Connect with us


Oghogho Osayimwen: The Tale of a Lagos Babe In Abuja



Welcome to Abuja, the air, atmosphere and massive rocks said to me, a full-blooded Eko babe. Who wouldn’t mind an adventure with new memories, new friends?

I recently accepted a grand offer in the city of Abuja. Although I struggled with the decision to relocate, at that time of my life I really didn’t have a choice.

As they say: life happens!

As a Lagos babe, I popped into town with a cute little red (favourite colour) bag. I packed with a fragile heart and entered a land I heard so much of, leaving behind all I ever knew and loved despite its craziness- Lagos. I still miss it daily.

My only ever experience of Abuja was about a decade ago when I went hunting for my NYSC certificate. Since then, nothing.

My life started in Abuja; I made some good friends. While conversing with one of them, she said, “Don’t you just love the FCT? I mean, you are looking fresher and you just mentioned you only journey about 12 minutes to work. Where would you get that in Lagos?”

It looked to me like she had stuck her tongue at me. Like she had said, Babe, chill. Make I hear word small for this your Lagos is this, that, lit, that. Enjoy FCT already. You are in it.

It had been about 90 days since I arrived in Abuja and I still hadn’t let my guard down. I compared every single element and detail to Lagos. On one of those special comparing occasions, I was accompanied by this same friend to a popular store in the Central Business District, very close to the CBN, for some grocery shopping. On getting to the pay point area, I had to mentally count to one hundred so I wouldn’t lose it. The cashiers at the pay points, asides exhibiting a terrible attitude, just generally lacked the zeal to work. The Lagos babe in me nagged to my friend, who by the time was tired of my Lagos girl rants. I complained, “Time is very expensive for me, don’t these guys know I don’t have the time? I just feel like sitting on someone’s head.” The holy-spirit had to minister to me to find some bit of patience and a chill pill.

In Lagos, guys are sharp, smart and eager to record your purchases from any position on the queue if possible. But in Abuja, they struggle with assisting/directing customers on the queue. In fact, slow and steady wins the race. Slow for days would be the kicker word.

Nevertheless, as time travelled, I endeavoured to make some adjustments mentally in order to enjoy the city of Abuja. I have since then found that a majority of its people or residents have been nice, even though I haven’t gotten used to their slow pace. Sometimes it really makes me want to scream out loud. I am a fast paced being and from a fast-paced city; yes, my origin (as they say on flight schedules) is Lagos.

As much as I love and appreciate some measure of peace and sanity almighty Abuja has to offer, I will not fail to embrace or climb at a dose of Lagos to get a balanced sanity. Who wouldn’t?

And yes, Abuja has helped God answer my prayers on traffic and scary danfos. Eko traffic was sickening, even though I enjoyed it by reading a book, engaging in free chatting or doing gbeborun. But Abuja has taken from me the habit of reading in traffic; before you say jack, I’m at my destination.

A colleague encouraged me, advised me to sieve the gains of the city and not the excesses. Now let’s take a look at the gains of a peaceful environment: less stress, access to good fruits and veggies, less noise, too, and more sanity. Right? Did I enjoy all these in Lagos? She believes that with these, I’ll add extra years to my age.

In hindsight, I am thankful for a space to grow and re-invent myself. These memories have been high and low but they’ve been worth much more.

Photo Credit: Dreamstime

Oghogho Osayimwen is a writer and corporate communications expert in Abuja Nigeria. She prides herself in relating life experiences in words to help others live and travel through life unshaken. She loves adventure and helping people build their personal brands. [email protected]


  1. Chinma Eke

    July 31, 2018 at 5:14 pm

    I recently spent a week in Abuja, and though a born Lagos girl, I can’t help but miss it. Serene, no traffic, no pressures- which sadly translates to people not being on their toes too. That I found frustrating while in Abuja, I can totally relate to your experience in the supermarket- a lot of times I was like; what are these people doing?
    And yes, you forgot to add: Abuja peeps can’t drive! They should come and try that nonesense they do in Abuja in Lag……

    • T.M.

      August 1, 2018 at 5:17 am

      And Abuja drivers do NOT know/follow traffic rules and regulations. Unfortunately FRSC is like a toothless bull dog over there and there’s no equivalent of LASTMA.

      Of course, I’m writing this from Lagos.

  2. Amarachi

    August 1, 2018 at 10:00 am

    This, i relate so well with. I moved to Port Harcourt about 3 and half years ago, and just like you, i was not impressed and compared every thing to lagos. But as time went by, I was sincere to myself ….. I loved the serenity, the no traffic, the getting to work under 15 minutes (compared to my 2-3 hours in lagos). But sadly, that is all i love about the city. Every other thing makes me still dream about lagos. The food, the accessibility to everything and availability of everything.. Lagos is the land of hustlers. And i feel safer in Lagos. Here you are scared and skeptic about being kidnapped.

  3. Vics

    August 1, 2018 at 2:04 pm

    Hahaha, our girl is back! This time with an Abj Chronicle. No mind Abuja people, na too much enjoyment dey worry them. But Lagos wahala too much sha, who no like beta athing. Like your friend said, enjoy the ride!

  4. Onyi

    August 1, 2018 at 10:43 pm

    I have been living in Abuja since 2012. I moved here from Lagos. I still miss Lagos everyday. The availability and ease of accessing everything plus there is something about Lagos that makes everyday interesting. I hate Abuja’s slow pace and laxity. Oh my Lagos.

  5. Aidyl

    August 2, 2018 at 9:56 am

    I will take Abuja over Lagos any day. Lagos has the fun spots and events. it is also an hour by flight right? I can escape the so called boring Abuja for the alive and fun city of Lagos whenever I need to however to reside in Lagos is not recommended at all. So much stress and wahala in Lagos.

  6. ejayz

    August 3, 2018 at 2:33 am

    Very nice write up by my dear friend.I haven’t lived in Abuja though, but where i am currently based,can be compared to the serenity i hear Abuja has.
    I have been out of Lagos in total of 5 years and girl! i miss that place.
    With the hustling,traffic,noise and all,it is still a place to be.
    like i told you,to relocate de hungry me cos the hustling spirit i have today was instilled in LAGOS.

  7. Peaches

    August 4, 2018 at 1:26 pm

    Lovely write up dear…..I can totally relate?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Tangerine Africa

Star Features