Inesse: I can’t believe you are checking out. Just like that!
Lewa: We now have an excuse for flying halfway around the world just to have a party.
Alex: I know. Be prepared for better cocktails, canapés, and customer service
Inesse: Please could we make today an exception? No complaints about erratic power supply, corrupt government officials, and exasperating customer service representatives.
Lewa: Way to go, Nez. You just did precisely what you were trying to avoid. I get it though. Tonight is about Alex.
Alex: I’m sure you all would be leaving soon. Nigeria is not the same as when we left it and it is too tough for us, returnees to reintegrate into the system.
Kizwe: No one leaves a place and meets it unchanged. Even if the impossible happens and it does remain unchanged, the individual has been changed and cannot return to the former place.
Inesse: O-kay, Kizwe. We hear you loud and clear.
Lewa: Oh boy. Where do you come up with this craze talk?
Inesse: Something tells me this has to do with your latest literary infatuation.
Kizwe: If you are referring to the book, “The Interpreters” by Wole Soyinka, I think it is an excellent resource for every returnee and provides the dire needed perspective for re-familiarizing oneself with our developing homeland and the ghosts we left behind.
Alex: I think it’s time to talk about something more fun.
Inesse: Like trending topics in the blogosphere or Nigerian twitter?
Lewa: Do you still keep up with those blogs? I think they gave me the Naija dose I missed while away, but since I’ve been back, I just don’t see the point.
Alex: Just like I don’t see the point of Nez’s unkempt hair.
Inesse: I am Team Natural. Naturalista Sista. Returning to the Roots and more. My hair is not unkempt oh.
Lewa: It just looks due. Maybe going natural is not good for your hair texture.
Inesse: The way you guys are talking, one would think you have never left the shores of Nigeria. These are twisties and they were deliberately made with a rough edge to it. Kizwe, please help me out here.
Kizwe: Nez finds herself in good company with confident women such as Chimamanda Adichie, being liberated from Western ideals and unrealistic expectations that are tantamount to exorbitant expenditure and extravagant lifestyles.
Alex: I take what I said back about you all would be leaving soon. Kizwe would remain as he seems to be the expert in twisted-ism, the language that Nigeria speaks. Why did you even move back to Naij, Kiz?
Lewa: Oh oh. You may have ruffled a few feathers there, Alex, but I’ll tell you why I moved back. To take over the house my father built in Surulere.
Alex: Dude, isn’t that in the Mainland? You live on the Island.
Lewa: That’s why I am on ground. I need to renovate and sell the property, but first, I have to chase out the tenants. They owe rent and are still claiming ownership on top of my inheritance. -Anyway, I have my guy, Prince and some police friends who are working on their evictions.
Kizwe: Force has never been the answer. Dialogue and reconciliation have proven to be more effective.
Alex: Someone has found his voice.
Inesse: I like that our oddities bring us together. We are like peanut brittle, nuts struggling to stay together in search for the sugar.
Lewa: Fantasies such as imagining your group of friends as peanut brittle led you back to Nigeria, Nez.
Inesse: No. That’s not true. It is more like those inspiring “Move Back to Nigeria” stories, I kept reading on Bellanaija. I don’t know, I just felt like I had to come back and make a difference too.
Alex: That is the exact sort of fantasy thinking Lewa is referring to.
Inesse: Give me a break guys. Not all of us can be like you Alex. Some of us are still waiting for our Australia.