Eating My First Bowl of Amala and other things Returning To The West Has Brought Me

When I informed my family and friends that I was posted to Ondo State for my National Youth Service, after spending the last year in Ile-Ife, Osun State most were of the opinion that I held some kind of bond to the Southwestern part of Nigeria.

I have always loved the West as a child, without (good) reason, and even though I make frequent trips to Lagos, it was not until last year that I experienced the West for all that it embodies. I have never had to geniculate to greet an elder, attempt to eat amala with ewedu or say, ‘Mi o gbo Yoruba,’ when someone says something to me in Yoruba that I do not understand.

The picturesque hills of Ikare-Akoko, Ondo State.

When fate had me returning to this part of the country, I decided it was either to learn something I missed out in the course of the last year, correct a misconception or understand better a few things that puzzle me.

For whatever reason I have to spend the next year in the West, I am open to the thrills, new experiences I will have and new persons I would meet. This time, in a largely different setting, a livelier city, and on much better terms – a Nigerian Corp Member with an abundance of time and goodwill.

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