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Is it possible to hate and love someone or something at the same time? Maybe hate and love are two strong extremes - I think somewhere in between hate and love, we learn to be indifferent or we learn to tolerate.
For what it’s worth, Lagos seems to be that Lover that we love and/or hate, or are indifferent to, or we now tolerate because ‘man must survive.’
If it’s not traffic conspiring to frustrate our day, it is the yellow buses without shock absorbers throwing your waist into potholes. There’s also the ridiculous housing cost for substandard buildings and poor road networks in the city. If it’s not these things, we’re dealing with thugs and thieves jumping us for the little cash they think we have but don’t have.
I was checking Twitter the other day and I saw prices of really good apartments in Ibadan going for 250k, of course I thought it was a scam because can anything be this good at that low rate?! Guys, It’s not a scam! Housing is more affordable and even better in cities like Ibadan, Abeokuta, Ekiti etc. Upon seeing this, I thought to myself that it may be better to relocate to Ibadan and spend less while enjoying a better lifestyle rather than stay in Lagos and be frustrated by the city and her wahala.
But on a second thought, I realize why I’m still in this city:
It’s not a secret that Lagos is a budding economic city, unlike some other cities in Nigeria, Lagos is fast paced and almost never sleeps. Most petty shops open early and close late in Lagos - this helps for business transactions. In contrast to Lagos, states like Osun, Oyo won’t afford you that luxury. Imagine you’re returning late from work and you want to buy bread at 10pm - sorry oh.
Alternatively, you can consider a city like Abuja which isn’t as fast as Lagos and still offers high economic opportunities. The only problem here is - ‘how deep is your pocket?’
Lagos is also favorable for different work sectors ranging from entertainment to tech to arts and culture which not many cities in Nigeria are disposable to. As a scriptwriter, even though I work freelance, I’d want to be closer to the action - yes, it’s not a far distance if I moved to Ibadan for example, and commuting can even be easier considering the new trains which should start operating in full flight soon, but most people work and live in the same city for obvious reasons - you don’t want to be far from work.
The rush we’re conditioned to endure in Lagos isn’t great for our physical or mental health. After spending hours in traffic, we’re physically and mentally exhausted and probably just want to sleep before doing the same thing the next day - this leaves little or no time to bond with families and friends; this is detrimental to normal human relationships. Also, sicknesses can arise from intense strain on the body.
Productivity at work is also reduced when we’re not functioning at optimum capacity, no thanks to the standard of living. Low productivity also means there’s a risk of losing the job - so how would we even survive in this city?
Until the Government finds a lasting solution to issues like roadblocks, lack of basic amenities, unemployment etc., we have to either find a way of out the monotonous system and preserve our lives and relationships with the ones we love or we just rinse and repeat daily (as most people do) in the hopes that one day things will be better.
And maybe when we observe the full picture, Lagosians are not the only ones in bad relationships, Nigerians are also in an abusive relationship...and there may just be one way out - Canada PR (Lol)