You have been to London?
And Washington DC?
And, New York, Paris and San Francisco?
And you have traveled to all the capitals of African countries?
And you have been to Tokyo, Shanghai, and Beijing?
To Colombo, Jerusalem and Kathmandu?
And you are just landing from Miami and Chicago?
But you have never been to Lagos?
Don’t remove your traveling shoes
Because if you have not been to Lagos
Na lie, you never travel o.
You must go to Lagos
To be born again.
Full stop. Period.
I was born in Lagos.
My mother told me that she first experienced electricity in Lagos when she arrived there three years before she gave birth to me.
She could never get over the fascination of pinching the wall and seeing this bright light flooding the room.
Fela said that if you get to Lagos and you see a road sign indicating “Turn Left,” it means you must turn right.
All the greatest musicians in the world have been to Lagos, and Stevie Wonder was left wondering why he did not know about Lagos before 1977 when he came to perform during FESTAC.
James Brown came in the late sixties.
And Jimmy Cliff? He was jailed in Lagos.
Popular sayings about Lagos?
“Èkó Akéte ìlú ọgbọ́n.”
“Olówó Èkó, Èkó ní í gbé.”
–Adeolu Akinsanya, the Lagos musician, sang:
Fẹ̀ṣ̀o jayé lÉkò o
Sisí Èkó ẹ fẹ̀sọ̀ jayé
Èyí le o.
When I was in secondary school, and they asked us during “social gatherings” what is the full meaning of Lagos?
We answered Love All Girls On Saturdays.
Now it is Love All Guys On Saturdays.
I came head-first into the city of Lagos.
I left the city on my two feet, not looking back.