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Bunmi Ajakaiye: ‘Exclusive Event’ Means Nothing To Lagosians



2014 was one heck of a year and I have to say that Lagos for me has been a cauldron of excitement, ridiculousness and late nights – stirred together by the “Lagos life” lessons I keep learning. December was been filled with so many moments and I quickly figured something out; “EXCLUSIVE EVENT” MEANS NOTHING TO LAGOSIANS.

I am so confused, all this time I thought that if an event was an exclusive affair, then there should be at least enough room for me to be able to turn around without totally invading the space of the nearest unsuspecting socialite! Such was the case at more than one event I attended. As a media person, you attend some events on account of what you are there to do; but there was this one that I was sure was going to be a hassle, so I made sure I had the organiser’s number on speed dial.

As I suspected, the security guy was being overzealous so I pulled rank, got in and guess what I found? Absolutely nothing!  It was just a handful of people, this was almost 11pm and you could literally imagine the tumble weed blowing across the room with reckless abandon. Bottles and bottles of champagne were already waiting to be served and yet there was nobody.

I set my gear down and resigned myself to a boring night. I will confess that a small part of me was busy judging the organisers for over using the term ‘exclusive’ to the point where nobody showed up. But me and my judgy self were unceremoniously flung to a corner as exactly 30 minutes later, the room was totally packed, and the mammoth crowd still waiting to get in was unbelievable and they were all determined to get in! All that idle champagne was gone and had been replaced just as quickly! It was like someone had been holding all the people up, maybe two streets away and then let them go all at the same time. I have to admit I was overwhelmed, and trust my Lagos people, whenever the event is tagged as exclusive event; their level of fronting for the camera is not here. It was a great night but I had to leave early because I kept falling alseep; I was already tired from the night before where a music show ended up turning into a night vigil! December events in Lagos will literally throw your body clock out of whack if you don’t watch it.
This brings me to the next thing I figured out, YOU WILL GO HOME…EVENTUALLY.

I don’t know about everyone else but since when has it become a norm to leave home at the modest hour of 10:30pm for an event that starts at 9pm only to return to your house at nearly 6am! Don’t get me wrong, some of our events end at the latest by 1am, which is not too bad because if I have to write about it, I need at least an hour to coordinate, so by 2am I’m snoozing. However, me and my puny 1am routine could have gone to blazes for all the organisers of this event cared. After arriving late and trying to have a good time, I realised by 4am that the show was still nowhere near the end! They were saving the best acts for last and because I was already there, I had to endure. I looked around and found people dozing off, kids sleeping on their parents’ laps and it was just a bit unsettling. Is this really a worthy price to pay for a few laughs and people gyrating enthusiastically on a stage? I was even more annoyed with myself because I stick to fashion related events; but this one time, my friends had me cornered.

Today, as I was grumbling to myself about what a whirlwind these past few weeks have been, I remembered one thing; I made it through the year! I actually survived this town! It’s not always been smooth sailing but I am thankful for grace and most of all safety because I do get home at some precarious hours and our neighbours are totally convinced that I am a runz girl (I can see it in their eyes!). But…have all the late nights, countless images, unsavoury moments and judgy neighbours been worth it? You bet!

Photo Credit: Dreamstime | Michael Zhang

My name is Bunmi and I am a photographer and writer in this crazy, ridiculous and absolutely exhilarating city of Lagos! I feel like I am on a wild rollercoaster ride as I keep learning new things and seeing some “American wonder” type stuff along the way. Your girl is a learner! Read more at:


  1. Window

    January 6, 2015 at 12:30 pm

    This had me in stitches. Lagos night life is the absolute best!

  2. Adaeze Writes

    January 6, 2015 at 2:41 pm

    LMAO @ our neighbours are totally convinced that I am a runz girl (I can see it in their eyes!)
    You’re really funny Bunmi

  3. NaijaPikin

    January 6, 2015 at 3:04 pm

    It’s like everything is overdone in Dec thanks to the IJGB crew who want to spend the dollars and pounds, and the naija crew who will gladly drop mad Naira to not carry last.

    I remember when Tiwaworks started ABE. I wondered who would pay to get into a club in Lagos, Thats was like 6 or 7 years ago. And now the event is here to stay.

    Lagos life keep flexing oh. una well done.

  4. D

    January 6, 2015 at 3:46 pm

    @ children dozing off on their parents laps. I have always wondered why do parents bring children to some events. Why??? I would rather stay at home with my child/ren than have them at such events. However, to the author…way to go and wishing you more success this year as you try to navigate through the ups and downs of lagos life.

    • Candid Opinion

      January 8, 2015 at 4:40 pm

      Just to add to that” D” if they must attend an event at least they could get a child minder to mind the kids at home.

  5. David Nwachukwu

    January 6, 2015 at 6:01 pm

    Bunmi you’re the funniest!

  6. Sisi

    January 6, 2015 at 11:04 pm

    Lol! You got to love Lagos but mehn it scares the s*it out of me when I think of returning home as I’ve never worked in Naija before, sweet Lawd

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