I’m in Africa.
Holy shit, I’m in Africa.
Woke up to explosive thunder that shook the building and rainfall so intense to sound like hail.
Flights were uneventful. Slept for a decent amount on both, thanks in part to Benedryl. Forgot how disoriented it makes you upon waking up. Light does funny things to the brain – I’d fall asleep w/ it light outside and wake up with it dark two hours later because of the flight path, yet I’d psychologically feel like I’d been asleep a lot longer.
Eating eggs and toast right now that were premade in Israel. It’s microwaved. What a bizarre dining room for a hotel…
Saw my first AK-47 in real life. The airport was teeming with military and police. I must say, the intimidation tactic is quite effective – I certainly didn’t want to stir up trouble. The “customs” process was hilarious. There was a team of imposing guards in uniform standing at the exit of the airport terminal. I slowly walked by, looking at them questioningly, and they simply waved me on. That was it. No lines, nothing.
Roads are commonly shared by pedestrians and cars. As such, honking is common, more as a rudimentary form of communication. Roads are not designed for high speeds: even at 30 mph, we seem to be flying down the road. It’s partly because the road is narrow and the spacing of the stripes. It doesn’t help that drivers think of lanes as a suggestion.
Today I complete the journey to Anambra. (I stayed overnight in Lagos.) Should be a lot faster trip. Spent so much time on planes that I’ve lost sense of time and my internal clock. I have no idea where my normal sleep schedule is right now.
There’s a Nigerian soap TV show playing in the dining room. Some things never change. Editing is rather amusingly sparse. There are definite moments of dead time as actors deal with some logistical issue – opening up a wrapped item, turning a car around in a dead end, etc. Such moments would be cut out of an American show, but here the actors are left to their own devices to make up time.
Haggling is commonplace. Street vendors aggressively shop their wares. The savvy buyer can talk them down by 2-5x the original price. My driver, Emmanuel, bought a Blackberry leather cover for 500 Naira ($3.25); asking price was 2500 Naira ($16).
Local Nigerian airport security is quite lax. The security checkpoint consisted of one guard and a rickety old X-ray scanner. Didn’t remove shoes, belt, etc. Pretty nice to not wait in lines for 2 hours.
Plane just called. Off we go.