The Hope Journey

 

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Hope has no age barrier!

(Photo Credit: Flicker)

For the past two weeks, I’d thought of a girl I met several years ago, a girl who taught me about hope, she once told me that, ‘hope is an endless journey, it never stops because if it does, it ceases to be hope.’

This is a true story:

Roughly around thirty years ago, as I was pushing towards my tenth birthday, my dad moved us into an exclusive neighbourhood, it was an eight bedroom duplex with what we called boys-quarters at the back. It was massive with house-helps and guards posted to the front gate and all sorts of people tending the garden. The house fitted us perfectly, we were a large family of eleven. My mom had nine kids, but even at that, I desperately missed my friends.

I preferred our former house, it was a bungalow in a quiet leafy street where kids could play outside. Our new home was different, everyone I met tried to speak with a posh accent. I was wild at heart at that age, I loved adventures, running around, stealing past guards and walking through the woodlands behind our  home, giving my poor parents such grief.

Then one evening in September, the African sun was slowly receding into the clouds, I sniffed the air in contentment as I strolled along the road which led to our home with one of my brothers. A girl my age walked past and waved, she wore a white dress and green sandals, I waved back, stealing one more look. She had the kindest eyes, and a lovely smile. I liked her at once, maybe I’d found a friend at last. Within two weeks we met properly. She lived on the next street, and her dad was in one of those boring clubs my dad frequented, where middle age men drink and exchange business ideas.

Ayo and I became fast friends, if she wasn’t in my house I was in hers. She was extremely beautiful, I nicknamed her ‘china porcelain,’ because my mom had a set of china plates and heaven helped whosoever dared touched the plates, I think I broke one or two though! 🙂

She was very fragile, her pale, pallor skin often gave her an ethereal glow, more like a ghost at times but we still played hard. Sometimes I’d noticed the worried expression on her dad’s face but I ignored it, if I didn’t, I wouldn’t understand why he always seemed so pensive. She was my best friend and I loved her to bits, I didn’t for once think anything could be wrong with her. Then one day I visited her house and saw her sweating on the couch, she looked very ill. I touched her forehead and it was so hot. Her dad came into the living room and walked her to the door. They left for the hospital and I couldn’t sleep well that night.

Ayo stayed in the hospital for two weeks, I was dying to hear news but my parents just told me she would fine. I knew something wasn’t right. It was like that for almost six months, Ayo would be fine for one week, then she would be sick for four. One day in March, we were almost a year in our new home when she came in for a visit. Her eyes were bright and she looked healthy, I sensed she wanted to tell me something and when she did, I was clueless. My best friend had ‘Sickle-Cell Anaemia,’ a terrible disease of the blood. When she left, I went into my dad’s library and rummaging through his vast array of encyclopaedias (there’s nothing like Google then) found information on the disease. What I read was too advanced for my age, but at best, I understood her condition.

Three weeks later, on a hot Friday afternoon, I went to her house and saw her on the bare floor, writhing in pain. This time around, it was serious, she was crying and I held her head in my hands. Her mouth was dry and her eyes were yellow.

‘I’m so sorry.’ I kept muttering under my breath. I think my voice did a little trick and she stopped crying. She managed to sit up and gave me a weak smile.

‘Seyi, don’t ever give up on hope, it’s what kept me going all these years.’ She said and I laughed.

‘You’re just weeks older than me.’ I said, still smiling, I wanted to wish away her illness and pain.

‘If I didn’t have hope, I would have gone, but I stayed for my dad…’ there was silence, ‘and you.’ She added with a twinkle in her eyes. We hugged tightly and I felt a tremor passed through her body.

‘It’s time,’ her dad muttered looking down at us. I felt lost and my heart was beating very fast.

I helped her to her feet and into her dad’s car. Her elder sister stood in the doorway, her ashen face portend sad tidings. I stood beside the car, I wanted to follow her but was too scared. My parents walked in through their gate and spoke tenderly to Ayo’s dad.

