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CONNECTING THE DOTS: MY 2014 REVIEW

“You have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.” – Jobs.

A lot happens in a year. Or two – as my 2014 actually started in 2013 when I spent the most part far away in Eastern Nigeria in service to the Fatherland. When that call up letter came in November of 2012, all hope that I could finally escape from what had turned out to be a most depressing year for me faded fast (I’d been waiting all year to get mobilised). It said Ebonyi on the letter and Google Maps didn’t do any help for my despair that night. I blamed myself for allowing the hand of fate instead of heeding to suggestions to work it. Fate was cruel.

You know that myth about camp experience being like a 3 week trip to Vegas, right? That’s exactly what it is – a myth. (Sure enough, it affords you the opportunity to validate the myth, but I think nostalgia embellishes memories and, by the time many head out of camp, their minds automatically block out most of the hellish experiences.) People did whatever it took to help them cope, and there was the ever present apprehension gnawing away in my mind regarding what PPAs one would get in a place like that.

I joined OBS (Orientation Broadcasting Corporation) by the first weekend and that reined my mind in somewhat. I knew the state had almost nothing to offer me in terms of engineering and media was a ready escape. Joining the group turned out to be pivotal to the entire year as it decided where I was going to be posted to for the scheme – the state’s broadcasting corporation. Of course, I was always confronted with question of whether a broadcasting corporation was the right fit for an engineering graduate. It turned out to be the best of all available options for me in the state. I applied myself, expanded my skill set and got to play Radio/TV host for an entire year.

January 2014: Rest is Oblivion.

I was spent. I’d been back for 2months and, as the highs of the holidays wore off, restlessness set in. I wasn’t ready for the New Year, so to speak. I had no resolutions or any of such things planned out. I’d been too busy since I got back that I hadn’t taken the time to rest and try to plan ahead what my next adventure would be. Of course, I’d sent in a few applications in the meantime but I wasn’t quite sure I was ready to do anything yet. I wanted to rest. But I also wanted to not be broke as my savings were depleting fast. I felt lost.

I got a call by the last week in January by a friend of mine who served with me in the same broadcasting corporation the previous year. He’d managed to secure a deal with Garden City Radio in Port Harcourt. He asked if I’d like to come and Co anchor two new shows on radio with him. I said yes and on February 4, I left home for Port Harcourt. Two days later, a meeting was set up with the GM and we were given the nod. The two shows would run weekly – the live one on Saturday afternoons and the recorded one on Wednesdays.

March: Second guessing

A few weeks in and the thought that I’d left home on a whim to come and work  a job without pay in an expensive city started to eat away at me like a splinter in my mind. (My basic needs were met by my cousin who I was living with and that helped overcome the urge to pack my bags and get on a bus back to Benin.) Our shows got more solid soon enough and started to turn a profit by the end of March.

By mid March, I finally attained closure on a “relationship” that had long spiralled into a one-sided attraction. As time [and space] and chance weighed in, we’d drifted apart and, when I ended the call that evening, I set myself free. I wasn’t too distraught then because my razbliuto was already in bloom.

By the end of the month, I interviewed at a firm I’d applied to earlier that month. Two interview stages later, I got hired on April 1 and I resumed May 2 as a trainee Engineer (Lol, in your face, all those of you who thought I was letting my engineering degree go to waste). I still did the radio show on weekends with my friend and partner, and we recorded the other one on Tuesday evenings after I got back from work. Safe to say my schedules where packed.

November: Bittersweet

November was a weird month for me in the sense that I had my highest and lowest moments crammed into that one month. I took a week off work and attended a conference in Lagos at the beginning of the month and, since some of my closest friends were around, I had a great time unwinding. Also, I went home to see my folks before heading back to base. And I secured a paid writing deal with a prominent site that weekend and will commence that soon enough.

I saw a tout in get shot and killed in a drive by shooting close to my office the week I returned to work. From then on, I kept on meeting people who’d either lost someone close to them or had seen someone die. I was greatly disturbed by the déjà vu feeling their stories evoked. I struggled with existential thoughts on mortality for the rest of the month.

December: Last words

This year has been full. I’ve learned, laughed, cried and I’m growing. I’m too busy for my own good sometimes and I’m barely able to keep in touch with lots of people as often as I’d like. I keep saying this being an adult thing is overrated as work is all one really does now – and church, which, among other things, mainly acts as a balm for my raging mind.

Everyone keeps bugging me if I’ll ever have the time for love or ever allow myself to fall in love and/or be loved. Well, I met someone in August who made me consider unshackling my heart again. The more I get to know her, the more I think she just might be the one to finally save me. Fate, as it is wont to do when I decide to take a chance on someone, has thrown us in different cities temporarily. Hopefully, I don’t screw it up

Looking back now, I’m grateful for the year I’ve had. I currently juggle two careers even though I suppose I shall have to let one suffer eventually. God has blessed me with people who paved the way for me all year. They make my story beautiful.

Not all my dreams/efforts have panned out though. I gave coding a shot this year and I’ve stopped and picked it up now and again. I’m still not good at it yet nor have I had the good sense to quit. Also, my friend and I are building a tech company around a product we designed and built which we hope will revolutionise the power and water industries in Nigeria should it go mainstream. We’re still far from where we want to be with it as going mainstream is not exactly like riding a bike. I still can’t afford to move to my own apartment just yet, but my trainee Engineer phase is ending already and hopefully I can fix that up at the turn of the New Year.

As 2014 grinds away, I’m overwhelmed with gratitude for the experiences I’ve had and a hunger for more. Even as I look at all the many things I haven’t achieved yet and as next year looms closer, I keep hoping that all the dots will somehow connect eventually.

– Solomon Osadolo

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I enjoyed reading this. Really felt like looking at the big picture. I think you should think about writing memoirs. You seem to connect the dots very easily. Thanks for sharing King Solo!

Today is the day of the newbies on the review series. This evening we will have Yuyus on here with her review. Sometime about midnight, a surprise catch up post will also go up. Don’t miss any of these. Go ahead and subscribe if you haven’t already. Don’t be shy to share these stories and comment either. See y’all later 🙂

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