FORTUNATE TRAVELLER
The wish to travel seems to me characteristically human: the desire to move, to satisfy your curiosity or ease your fears, to change the circumstances of your life, to be a stranger, to make a friend, to experience an exotic landscape, to risk the unknown, to bear witness to the consequences, tragic or comic, of people possessed by the narcissism of minor differences. — Paul Theroux; The Tao of Travel.
Non-fiction

Our Bell Boy by Femi Oyebode

Our Bell Boy, Raymundo, was not a boy at all but a full-grown man. He was a small, that is to say, short man, of slight build and weathered oak complexion. He was a Philippino. He carried our luggage up to our room on the first floor of the Atlantic Hotel. We are in Florence for a few days. He talked about Duterte, condemning Duterte’s vulgar language. I talked about Trump….

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Poetry

Addis Hot Box and Other Poems by Amanda Leigh Lichtenstein

ADDIS HOT BOX Two Addis sisters locked shoulders in a jello mould of jazz. The club was a hot box of twinkly stars and loose laws of rain. Smoked a pack of Nyala hoping for a husband that night. Spent decades in the bathroom, zipping up my past. It was midnight when I left, street dogs were falling in love, Howling commitments far exceeding any I had made In my…

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Non-fiction

Welcome to Abuja by Uche Orjinta

Because of the course I studied in university, I had the privilege to choose where to apply for my Student Industrial Training and Internship Programme. Well, my options were not varied. So I applied to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Abuja. And so began my love/hate relationship with Nigeria’s federal capital territory. Abuja is quite a distance from Lagos by road. Initially I had my reservations but being the…

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Photography & Art

Beyond the Sands by Irene Lopez de Castro

Perhaps we need a little introduction for today’s publication; it is necessary. However, the introduction is not chiefly about the artist we are publishing nor her work. And it is not meant to be misconstrued as an apologism or mere justification. It is meant to broaden our knowledge of the other forms of travel narrative. In our past publications, you have read travel stories in different genres of literature. But…

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Non-fiction

Benin City: Half of Everything Once Whole by Dare Dan

When you are riding in a public transport in Benin city and you want to alight, you don’t say ‘Owa o’, ‘E Dey’ or ‘Abeg I Wan Drop’ like you’d have said if you were in Lagos – no, not any of those clichés. In Benin city, you just say ‘Stop!’ The first time I heard someone bellowed ‘Stop’ from a back seat I was shocked until it dawned on…

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Non-fiction

Going H.U.N.G.A.R.Y: Of Bread, Notes and Paths Taken by Remi Raji-Oyelade

H Still, one of the joys of travelling is to come away with a pleasant mixture of learning and entertainment, a state of mind rarely attained when you are static, inert or supine to the history, literature and science of other peoples beyond your familiar region. My first ever journey to Hungary was primarily to concretise a technical collaboration in a unique research frontier that collapses the artificial borders of…

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Non-fiction

There Was A Stone: Entebbe, Lake Victoria and Kampala by Tade Ipadeola

The flight from Lagos stopped over at Kigali, Rwanda, and from there we flew onward to Entebbe, Uganda where we arrived on the anniversary of the Israeli Defense Force raid on Entebbe. Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli Head of State who lost a brother, Yonatan ‘Yoni’ Netanyahu, in that raid was marking the anniversary of the raid and making heavy weather of it. So, from the beginning, this visit to Uganda…

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Non-fiction

Of Love, Farts and a Pastoral Institute by Debbie Iorliam

It was with excitement that I threw some clothes into my backpack and headed for the road on a rickety bus. Even so vehicles in this part of the world are never in perfect condition. The harsh morning sun, mingled with sweaty smelling bodies, incessant and high pitched conversations sprinkled with farts that smelled like rotten eggs was an indicator that the journey would be a long one. Waved down…

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Non-fiction

Where to? by Jumoke Verissimo

Of dreams on wings… My toddler daughter loves butterflies. She says aeroplanes are iron butterflies and I do not fault the logic. I think of it at the airport as I wait for my flight to be announced; is the butterfly’s transformation a metaphor for the aeroplane advancing dreams from one state to another? I’m waiting for a metamorphosis into the one who writes a dream, and so I let…

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Non-fiction

Night Crawling in Douala by Dami Ajayi

You love to contemplate a new city at night, even better if you see it from the sky, a kaleidoscopic view of dotted lights and distances. Every encounter of a new city is both a unique and a comparison of previous experiences. Douala from the sky looks like a coastal city. The aircraft pierces the clouds, you look down and what you see is the ocean, looking tame from the…

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