That night, my eyes stayed open. The next morning, I dashed to Ayo’s house but the gates were locked. A week later, Ayo was gone. In a way, I was relieved she was no longer in pain, for my ten-year old brain, an ordinary fever is hell compared to the endless pain Ayo endured for her short stay on earth. However, I won’t really remember her for that debilitating illness, I would remember her warmth, faith and hope. She was a girl who believed in hope, and for someone like that, why can’t we have hope?

Although she passed, but I believe she did when she wanted to, she was way older than her years. If she were to be here today, I knew she would still be spreading her message of hope. Thank God for science, people with Sickle cell lived longer and less painful lives now.

Thanks for reading my long story, I try to keep my posts short but I’ve not posted for almost six weeks and I sincerely hope I haven’t bore you. I apologise for my absence, It wasn’t deliberate. I would visit your blogs as much as time permits. I love you guys and I hope you’ll all enjoy the rest of this week.

Much love, always! 🙂

 

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The Promise

 

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Such Innocence… rights words make great men!

Yesterday night I was rummaging through my eldest son’s stuff ( he was asleep by then 🙂 ) when I found this note stuffed in one of the pocket of his school trouser. I simply presumed one of his teachers must have given him in his new Secondary school.

Here it is, word for word:

”There are three things that you must never do in life, for any reason…

The first is use drugs. Some of them taste good and they whisper in your ear that they will make you feel better than you could ever feel without them. Don’t believe them. Promise me you won’t do it.

I promise.

The second is use weapons. Even if someone hurts your feelings or damages your memories or insults God, the earth or men, promise me you’ll never pick up a gun, or a knife, or a stone, or even the wooden ladle we use, if that ladle can be used to hurt someone. Promise.

I promise.

The  third is cheat or steal. What’s yours belongs to you, what isn’t doesn’t. You can earn the money you need by working, even if working is hard. You must never cheat anyone, all right? You must be tolerant and hospitable to everyone. Promise me you’ll do that.

I promise.”

And that was it. I was happy when I read it, I mean, there’s no preaching better than that. If our children, and even the society at large could adhere to this simple words, there would be no ISIS, no wars, and we would be having street parties daily. 🙂

*********

NP: Friends, I’m embarking on series of projects that would seriously impact on my ability to blog, nevertheless, I would always visit your blogs as often as I could, and I would also find time to write every week or every other week until New Year. Have fun guys and take care of yourselves. Remember this words, ‘Always do for other people everything you want them to do for you,’ Peter Nelson used to say that to me often, and he was my dad!

Much love, always!

🙂 🙂

The Mist…

 

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Pain Is Easy To Hide! How Sad!!

Dean’s (name withheld) right fist landed with such ferocious force that his wife’s head almost bounced off her neck, she screamed, making feeble attempts to defend herself but blows after blows landed on her body; her children watched in fear, unable to move. Janet (name withheld) ran out of the room but Dean followed, his eyes bloodshot, his blood raging with tyrannical fury. She tripped and landed on the floor as the orgy of violence continued, and then out of the blue, tiny fists landed on his back. The children couldn’t take it anymore, they felt they had to defend their mother. That was when he stopped. He stood up, his chest heaving up and down, staring at his wife on the floor, he spat out coldly,

‘If you come to the room again, I would kill you!’

Janet knew it wasn’t a bluff, she tried to control herself as her children wept beside her, their tiny bodies shaking with sorrow. She stood up with difficulty and reached for her phone. The police would save her, she thought with shaky hands as she dialled 999 and waited…

This is a true story, and I felt compelled to share it. If you are Janet, what are you going to do? Would you stay for the sake of your children or run for dear life?

This woman has faced years of abuse in the hands of her husband of nine years, yet, she stuck to him like glue. I told her to do what she thinks is best, I found it difficult to tell her what to do, even though I knew what I would do if I were in her position. However, if this beast in human clothing kills her, what would happen? He would probably get five years for manslaughter if he got a good lawyer. We all knew that Oscar Pistorius who killed Reeva, his girlfriend, is now on the verge of freedom, a suspended sentence, or would probably serve few years in jail.

I love happy endings but humans are such complicated creatures! Tonight, I wished Janet would leave that monster with her kids, but things are easier said than done! So I’ll be praying along with her and hope that she comes to a realistic decision soon, for the sake of her own safety and sanity.

