Life is like a school, so is Lagos, a school where we are allowed to learn everything by experiencing them, a Montessori!
…this is for Daniella Godwin Effiong and that beauty-full 2017… 2017 being one year I spent almost entirely in the heartbeat of Africa: Lagos!
Whatever the strangeness of Lagos inspires, its busyness takes away. For me, the city is a place where artistic thoughts keep cooking up in one’s mind and evaporates because there is no time to put them down, except of course arts is your occupation.
The truth is, in Lagos, every second is a story, every minute is a painting, every day is a sculpture.
The ugly thing about my arts affinity is, if there is no avenue to express it, it tortures my mind a bit before evaporating. I suffered this in Lagos until Daniella…
Now, we are so used to our lives being modelled after our failing school system, a system where everything is based on grades and exams, where those who cram thrive and ideas die. Life is really a Montessori, so should learning.
At work, for two weeks, two JSS3 students from CMS Grammar School came as interns. They were Mechanical Engineer wannabes. This internship for all JSS3 students in the school is a part of career guidance aimed at wiping off the dreams of parents and peers and making them see careers for what they should be: their own.
I do not know what Daniella will be in future, but when I saw the speed at which she draws, the details, the imagination, and even the accompanying verbal stories, I was wowed. I was happy that her parents did not stop her, or tag it is a distraction from schoolwork.
I call her “my Arts Teacher”. It is Summer Break now, and she reminds me of our drawing class every day we meet. In those classes, I sit, watching her draw, scribble and colour.
Whatever inspiration in the Arts that I may finally have in this city, I will credit Daniella with some percentage.
Life is a Montessori, we should not cage our lives following stringent paths of career, jobs or living…as if all we do will be graded. Life is Arts, Arts is Expression, expression is not caged in a small space!
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