My First Tattoo! Africa!

Image

I am not really a fan of Tattoo’s to be honest and i always said i would never get one unless it was very meaningful to me. so after seeing some tattoo ideas i decide this one was perfect for me and i would never live to regret it as it means so much to me. I have it on my lower ankle on the inside ūüôā The reason it means so much to me is because it will always remind me of being in Africa and always remind me of my happiest moments. As you can see it is not only the African continent but also a beautiful lady carrying a pot on her head. As most people know, this is how most people around Africa carry many things on a daily basis so it represents culture as well as Africa as a continent! I love it so much and i think its the most beautiful tattoo ive ever seen so i had to get it! ūüôā Now i have Africa with me where ever i go! ūüėÄ You can see some photo’s below of the process while getting my tattoo ūüôā¬†

Image

 

 

Advertisements

Education In Africa

p2_girl_in_class_2

My post today is not to talk about how education is carried out in Africa because i know it is not the same in all countries around Africa. My post today is more about why education is seen differently in countries in Africa than in other parts of the world. Now, First of all i will start by saying this post is not to offend or insult anyone or to make anyone look smarter or better than anyone else. It is simply to give people an understanding of how education is seen in Africa compared to other countries like UK or USA etc. I will be using UK as an example as i was born and raised in the UK while spending all my life learning about Africa and traveled to Africa. So i feel i have witnessed and understand a lot about the way education is seen in both the “western” world and in Africa.

A lot of people can be judgmental about westerners and how some don’t take education as serious as they should but i have to just say, its not always the kids fault. If someone is born into a certain culture and way of life they simply feel they are doing no wrong. Also there is thousands of children who focus their whole life on their education so i don’t think the stereotype is always true.

Anyway, if we take a look at education in certain parts of Africa we can see it is somehow looked at differently, which i experienced when visiting schools around Ghana , other than the obvious things like language, culture and religious education which is sometimes different in each country but other than that the subjects are basically the same Maths, Science, history etc but how adults and children around Africa look at education is kind of different to the UK. I believe that this is because, in Africa, Education is EVERYTHING! Without education there is almost no opportunities for young children and young adults to gain employment or work placement or a better future. YES education is very important world wide! BUT in some countries like the UK, there is help from our government and other options and opportunities for young adults to gain employment and better their life’s. For example there is something we call “get ready for work” Course which young adults can join even without school qualifications, this scheme is funded from the Scottish government education funding. On these courses they will find a work placement for you and also train you how to do well in the work place as well as a small salary, not much (around ¬£55 per week) which is not a lot in the UK as living costs here are very high, BUT it is still an excellent opportunity for young adults who want to better their life and gain work experience. In Africa an opportunity like this is no common at all and some governments in Africa don’t help with free education or courses. So having good grades and education is very much essential if you want to better your life.

If you know any parents or friends from Africa it is most likely that they do ALL they can to assure their children have the best education they can and do well in school and pass! It is not always easy to get money in some parts of Africa to pay for good education but for those who are fortunate enough to get the chance to go to school or university then it is extremely important that they give it their all! Some people think African parents are too strict on education with their children but no, they are not. They simply want a better life and future for their children and they have worked hard to get the money to make that possible.

I totally admire the friends i have all over Africa as they are totally focused on their education and try hard to make their parents proud. As for the parents who work so hard to fund their kids education i take my hat off to you all! It is even hard for some people to gain employment in Africa even after graduation so i really pray that the future will start to look up for Africa and i pray everyone gets the chance to have a good and comfortable life after all the hard work and effort put in.

Well i hope you enjoyed reading my post for today and i hope it has been informal.¬†I¬†do know that i may not¬†know¬†everything about Education in Africa and i may have missed a few facts but this is judging from my experience and what i know so far.¬†Feel free to share your comments but keep it friendly please as i will just delete negative comments ūüôā Thanks again and thanks for all the lovely comments so far.

Ese Pupo! ūüôā

People of Africa

Image

My reason for this post today is mainly to let people know who dont already know, how people from different Countries in Africa really are, as a lot of people judge people from Africa before even getting to know them! I am NOT Generalizing Africa as a whole, i am talking based on MY experience with people from ALL over Africa not only one or two countries in Africa, this is why i used the term “People of Africa”.. ¬†this post is not about one country in Africa, its about MANY countries around Africa.

Another reason for this post is just to express how i feel about my friends from Africa and show them they are appreciated a lot by me. Most people from Europe or America or other parts of the world, Judge people from African Countries based on Bullshit lies! excuse my language!

Some of the most common things i have heard from people is

“All Africans use white girls”

“All Africans live in slums”

“All Africans love money too much and scam everyone”

“All Africans are evil and kill children and do ‘voo-doo’

“All Africans cant speak English well”

“All Africans are under educated and living in Poverty”

And MANY more!