******

Someone once said that life is like a mist, we appear and soon disappear afterwards and I believe that to be true. I want to appreciate everyone who left a comment on my last post ‘Unknown,’ https://seyisandradavid.org/2014/08/19/unknown/ I couldn’t pick the best answer, they were all sensible and great. I had wanted to send one of my three books in print to the winner, but because I couldn’t make up my mind, I decided to give three books instead with free postage and all that. The only thing is, if you want a copy of any of my books, you would read it and leave a review on Amazon. If you’re interested, please leave your email on my contact page and then I’ll be able to send you a message and get the details on how to send the said books.

I apologise for my protracted silence, I didn’t plan it but life just gets in the way all the time! I wish you all a beautiful weekend! 🙂 Whatever you do, just stay out of trouble and be good!

Much love, always! 🙂

The Two Face Monster!

 

the battle

I love this wise statement from Mahatma Gandhi, ”My religion is based on truth and non-violence. Truth is my God. Non-violence is the means of realising Him.” Gandhi extol the virtues of peace and truth, something I think the world lacks today. A friend of mine said recently that religion has shed more blood in human history and that was why he’s an atheist. Grudgingly, I agreed. People kill in the name of a god they have never seen, they destroy and slaughter without remorse and it made me think, shouldn’t religion be a personal thing? A private belief? A right for one to believe whatever one chooses to believe, without fear for one’s life?

But I guess, I’m wrong!

The recent campaign of hell unleashed on Christians and other sects like Yazidis by ISIS in Iraq is not something we can conveniently ignore any longer. Everyone has the right to live but things are not as easy as they seem, or are they?

America is a country which prides herself as a Christian nation. When our Prime Minister, David Cameron stated that Britain is a Christian nation, all hell broke loose! Many were quick to state the opposite, while others were quick to say exactly the same thing. I believe Britain is a Christian nation, and anyone who has a problem with that should go and study history. A nation, or people has the right to call or align herself to certain beliefs or way of life. It’s simple, that’s just ‘free will.’

By now, readers and friends of this blog know when I’m trying to approach a sensitive topic, and I’d wrestled with this for over a week now, so the only sane thing to do  is to write it down for, maybe posterity.

I am a Christian, and proud to be so. I would not apologise to anyone for that, because I have a right, and the will, to be a Christ follower. That shouldn’t be a problem, should it? But yeah, it could be a problem if I live in the northern part of Nigeria, or in Iraq, Syria, or Turkey. Islam claims to be a religion of peace, yet Christians are murdered in that part of the world. In Nigeria alone, Boko Haram has murdered more than 12,000 people, majority of them Christians, women, and children!

Let’s go back in history a bit. Let me use Turkey as an example. The country used to be a 100% Christian population before Mehmed II and his marauding soldiers came and destroy Constantinople and turned all their churches into mosques around fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. You may think that’s centuries ago but in 1895, during the ”Hamidian  massacres”  almost 300,000 Armenians were killed by the Ottoman empire who had ruled over them for more than six hundred years. In 1909, more than 30,000 Armenians were again murdered, their blood darkened the streets unchecked. Between 1914 to 1922, more 850,000 Armenians were murdered. Anyone in doubt can check this link for full details: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Armenian_Genocide

Writing in the late 1890s after a visit to the Ottoman Empire, the British ethnographer William Ramsay described the conditions of Armenian life as follows:

”We must, however, go back to an older time, if we want to appreciate what uncontrolled Turkish rule meant, alike to Armenians and to Greeks. It did not mean religious persecution; it meant unutterable contempt … They were dogs and pigs; and their nature was to be Christians, to be spat upon, if their shadow darkened a Turk, to be outraged, to be the mats on which he wiped the mud from his feet. Conceive the inevitable result of centuries of slavery, of subjection to insult and scorn, centuries in which nothing that belonged to the Armenian, neither his property, his house, his life, his person, nor his family, was sacred or safe from violence – capricious, unprovoked violence – to resist which by violence meant death!”

