Happy Papa Day


Anyone can be a father, but it takes someone special to be a dad, and that’s why I call you dad, because you are so special to me. You taught me the game and you taught me how to play it right. Wade Boggs

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When I was about 26, I found out the dad I grew up with was not my biological father.  Everyone thought I would freak out.  They freaked out.  Every single person in my family seemed to know this already.  Unbeknownst to me, I had so many people trying to solve this 26 year long mystery for me. They spent months trying to get to the bottom of it.

What they did not know is that I WAS shocked.  But not in the way they might have realized.  I was shocked that everyone in my family had kept a secret for 26 years.  My family has never been good at not blathering on about everything, every place and everyone they knew.  I WAS freaking out.. but only because I thought it would be so cool to have more siblings. I always wanted to come from a gigantic family.  Think Partridge Family or Brady Bunch.. I could start a band or..uh.. travel across the states and get into ridiculous escapades..well maybe not.. but I thought it would be cool.

More than anything I was amazed.  Amazed that the dad I grew up with, knew he was not my biological father and wanted to keep that a secret from me in order to avoid hurting me.  I never doubted for a second that he loved each of us deeply and without pause and as his own children.

He used to tell me I was his favorite.  I had his sense of humor, his walk, his work ethics.  I worshipped him.  I still do.  He was a steady beacon of light on the shore of a wild sea of women.  He was dependable, funny, and strong.  He was my dad, my papa, the man to whom all other men would need to aspire to win my heart.  I love you dad!!

Without my dad, I wouldn’t be here. Maria Sharapova

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My Dad is my hero. Harry Connick, Jr.

 

 

 

 

 

I’m on top of the world looking down on….


I feel like I’m on top of the world. Honestly, I feel like I’ve climbed a very giant mountain, and I’m just standing right on top with my arms wide open and breathing rarified air.  Shania Twain

I have had many opportunities to climb to the top of things (or fly over if the climb is beyond my limits.  I recently took my first helicopter ride in South Africa and climbed all over Table Mountain.  I hope you enjoy.

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Daily Post Atop Challenge – Some of my favorites

Trivial Mind, Starlight, mama, OHM, At home, witty, bend, Albina, hudson , intent, jaspas, changing, geriatrix, Cees, Lago, ladylee, wonderful, thirdperson

 

I am woman.. hear me…


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You.Are.Amazing.

As. you. are.
Stronger than you know.
More beautiful than you think.
Worthier than you believe.
More loved than you can ever imagine.
Passionate about making a difference.
Fiery when protecting those you love.
Learning. Growing. Not alone.
Warm. Giving. Generous.
Quirky. Sexy. Funny. Smart.
Flawed. Whole. Scared. Brave.
And so, so, so.much.more.

Be Strong. Be Confident. Be You. ~ Copyright: Tia Sparkles Singh, 2011

I have been living and working in Lagos, Nigeria now for 18 months.  One of my favorite things about this country is how vibrant and strong the people are.  Specifically the women.  Talk about inspiring folks.  Every day there is a new surprise that faces me down.  In celebration of International Women’s Day 2017, my friend and I visited the Nike Centre for Art and Culture.

Every time I visit this gallery I find about 200 pieces I would love to buy.  The work covers everything from photography, to bead work, statutes of wood and metal, oils, fabrics, and really just everything you can imagine.  Well, this installation was possibly my favorite as it covered all of the artistic genres mentioned with a focus on the strong women who create the work.

What I love even more is the owner of the gallery.  Nike Davies-Okundaye – Nike Davies-Okundaye a.k.a. “‘Nike Davies'” a.k.a. “‘Nike Twin Seven Seven'” a.k.a. “‘Nike Olaniyi'” a.k.a. “‘Mummy Nike'”  – Wikipedia

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Talk about a strong woman.  I. LOVE. HER.  She is Nigerian.  She is strong. She is intelligent. She is kind.  She is an art piece all by herself.  What an amazing person.  So generous with her time and her ability to explain every piece of art in her gallery.  If you make it to Lagos, Nigeria and do not stop in to her gallery, you are missing a treat!!

The art presented that was specifically on display for Women’s Day was spectacular.  Created by women about women.  I did not take enough photos to really give it due respect.

My favorite pieces were so amazing!! They were huge though.  If I only had a place big enough to house them.

All of the other work was equally impressive and to be fair, there were many more “favorites”.  Even the work not specifically on display for Women’s Day, had a flair that I could not stop going back to.

For more Nigerian artwork that focuses on the Nigerian woman’s perspective, this book would be an excellent choice to get started.  I hope you enjoyed the tour!

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Travel theme: Woman

Other woman links:

Woman! Women of Cuba A daily stroll through Bucharest ; Roaming Urban Gypsy2017/03/12/athlete/Woman | Ladyleemanila;

Even more exquisite


After a over a year in Nigeria, I was finally invited to a colleagues wedding.  I have heard the hype about the color, the fun, the dancing, the noise, the chaos and I have to say… it totally lived up to every rumor.  It was an amazing, loud, chaotic, and colorful event.

It has so far, been the highlight of my time in Nigeria. Let’s start with a few facts I mostly discovered at the time of the event.

First off, it’s not mandatory, but apparently it is very common for the bride’s family and friends to wear the same color of fabric as the bride and the same goes for the groom. They do this to identify who belongs to who.  In my office, we were offered an opportunity to buy the bride’s colors as she was our colleague.  So about 25 of us from the office dressed in the brides colors.   Despite the fabric color, the designs were all so beautiful and completely and uniquely different from each other and made to fit our own style and body..

Raining money.  This is not something that only happens in Nigeria for sure.  The money dance crosses cultures.  However, in Nigeria it seems that money rained down at many random points during the wedding ceremony.  The DJ bid out his services, children brought forth money, the couple danced down a row of guests and ended with family members tossing money at them while they danced and money just seemed to be collected throughout the event.  People usually rained down small amounts each time but it was a fun way to show your love!!

A few changes of the bride’s clothes

Pretty much anyone can wander into or out of one wedding directly into another.  I know this because I accidentally did it.  There were at least two weddings going on in the same area.  No one blinked an eye when I walked in, walked halfway through the hall, realized I was in the wrong place and walked back out.  It’s no wonder due to the constant commotion and chaos going on in every directions, dancing, drinking, eating, and talking.  Walking in and out of buildings and different rooms.  Changes of clothes and random musicians passing through.  Then there is the paparazzi – don’t ever tell me you don’t have any photos after attending a Nigerian wedding.  There are even professional photographers hanging out in the parking lot that will later sell you a photo of yourself…and yes I bought one.

Head gear and professional make up.  Not only are Nigerians dressed to a T, they have their heads professional wrapped and their make up professionally applied.  It can take hours just to put everyone’s make-up and headgear on.  It is not taken lightly.

Food and music and chaos.  All of it, ever kind of it and don’t forget the dancing.  I was so honored to be invited to this event and it is one of the things that I have been able to experience in Nigeria that I will NEVER forget.  I hope that I am able to attend one more wedding before I leave.  It was such an exhilarating experience and made me feel very close to the people I work with.

Lastly, I survived…I was even asked what part of Nigeria I was from.  More than one time.  Who would have thought..

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A woman who has not been twice married cannot know what a perfect marriage is. – Nigeria

Special posts that seem to align:

Some life, Banquet, Hey you, that night, Someday,  Invitation, socks and gloves, la petite, the affair,