Saturday, February 20, 2016

#10 Nigeria: Lekki Beach

Most Friday evenings, a group goes down to the beach and runs or walks a 5k. We went on our first Friday here, and again last night, but we rode the bus the whole way and walked around on the beach while we waited for everyone else. The compound is probably only about a mile from the Atlantic Ocean, and we live on a peninsula. The beach itself was very dirty with trash and small, heartbreaking shacks everywhere (not sure if people live in them or use them to sell things out of). People don't swim in the water - partly because of the strong tide, partly because it's dirty (three times in the past 6 months, including last night, the group has actually seen dead bodies washed up on the beach!!!!! ahh!), and partly because apparently Nigerians don't know how to swim. But Sophia still had an awesome time chasing sand crabs, and yesterday she had me bring trash bags so she could clean up the beach (which is a nice idea in theory, but I really shouldn't have let her do it - for the germ factor. Grace was really into it, too...picking up cigarette butts and other super nasty things because she wants to be just like her big sis).

Near where we "make camp", so to speak, there's a boat washed up on the beach. It's pretty awesome. Apparently it showed up there this past September and it has been rusted and striped for parts since then. The likely story is that it was being used for something illegal so once the authorities were onto them, they ditched the boat (apparently this is not completely uncommon). So, since Sophia likes to go to the beach and look for pirate ships, this boat - in a way - could fit the description. Unfortunately, there are real pirates in this area, and there's nothing lighthearted about it. In fact, a neighbor told us that just a few weeks ago, one of the Chevron oil rigs here noticed an unidentified boat on their radar, so they lost a day of production by sealing up their oil wells and....a lot of other technical things I probably wouldn't tell correctly. Basically, it costs the company money to not produce any oil for a day, but it's worth it to be safe in case that boat turned out to be pirates.
So far, this is my favorite picture to say: "hey! We live in Nigeria!"

 Sophia is trying to make a hole for the crabs to go into...

Sun setting over the Atlantic Ocean. No matter where you are in the world, there's something really pretty and peaceful about a sunset at the beach. 

 More crab searching

Suya - a Nigerian classic. In this case, it was cooked on a beach and served on a newspaper. Classy. It is super spicy, reminded me of softer beef jerky, and was totally mystery meat (we suspect goat...). 

Suya was followed by a bonfire and smores right on the beach. Sophia especially loved it!

1 comment:

Steven and Brittany said...

Dead bodies on the beach!! Ew!!!
We miss you guys so much! Love reading your blog!!