I have to say, i get very irritate around people who say such rubbish! Let me just say, not all people from African Countries use white girls, Yes there may be some but believe me not ALL! There is many people from all over Africa who love someone for who there and that’s it! Just like every other race!

Also, let me just add, not all people in Africa love money and scam everyone.. that is rubbish! i think people judge Africa based on one or two stories they hear on the news! Also, most Africans cant speak English well?? What?? This is one of the stupidest ones i have heard, As all of my friends in Africa, weather they are Kenyan, Ghanaian, Nigerian or South African, Can speak AND write English very well, even some know English more than i do! lol

“All Africans are under educated” REALLY??? NO! Another huge judgmental LIE! The smartest people i know on this earth, are from Africa! ALL of my friends from countries in Africa are extremely smart and have GREAT potential.. Yes not everyone in some parts of Africa can afford good education but that does not make them dumb or stupid!

“All Africans kill children” Again, Really?? i really believe this one is from watching too much TV! People from African countries are not cruel and evil! Every country and continent has good and Bad people. Dont judge Africa based on hear say!

And NO! Africa is not all slums! look around and see how beautiful Africa REALLY is. Take your time to really explore countries in Africa to see how great they are.

I spend endless time trying to make my British friends see that there is soo many lovely and amazing people around Africa. Almost all of my friends are from countries in Africa and its been that way since childhood, also i have never dated any white or British guy, This is not because i hate British people but it is simply because i feel more happy and comfortable around my friends from Africa and also in relationships i feel that i am more connected to people from different countries around Africa and have more things in common and also they are very loving people. To say all countries and people in Africa are great would be a lie. Yes, not all people in Africa are great and there are many countries in Africa that have bad people just like every other continent in the world, but to judge people from Africa before getting to know them is one of the biggest mistakes people make.

For me i honestly do not know where i would be today if i didnt have my friends in Africa and in UK who have came from Nigeria and Ghana and Kenya etc. From a very very young age, i have grew with them close to me, like my brothers and sisters, friends is an under statement. they truly feel like family. Another thing i LOVE about people who have came from countries in Africa, They are EXTREMELY friendly when u meet them. They greet you in such a warm way and speak very politely to you. Also going to African markets/ restaurants in UK, is one great experience for me, because i get greeting nicely and treated very well.

I have friends from all over Africa but mainly in Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Gambia and south Africa. So based on the people i have met from there, i can honestly say Africa has some wonderful people! I can guarantee if you take the time to actually get to know people from different countries in Africa before judging them, you will realize how wonderful they really are, They will make you feel loved and appreciated in all you do. When i am having a bad day at work or any other situation, It is my friends in Nigeria, Ghana etc i turn to as they are always friendly, loving and supportive. They also keep me calm in hard situations! hehe countries in Africa are not full of scam artist and dying kids and people killing people! look beyond the bad things and see the wonderful things! Like i said before, Every Continent has good and bad.

Anyway, i feel like typing all day as i cant find the exact word to describe the people of Africa, but i have work in the morning and i have to get to bed hehe

Thanks for taking the time to read this and i hope you have learned something and made u think twice.

Ese Pupo. Odaro

Mungo Park (The First Westerner to explore The River Niger)

Image

I have wanted to write this for a while now but had other subjects in mind to write about first.. Anyway this post may not interest everyone but it interests me so i had to share it ūüôā

I came across the name Mungo Park after my boyfriend mentioned something about him.. so i took it upon my self to learn more about him as i am a major history freak when it comes to Africa lol.. it turns out i have a lot in common with him other than the fact that we share the same surname..

Mungo Park is also Scottish like me and also had a massive interest for Africa, again, like me lol He was a Scottish explorer of the African continent he was the first westerner to encounter the central portion of Niger River, or so i read.. He studied medicine and botany in Edinburgh university and later went on to do a course in Natural history..

I also read that he completed his studies by completing his exams in London. After studies he then started work and offered his services to The African Association. The African Association was a club dedicated to exploring West Africa.

Mongo Park set out for Africa and reached the Gambia River on 21st of June 1795,  he then chose the route crossing the upper Senegal basin and through the semi-desert region of Kaarta. He was captured and imprisoned for four months.. i am not entirely sure why but i will find out one day lol.. he then escaped on the 1st of July 1796, he had nothing but a horse and a compass with him. on the 21st of July he reached the long-sought Niger River at Segou, he was now the first European to reach river Niger. He followed the river downstream 80 miles to Silla, where he was obliged to turn back, as he was lacking the resources to go further.

