Last year I said I wanted to resume my travel adventures in 2018, but that didn’t happen. I went to Toronto in June and had a good time, but that was it. Well I did pass through Mali and Abidjan on the way back because Air France cancelled the flight to Lagos and gave us the option of going the next day or rerouting through another country, and we chose the latter because the Yotel at CDG was closed for repairs. So that doesn’t count as a visit, but we stopped in Abidjan long enough to see that they have better manners and are more organized than their Nigerian counterparts.
Having visited European countries before now, I think that what Canada lacks in authentic cultural history, it makes up for in sheer volume. What that means is whereas it would take me on average, 2 hours to go through a museum in a European city, in Toronto it would have taken ~6 hours [I only spent 2 because that’s how much time I budgeted]. And by ‘authentic cultural history’ I mean… in Europe you could see castles, art history artefacts, etc for a particular city dating back to the 15th century, but for obvious reasons there’s nothing that goes that far back in all the places we visited in Toronto, so they just pack in a lot of stuff from places around the world, not just Canada. Same with the zoo, it took us the whole day to get around to all the exhibitions.
Earlier in the year, I had started to think I don’t want to do UX Design anymore. I’ve tried it on, it’s a skill that will hopefully never leave me, but career-wise, I’ve taken it as far as I want to for now. After Canada, I did some introspection and decided if I was going to work there in the future, I’d need a little more experience in something else: Product Management. This is what I wanted to do before I got into UX Design, but with my background, I don’t believe it would have been a smooth transition if I didn’t do UX first. Anyway, one has gotten a lot more familiar with the tech space since then, so I thought it was time to try again. I applied to 2 great companies, got into the better one :D, then packed my bags and moved to Lagos.
In moving to and settling in Lagos, the money we’ve spent in the past 2 months has me REELING, and we’re not even done yet. Please make it stop. I don’t even like my house [because I keep comparing the building and landscaping to where we used to live in PH] but it was the best of all the options we saw in the period we were looking so hey. Wish we could sublet and not have to live there.
Work is fine, as it usually is in the beginning. It’s challenging and stretching me, and there’s room for growth, so I’m quite happy with it. I’ve been fortunate to almost always work with smart, good people, and this place is no exception, thank goodness. My temporary flat is on Admiralty Way, a 5 minute walk from Beer Barn and other lovely places to eat and get merry, and a 5 minute drive from work + there’s never traffic on my current route, so I’m thankful. I earn enough on a regular basis to maintain my current standard of living, thank God for that – we still need a bit more money to attain the standards I have in my head though lol. I learned this year that I’m quite tired of trying to think about what to do for a 2nd stream of income – not because I don’t want extra money, but because very few things in my life have come to me by striving. The things I struggled and jumped through hoops for pretty much never materialized, but the ones that came through were basically as a result of me being present and indicating interest – nothing more.
I read a lot more this year than last, because I became acquainted with a library in Port Harcourt. Going to the library became my self care practice, and my morning routine became as follows: wake up > eat fruits > drink vanilla tea + read 1 chapter of a fiction book + 1 chapter of a non-fiction book > begin the day properly. It was nice, and I miss it.
Not sure what I specifically want for the new year, except that I want to be proud of myself. I’m proud of how well I managed and maintained my mental and physical health in 2018, and I’d like to continue doing more of that in 2019. I also want to be excellent at work, and nurture good relationships in a way that feels authentic/realistic for me. Something else I want to try doing is setting monthly achievable goals, and writing down good things that happen each week so I can keep track.
Thank you for reading this and for being in my life, and cheers to 2019!