It was very apt that I am writing this after I read Wana’s post on Bella Naija. As I am doing this for a friend, I decided to also write about friendship.
I am going to start this post by saying, I don’t have many friends. I was that weird child sitting on her own at a kiddies party, or sat by myself at school. I have loved my own company since I was a little girl. I have a very active imagination, nurtured by parents who basically threw books at me, ever since I could read, so there was not that much reason to be sociable. I was alive and sociable in my head, I am till this day. My mum worried about this a lot and she kept deliberately making attempts for me to socialise and interact. She kept saying Ola, you can’t continue like this, you need people, people will just dislike you, or stay away from you without getting to know you. She said this one sentence in Yoruba “oju e tile ju”. In English for, your face is too stern. It wasn’t because I was frowning, but I was too busy lost in my own thoughts. I am much warmer now and sociable. Or at least, I hope so but a lot of the time, it hasn’t served me well.
Two things mean a lot to me with friendship. Loyalty and Giving back. It means everything. If I can’t count on those two with you, you are just an acquaintance. I am loyal to a fault with people I care about. You make an enemy out of my friend, you better arm yourself well, because you will have me to deal with too, and I don’t play nice. Trust me, you would rather want me on your side in a fight and not against you. Disloyalty is something I don’t handle well, whether it is a good or a bad thing not to handle it well, I am still figuring it out. You are my friend and if I can’t count on you to stick your neck out for me in a time of crisis i.e. stand up and be counted, we are going to stop being friends. You take sides with your other “friends” and leave me to fend for myself, we are going to stop being friends. I take loyalty very seriously. Please someone else, put on a show for someone else at my expense, nah, aint nobody got time for that, because I would put you first, consider your feelings or at least try to, and it is not asking for too much to expect the same from you. If I didn’t show you that, please you are under no obligations to me loyal to me. I dish out what I know I can take. Loyalty should mean something in friendship, a whole lot othewise y’all are pretending acquaintances. Talking smack about you in the presence of people, which is something a lot of “friends” seem to be comfortable doing or keeping quiet and ignoring while your friend faces the firing squad, nah that’s disloyalty. If I have suddenly stopped talking to you, you betcha, you were likely disloyal.
The other most important thing to me is Giving Back. Cripes, the world is full of users and we are surrounded by them, even in our so called inner circle. They will happily take from you, and when it is time to give back, especially in the times you don’t even ask for it, that is when you will turn back and if you are lucky, find one or two people, or worse, none at all. If I have suddenly stopped talking to you, or kept my distance, chances are you are a user. This 2014, I just had about had enough. As you get older, you just find that you tolerate some things less, because carrying on in life, you should be able to know those who you can freely give of yourself to, go above and beyond for, not because you want something back in return, but because of who you are. Then when people, gladly let you be yourself with them and don’t feel the compulsion to reciprocate, nah, out the door you go. You can only give so much. If it is not replenished, you are going to get burnt out. This 2014, I said no to users. Chinese wall between me and them. It is not too occupied on my side of the wall, but you know what, I have peace, and my life feels surprisingly fuller. The few I can see, are just about enough. Omolabake Bode-Matthew is one of those few.
One of those good people, one of those you can betcha is going to come out and be counted if she sees you under attack. I have watched her display this on so many occasions, I knew we were kindred spirits. This is someone that has gone out of her way to get me things from Lagos. Packets and packets and packets of Eja Osan, which cost a pretty tidy sum, local clay pots, native salt, I can continue listing. For my Anniversary giveaway, she went round to stores in Lagos looking for food processors for me. She went to some stores twice, she took the issue of me getting food processors that I promised readers personal. She called me back and forth and when we agreed on the model to buy, she brought out her money and paid for two, even before I sent money to her. She arranged for collection for both winners. Leaving her house to go meet them at a neutral place. For someone I only knew months ago, I was in awe. To be honest, never had anyone do that for me before. Even “friends” I have known for ages. I know lots of people in Lagos, lots of “friends”. They haven’t even asked how the blog is doing, not to talk of helping me buy food processors. I looked around and there wasn’t anyone out of all of them I could turn to, except Labake. It even gets better. My mum has an ongoing marketing campaign for her new school in Lagos. The bulk of it involves direct contact with prospective parents, to share flyers and discuss. There was a particular estate that she had no success with getting through. I found out that Labake lives there. I told her that my Mum hasn’t been able to get past the estate gates, and she said leave it with me, give her my number. When next she comes, she should call me and tell the security guards that she is going to my house. She dares the security guard that won’t let her pass. She also offered to help my mother share flyers. She has never met my mum before. I tell you, my mother was super impressed when they met, and my mum is not the easiest person in the world to impress. I have been looking for ways to pay her back and suddenly it occurred to me to do a featured post on her business to give it more exposure. Labake, this is for you. In my own little way, with this post, I am saying a big thank you on behalf of myself and my mum. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you very much. Here’s to many long years of having each other’s back and a long and prosperous friendship. I truly appreciate you.
