coffee spoons. T. S. Eliot

Coffee does indeed seem to be an obsession of mine.  Past coffee posts for which I sipped coffee while writing:

A Simple Cup o’ Joe – Venezuela; I have a confession to make – Venezuela; Morning Reflections – Everywhere ; Definitely a first world problemCosta Rica; Costa Rica – Land of... – Costa Rica; Fantastic Kids – Nepal:  Coffee Break – Turkey

I even have a favorite coffee compilation:  40Songswithcoffee

So here I go again down that road…

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So a coffee tour in Nigeria.  It was pouring down rain right before we left so I dressed accordingly.  I assumed it would be like my past coffee tours and I would be stomping through a coffee farm in the pouring rain.  I was rather looking forward to it.  Well, not so much.  It was a very civilized tour of a roasting facility.  We were able to look at some great photos, machines, hear about the history of how coffee was discovered, how it arrived in Nigeria and how it arrives today.

We were also shown how to grind, roast, taste and rate a variety of coffee bean varieties.  We sampled coffee from Kenya, Ethiopia, Nigeria, and a couple of other African countries.  It was delicious and informative.  I was very impressed with the baristas‘ knowledge about all aspects of coffee. It was also super impressive to see the many different ways you can roast and prepare coffee.  There were even folks who didn’t drink coffee on the tour.

I hope you enjoyed the tour and thanks for stopping by.

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“What do you want?”
“Just coffee. Black – like my soul.”
― Cassandra Clare, City of Bones

Other posts I enjoyed

Afrika; Lena; Ouch; Ohm; Lens; Solitary; Wooly; Pimp; LeDrake; Minimalist

Now in Nigeria-make your own hype


I think it’s very easy to get caught up in all the hype.  The hype about people, places and things.  As I headed to Nigeria, let me tell ya, there was a lot of hype.  A lot of negative hype.  Most definitely, a lot of the hype was true.  I’m not going to get into what the hype was, you can google it and make your own decisions about Nigeria.

It’s also easy to get caught up in the now.  The now about people, places and things.  Sometimes the now turns into a rut and it’s difficult to get rid of the impression of the now when you don’t even attempt to discover what is the real of where you are.

Thankfully, I have almost always been able to move myself and remove myself from the nows and the hypes of where I am.  Sometimes it takes hours and sometimes it takes months.  I have now been in Nigeria for about five months and both the hype and the now have been very slowly mutating into an interesting and wonderful experience.  Sure, there is still the truth of the hype, and some of the nows will probably never change, but the reality of many of the nows are truly changing my mind and my impression of what the rest of my time in Nigeria will be like.  I have a very good feeling about what is to come.

I have started getting out  a little more and recently attended a showing of a documentary about a group of Yoruba master musicians from Lagos, Nigeria called Faaji Agba.  (trailer) The documentary was simply amazing.  It took Remi Vaughn-Richards about six years to film this group of 68-85 year old musicians who were rediscovered by the owner of Jazzhole Records,  Kunle Tejuosho.  If you get a chance, you should check out all of the above links.  An amazing story.

So back to my story.  Since watching the documentary I have set myself on a casual journey to find this fabled “Jazzhole” establishment that was profiled in the documentary.  Lagos can be a difficult city to get around in and my effort was a bit stymied by my work, traffic congestion, and just all of the normal things that force people to stay saddled in the nows of their lives.

I had a free day yesterday and decided to take a drive around to see if I could find the Jazzhole.  I drove by the location I thought the place was supposed to be according to my Blackberry’s Google map application and of course, there was nothing there but construction.

I drove down a back road, directly off of the main road and ran into this art cafe, restaurant, hotel, craft store called Bogobiri House. (The now of most Nigerians is that if you have some space you should use it wisely and get as much out of it as you possibly can.) Ironically, I had just randomly attended an open mic at this amazing little find two nights before.  Open mic here involves, improv Karaoke with a live band, poetry readings, and a host of musicians that play every type of instrument you can imagine.  I’m hooked.

After spending about an hour walking though this amazing find, I asked if the Jazzhole still existed and sho’ nuff, one of the guys at the Bogobiri House gave me directions.  Ironically, this iconic establishment was about a 10 minute drive from where I stood and only 15 minutes from my very home.

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I walked in and it was on the inside exactly what you would expect on the outside only better.

After walking around and seeing the massive amount of vinyl, cds, and books on every topic, I made my 2nd most exciting discovery.  I was standing right in front of the maker of the documentary I had just seen a few months before AND one of the members who had been profiled in this documentary.  The very same guy who is now between 70-80 years old (I think) and STILL playing jazz.  He was going to be playing at Bogobiri House that very evening.

WOW!!! Further, this very evening a little music exhibition was going to be playing at the Jazz Hole. The featured singers would be a young lady named Falana who I had never heard of before and who was simply amazing.  Not only was her voice unique, she was able to add some insight into the instruments she was using and while singing, encouraged the audience to sing along with her.  I was super disappointed that she only sang a few songs.

Her act was quickly followed by the main event, Blackman Akeeb Kareem. This was another musical soul who had become disenchanted with his now and left Nigeria for Europe.  However it happened, he was there and my own now was made incredible and better.  He was, and is at 70-something, an amazing musical story-teller.  He spoke of his time back in the day in the 60s and 70s and explained how Africans know that music is wasted if you are not up and dancing to it.

A man who has the ability to involve you in his story and the resolve to show you the now of his existence.  The now of how he believes Nigeria and the world could become if we would only listen.

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I know that just one random day in Lagos altered the now of my existence in Nigeria.  Thanks for stopping by.

Now

Sometimes, we get caught up in nostalgia, future fantasy, or both, and we don’t embrace the “now.” For this week’s challenge, take a moment to notice your present.

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  3. Beeblu
  4. Almandyne
  5. Daili
  6. Yichinling
  7. harlequinteaser
  8. joantwarren
  9. toobigabite
  10. Gillm