On his journey back to Scotland he fell sick at Kamalia. A man then took him in for seven months and helped him. ¬†He was thought to be dead but then returned to Scotland with news of discovering the River Niger which brought a positive¬†reaction from the public. He then went on to write a very successful book called “Travels in the interior districts of Africa” which was about his travels all around Africa, how he survived and the people he met along the way which gave Europeans a idea of what Africa is really like. I am yet to read this book as its hard to find after all these yearz, but im looking into finding it.

Mungo was then invited back By the government to lead another expedition to the Niger. He accepted, and made his way to Gambia then to Bussa.  Mungo park died in Nigeria in 1806 after their ship hit a rock in Bussa and they were attacked with bow and arrows by people, mungo and others on the ship drowned.. One of the slaves who were on the ship, Survived.  He then went on to tell the final scene of mungo parks story..

Mungo parks son set out to find his father after being lead to believe he was being imprisoned . unfortunately mungos son died of fever soon after.

Mungo Park’s remains are buried along the banks of the River Niger in Jebba Nigeria. After mungo parks death, westerners then started to gain interest in Africa and they wanted to explore more.

I find this story very fascinating and could read about it all day! My family and friend like to joke that Mungo Park must be my ancestor lol I also joke about it too.. It is funny that i also have plans to move to Africa and explore Africa and planning to buy a house in Nigera.. Is Mungo park my ancestor? We are both Scottish, both have a huge interest in Africa with Nigeria at the top of the list and we share the same surname hehehe..

Anyway i read alot about him and if any of the information i wrote is incorrect, please feel free to correct me as i am happy to learn more and i am not an expert on Mungo Parks story.

This was a long post but i wanted to share this story as i found it very interesting and believe anyone else who loves African History will love it too.. I would also recommend reading his full story as it is more detailed than this post i wrote..

Thanks for ready and feel free to correct me on anything ūüôā

Bring Africa to you!

Image

As most people know, I have always wanted to go and¬†experience life in¬†different countries around Africa since i was a small kid.¬†Unfortunately it is not that easy ūüė¶ First of all because i was too young and had to finish school etc Then when i grew up i wanted to finish studying and work to save money. AGAIN¬†unfortunately it was not as simple as that. When i started working it became impossible to save money. After paying bills and daily living expenses i had almost no money left to save. So yeah, Its been a long wait for me to live my dream. So now i have been fortunate enough to travel to Africa every year!

The reason for this post is to show people that just because you are not in the country you would like to be in, doesn’t mean you cant bring the country to you ūüėČ For the past 10 years or so, I have been living in a way that is more African than Scottish lol¬†It’s very sad for me to not be able to hope on a flight and visit my favorite countries around Africa any time i want. So, until the time of my yearly trip, i continue living in a way that i would if i am in any country in Africa…only that i am in Scotland!

I would like my friends to read this and gain something from it as a lot of my friends feel sad and miss home. So let me just give u some tips on how to feel at home even if you are not at home ūüôā

First of all i would say, don’t change your diet just because you are not in Your country. Of course there will be days you eat some pasta or some local food of the country you are in but continue eating your¬†Favorite Ghanaian or Nigerian food too! I eat Nigerian/Kenyan/Ghanaian food every week and it really makes me feel like i am enjoying a part of Africa ūüôā Some of my¬†awesome¬†cooking skills below :p

Image

Secondly, I always play music everyday anywhere i go i have my headphones in blasting my favorite Ghanaian and Nigerian songs! It is also a way of feeling connected to those countries in particular.

Third, Don’t change your dress code to “fit in” with the country you are in. Their is nothing more pleasant for me than seeing ¬†people in the UK with their traditional wear. Beautiful! I love to also wear and buy many clothes from different countries in Africa and head wraps. It makes me feel like i am showing my¬†personality¬†on the outside!

Also i would say, don’t forget you mother tongue when you are out of your home country. Yes, of course u need to speak English to the public who don’t understand your own language , but other than that, always use you native language. I also like to Learn languages so i can communicate and join in conversations with my friends who have came from countries in Africa.

Another thing to make you feel connected to Africa is to always get regular updates on news and what is happening in your country in Africa. I LOVE to read and learn new things about all countries around Africa and i always have. This makes me feel very connected and know so much about African countries as if i have been living there my whole life!

If you haven’t REALLY studied and learned about a country then you wont feel connected to it even if you have been there. I am very sure i know more about many countries in Africa than some people who have lived in or been to many countries in Africa lol This is because i do all i can to stay connected and learn all i want to know about Africa. I even wanted to studying a course called “African Studies” at College but instead, I just spent my whole life reading and teaching myself. Saved my self the Huge¬†University¬†fee too haha!

Anyways i hope you enjoyed reading and i hope you have taken something from what i said. Please don’t loose your connection to Africa no matter where u go.

Thanks for reading ūüôā

Africa wa ni okan mi ‚̧

Image