This is Introducing Fontaine de Vie. A company based in Lagos, that specialises in Virgin Cocktails, homemade natural fruit juices and smoothies. They cater to all your Corporate and Social Events including family needs. Whatever the order, they will fulfil. Labake’s company does some very interesting Mocktails. She has also kindly agreed to share a recipe for this post. She has lots of other recipes of on her Fontaine de Vie Facebook Page. Please click on this link and Like the Page
Here are a few words from the company. “Virgin Cocktails are what we do best at Fontaine De Vie. We cater to all your Corporate and Social needs. We delight in offering our clients the best, we never compromise on quality and our variety of skilfully blended virgin (non-alcoholic) cocktails, homemade natural fruit juices and smoothies, are a testament to our professionalism”. Don’t forget to Like Fontaine de Vie on Facebook because she regularly updates it with fun recipes to try for yourself at home. I would leave the pictures to speak for themselves.
If you are thinking okay, I don’t have a party to plan at the moment, well Fontaine de Vie has still got you covered. They also do home orders. Now imagine all these healthy juices in your fridge, and you didn’t have to lift a finger to make them. Call Fontaine de Vie on 08034230720 OR 08076982644 and they will hook you up. No excuses now, not to get your daily fruit intake.
………here’s the recipe Labake agreed to share.
Recipe from Fontaine de Vie – Canary Melon Punch
1 medium Canary Melon
1 small green apple
1 large ginger
1 small cucumber
50ml Orgeat Syrup
You can find Canary melon in Lagos. It is popularly called Sweet Melon or Yellow Melon by Vendors. You may have seen the “aboki’s” carting it all over town in wheel barrows.
1. Juice melon, apple and lemon and mix together.
2. Peel and purée ginger and boil with 25cl of water.
3. Allow to cool completely, seive and pour ginger juice into the rest juice.
4. Peel and chop cucumber, some more honeydew melon and apple into a jar and pour juice over it.
5. Add Orgeat syrup, stir and pop into the fridge.
Serve very chilled……..as you can see, that jug is sweating.
Labake is probably going to kick me for saying all this, but you know what, for people, who have shocked you to your marrows with goodness in private, you have to thank and appreciate them in public. You really just have to, especially when you have a platform like this to do so. I believe strongly in the power that lies behind the act of gratitude. To anyone reading this, no high horsey motivation to write all I have written at all. I was just led strongly to write this after reading Wana’s post on Bella Naija.
I would like you to ask yourself, when was the last time you did something nice for a friend that has been good to you. Please reflect on that. If you are the I can’t stress myself for anyone kind of person, keep at it. Karma is a bitch, your day will come. It is not enough to just pray to The Lord for mercy and blessings. The one’s around you, have you blessed them with gifts of yourself, your time, and even your money when needed?
If you would also easily throw a friend under the bus to either get ahead, or because of so called rules or standards, or you are the type that owes no obligation to anyone but yourself, can’t be arsed to show support for friends, type of person. Not sure if the word vile is apt to describe you, but I am sure that it is pretty close. Do your friends a favour and let them know this is how you are, so they know not to expect much from you, so they won’t be disappointed. You may prevail for a time, you may not be bothered by it, but you know what, the day will come when you will need them to pull you out from under the bus someone else threw you under, and there will be no outstretched hands. The law of sowing and reaping, is ever sure and ever true.
With this post, I am gladly announcing to the world, this babe is my friend. You mess with her, you have me to deal with. Hehehehehehehehehe, Seriously. Lol