Anyone who says Islam is a religion of peace should go to Borno state in Nigeria, or better still, just type Boko Haram in YouTube and you would see all their gory acts explicitly displayed. If you live in Europe or other parts of the world like I do, don’t think  for a moment that we’re immune from such horrible and cowardly acts, it played out on our streets in London when a soldier was slaughtered like a common ram. True, some Muslims are saddened by the atrocities committed by this terrorists, but the fact remains that Islam seems to seamlessly perpetuate violence where all non-Muslims are considered ‘infidels’ and ripe for the edge of their swords or guns as the case may be.

Islamist terrorists would stop at nothing to maim and kill if given the chance but what do we do? Nothing! As a Christian, and a woman who believes in free will as God Himself does, everyone have a right to worship whomever they wanted, and if you don’t believe in a God seated in heaven, by all means, you’re right to have your opinion. But to impose the will of a certain religion on people, that’s just wrong.

Children as little as five were beheaded in Nigeria, Syria and Iraq. Women were stoned to death or had their throats slits. Christians were rounded up and shot or forced to convert to Islam and then still, they were beheaded. This is not the fifteenth century but it’s happening now. And my fear is that, if this two-faced monster is not curtailed, they could overrun everywhere. People of all faiths should stand up to this threat. Yesterday I read in the newspaper that British grown terrorists were seen distributing leaflets urging Muslims to join their unholy war in Iraq.

This is the Twenty-First century, and by God, Islamist terrorists would fail in their quest to kill and maim the innocent. I’ll be praying, and I hope the US, UK, Europe and other people intent on protecting the sanctity of human life would rise to this threat and quench this rampaging two-faced beast in the name of religion. I believe in peace with all people of all race, colour and way of life, but there would always be those who loves death, as Osama Bin Laden once said, ”Americans love life but we love death.” I pray that humanity would conquer this monsters.

To all my friends worldwide, have a great weekend.

Much love, always!

Homecoming!

 

Glenda Otero

Happy Father’s Day!

Today, my husband and I watched several videos of military men and women coming home after a tour of duty, and I couldn’t help but cry. Father’s day isn’t the only day to appreciate men (and women) who risk their lives to make us safe. Daily, we ought to appreciate the men in our lives, for their devotion, love, and care.

My son made the day worthwhile by giving my husband a hand-made card with this beautiful poem. With his permission, you can read it below:

When I scratched my knee,

Or if I bumped my head,

When I was afraid of the dark,

Or that thing under my bed.

When I cried that night,

Or even in the day,

You were there for me

To make it okay!

*****

His dad had a huge grin on his face and they hugged  tightly. I kind of missed my dad, but I was privileged to have enjoyed almost forty years with him. To all fathers worldwide, whether you’re serving in the military, or serving to put food on the table for your family, I wish you all a Happy Father’s day!

Here’s a very heart-warming video of serving military men returning home, I wonder if you’ll shed a tear! 🙂

To the men… You Rock!!

Have a great week my friends! Please keep safe!

Much love, always! 🙂

Seyi David

Avanlanche: The Fall…

Morning on Winter Landscape

            (Photo credit: Krappweis)

The air was crisp and clean, the sky blue and clear. Amanda inhaled deeply, imagining the stress leaving her body. She watched her husband from the corner of her eyes: the sharp, well-shaped jaws, the bushy eyebrows, and the serious expression almost drew a chuckle but she clamped down on it.

It was their last day in Switzerland and against all odds, she had truly enjoyed herself. Now she had to confront her husband and tell him the real reason she wanted a divorce. They walked towards their cabin in silence as Amanda cleared her throat noisily. Pete gave her a quick sideways glance and opened the door.

Amanda strolled towards the sofa and sank into it, while Pete removed his gloves and boots.

‘I slept with Alex!’

Pete stood still like a statue, even the sweat on his brows froze in disbelief. He ground his teeth and approached his wife menacingly. Alex had been his friend from childhood. They were practically brothers, what a fool I’d been! He thought in anger but something held him in check, he didn’t believe it.

‘When?’ He mouthed the words and knelt in front of his wife, his eyes were incredibly dry and he looked very calm.

‘Three months ago…’ she closed her eyes briefly, ‘the night we had a fight on the phone.’

‘Where?’

