NO to Toxic Folks

“How do you handle toxic folks?” asked a co-worker. Without a word from me, she said “I think no matter what you do, no matter how hard you try, toxic people will always be who they are. I guess being toxic is a way of life for such folks.”

As she spoke, I listened actively, maintained direct eye contact but said nothing. Then she asked: “Are you going to say something or not?” Continue reading “NO to Toxic Folks”

Ms Golden

I drove randomly through my neighborhood’s busiest streets, made a right turn at the intersection and crawled up a steep, dark hill.

Just when I thought the traffic hassle was a done deal, I bumped into Ms Golden.

She greeted me with a stubborn stare, leaving me with a glare.

Sensing my discomfort, she flashed a sad smile, but that further aggravated my pain. I struggled to get away, but at every turn, she was there with raging rays.

I would eventually drive through the mainland, painstakingly concealing myself behind outstretched tree branches.

And …….. gradually, she faded away.

Abidjan Through Nabie’s Lens (Part II)

Scores of seasonal vendors line the streets of Adjamé, with wares on wheels

Welcome to Part II of my series on Abidjan. In my inaugural article, I explained why Abidjan is  still in my heart. The truth is, Abidjan’s exotic beaches, rolling hills, winding coastlines, thriving trading hubs, and clean crisp air are matchless. The memories and joy I experience when I am in Abidjan (Côte d’Ivoire’s main city) will always have a special place in my heart. In that article, I also provided a brief description of the Centre Artisanale de la Ville d’Abidjan. In case you missed Part I, I got you. Simply click the embedded link above and there you go….. Let’s now take a brief look at Abidjan’s main trading hot spot, Marché d’Adjamé, as well as the city’s infamous mall—the Abidjan Mall. Continue reading “Abidjan Through Nabie’s Lens (Part II)”

Abidjan Through Nabie’s Lens (Part I)

At exactly 23:59 on July 07, 2019, I touched down in the city of bright and bold colors; the city of zouglou and coupé decalé; the city of attiéké and alloco. Abidjan—a windy, wide awake city—was more than ready to welcome me after nearly six years of absence from its soil.

It was a steamy night, but I refused to let the soaring temperatures spoil my sense of excitement……. this was the beginning of my re-connection with this vibrant, progressive city. I left Abidjan on September 03, 2013 aboard Air France, en route to Washington D.C.—I had made an audacious decision to relocate to D.C. Continue reading “Abidjan Through Nabie’s Lens (Part I)”

Farewell to My Precious Mother

ABIDJAN It has been 40+ days since my precious mom left me. Her name was Koné, Fanta; she was born June 08, 1959 and made her peaceful transition on June 11th, 2019. Though I missed the opportunity of being with her when she passed, I am uber grateful for the privilege and honor to care for her. She made me laugh; she taught me to be strong and encouraged me to be independent in action and thought. Teeyah (as she was affectionate called) was an inseparable part of my life and world, and I was heartbroken the day she left. Below is a brief pictorial of a 40-day memorial and prayer service held in her honor. Continue reading “Farewell to My Precious Mother”

When Home Feels Gloomy

A cross section of friends and family at my mom’s 40-day prayer service

ABIDJAN Sunday, July 21, 2019, marked exactly 40 days since my rare, super cheerful mother left us.  But guess what? It still feels like seconds ago. How I wish this was just another horror dream that would be over soon, allowing me a chance to: (a) see my mom again, (b) hear the soft, sweet sound of her voice, (c) touch her silky smooth skin, and (d) feel the softness of her palm against mine. Continue reading “When Home Feels Gloomy”