Monday, 7 January 2008

2008 Greetings from WINDHOEK

View from my Room
Goche Ganas is a divine place for relaxation and after a week and with the help of some spa treatments body and soul began to restore. I had left behind the madness and chaos of 15million people in Lagos for the quiet slow pace of Windhoek with its approximately 250,000 population most of whom had also gone out of town for the holidays. Actually GG is about 30km outside of Windhoek on top of some hill. The views are magnificient and it was my first time really being in touch with NATURE, the perfect context to get in tune with one’s true, humane self. As the New Year approached one of the many thoughts that went through my mind was the way in which religion was practised in Nigeria. By the middle of December, the streets of Lagos was inundated with huge billboards and posters with Pastors that are larger than life announcing the dates of vigils, crusades and week-long spiritual retreats. The newspapers, radio and television stations were awash with Christian activity adverts. It was obvious that this is the biggest money making period in the Nigerian Christian calendar and the different new age or new generation (in local parlance) churches were battling it out for supremacy in a manner that would make the rivalry between Coke and Pepsi seem like child’s play.

Sunset at Goche Ganas, Windhoek

New Year's Eve in Windhoek.
During the Holy Week the nation is at a standstill (remember we have been voted the most religious country) and non stop praying and other Christian rituals become the order of the day and everyone feels happy having absolved themselves of their various misdeeds during the year on an individual and on a collective level. The question that kept going through my mind in Namibia was to what extent do Nigerian really know and appreciate God with such a disconnect from Nature. In Nature we really experience God’s bounty and his blessing. During my stay from the balcony of my room I marvelled at the way in which the giraffes played, the speed at which they ran, the rhinoceros walking with their young ones, the zebras snoozing under the trees and the way the different beautiful birds flew in the air. As they flew – dipping and diving – the idea of freedom kept coming to mind. As I came out of my room the butterflies fluttering around – about 20 sometimes 50 – was a sight to behold however I wasn’t too pleased with the hordes of moths that invaded my room at night but it was a small price to pay. But the most breaktaking was the sun setting. This usually lasted for about 90mins and as the sun goes down the colours of the sky is incredible – it goes from blue to red to yellow to orange, the colours blending and separating resulting in a painting I have never seen before right before my eyes. This really is God’s masterpiece. Nature is the ultimate work of art. More Nigerians need to experience it.

I wish you all God’s bountiful blessing in this New Year.


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