Howard whispered two words to me that got me excited. He said “grilled fish” and I responded with a quick “let’s go!” It doesn’t take much more than the temptation of fresh fish, grilled to tasty perfection, to get me going to the ends of Africa.
And getting to the Abacha Barracks in the Mogadishu Cantonment outside of Abuja did seem like a drive to the ends of Africa – or at least the taxi driver bitched the whole way like it was. Once there, I was a little confused. We pulled up to what looked like a simple Nigerian market. There was nothing to make it look different than any other market. But I was told to walk into the middle.
Inside the Abacha Barracks market is a whole other experience. About 50 fish sellers are arranged in a circle with bars facing the circle of fishmongers. These fishmongers do not sell raw fish for you to take home however, they sell the best croaker and butterfish for direct grilling and eating right there.Read More
Sitting here on this Nigerian flight from Lagos to Abuja, I’m surprised to be the only “white” guy on the jet plane. That the majority of passengers are black Africans is not surprising of course, but its the other ethnicity present that shocks – Chinese.
And I do not mean a Chinese here or there. I would say that about a third of the flight is Chinese – not Asian, not Japanese, not Thai, Cambodian or Indonesian. Not even “Overseas Chinese” from Singapore or Hong Kong, but full on mainland Chinese who very much look the part.
Chattering away in putonghua, with the mannerisms and dress of middling businessmen, they are an uninspiring lot at first glance. But by the second or third take, I start to wonder what they’re doing in deepest Africa.Read More
Oh My God – WHERE IS MY PHONE!!! This is the thought that races through my mind and sends a chill through my heart as I frankly search my person for my Nokia N95. I am standing over my seat, as I put away my luggage on Kenya Airways Flight 0533, from Lagos to Nairobi, and I’ve just realized my phone is missing.
Again I recheck my person and my luggage and then it hits me – I’ve left my phone in the airport waiting area. I was so absorbed in composing emails to all my Kenyan contacts, letting them know of my impeding arrival, that I didn’t hear the first call for my flight.
When I finally did, I scrambled to the jetway, leaving my prized possession, my per-diem-paid-for N95 superphone behind, alone and vulnerable on a random seat. Where I now realize it must be sitting, just waiting to be found by its new owner.