‘I called him and he came over to the house.’ Amanda involuntarily put her hand to her mouth as if she’d said too much.

‘We made up when I got back Amanda!’ Pete said slowly, strangely, his anger had dissipated.

‘I know…’ and she began to cry, ‘for what’s worth, I had no recollection of it as such. I was wasted, very drunk.’

Pete made up his mind there and then to fight for his marriage but Amanda was not finished.

‘Three weeks later I found out I was pregnant.’

That was when Pete lost it. He picked Amanda up effortlessly and almost hurled her against the wall, she wailed on his shirt, expecting the worse, then like a China plate, he put her down gently. He hurriedly put his gloves on, wore his shoes and rushed out of the cabin.

Two hours later, there was a knock on the door, Amanda hurriedly opened it, worried sick. Standing calmly at the door were two Swiss officers, their expressions looked grim. Amanda crumpled to the floor in a faint…

………………….

NP: It wasn’t all bad news though! 🙂 Pete was trapped in an avalanche but luckily, he’d survived. Amanda gave birth to twin sons… Well, when she did the DNA paternity test, Pete was the father of her sons. Their marriage survived. Pete quit his job in the City, and now had his own company. They went through months of counselling and the last time I spoke to Pete, he sounded optimistic, but he confessed that it was hard. However, he loves his wife, he’d forgiven her and was determined to give their marriage a chance to heal.

Relationships are not easy, Amanda and Pete had made up their mind to fight for their marriage and I wish them the best. To all my friends all over the world, I won’t wish you love because today is Valentine, I’m wishing you love all year round. May your hearts find peace and joy!

Much love, always!

🙂

The Beast

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(Photo Credit: Flickr)

Laura had trouble sleeping, she watched enviously as her husband slept soundly like a baby. She closed her eyes and willed her body to relax, fifteen minutes later, it worked, and she drifted off into a fitful sleep. Claps of thunder woke her up hours later, reluctantly, she opened her eyes and listened as flashes of light competed in a show of power. However, amidst the thunderous symphony, she also detected a faint but familiar sound, she listened and froze with fright when she realised it was the voice of Anna, her fourteen year old daughter.

She turned to touch her husband, but he wasn’t there. Panicking, she leapt out of bed and slowly crept down the stairs. Someone was in her home, a stranger. Her heart in her mouth, she moved stealthily, afraid to alert the intruder. By now, Anna was howling, Laura threw caution to the wind and breezed into the kitchen, grabbed a large knife and dashed into her daughter’s room.

Ashley, her husband of eighteen mouths was lying on top of her daughter, naked waist down. Anna stopped crying when she saw her mother and Laura felt alien, as she seemed to move out of her body… Swiftly, she raised the knife above her head.

………..

Two years later, Anna walked briskly down a hallway, her heart beating with love. It was Valentines Day, and, the love of her life is in prison. Many people called her mother a beast, but she knew that it was her Step-father who was the real beast. He had repeatedly raped her, threatening to kill her mother  if she uttered a single word to a living soul.  As far as Anna was concerned, the death of Ashley was a welcome relief. Her mother would be out in a couple of years, and with her mother by her side, life couldn’t be better. They would live happily ever after!

………….

NP: I am a realistic writer, if you’ve read any of my books, you should know by now that I’m not afraid to tackle difficult subjects, and this was a very difficult topic for me to write. Many women are trapped in abusive relationships, where their partners are raping or had raped their daughters – it’s an ugly scenario. But it could be stopped: there are warning signs really, when your partner is unduly interested in your daughter, that leery, lustful look is often too glaring to hide, (mind you, not all Step-fathers are Ashley!)  Left for me, I wish all marriages ended with ‘the happily ever after theme,’ but that would be living in a fairy tale world. Even though I don’t support what Laura did, the beast in some people cannot be tamed, they can only be stopped!

………….

Where there are beasts, there are also saints. Like Hugh Mackay would say: ‘ Nothing is perfect. Life is messy. Relationships are complex. Outcomes are uncertain. People are irrational.’

I hope you’ll all have a pleasant week. I’ll be back on Thursday with a very interesting topic in my ‘happily ever after theme!’

Much love, always!

🙂 🙂