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Our trip to Nigeria

February 25, 2010

It has been a while since I’ve last blogged. We had a crazy time before moving to Nigeria. This is going to be a long post. I will start with our flights to Nigeria, what a nightmare that was.
We struggled to get our visas since December. Eventually our agent got an appointment with the Nigerian ambassador. After the appointment we had our visas. There was also another guy going with us to also work where J works. So, we got the visas on 9 January and then our flights got booked for 11 January. What a crazy 2 days I had, planning last stuff, getting all the last stuff etc.
On 11 January, Thursday we went to OR Tambo Airport very early the morning, we met the agent and the “Engineer”, the guy who is going with us. We booked in the suitcases and went for coffee, we said goodbye to parents and went through to the duty free side and sat down at the gate, waiting to board. Got on plane just after 11:00, the flight itself went rather well, taking in consideration that it is my first flight and I had 3 kids with me, who also flew for the first time. It was a 5 hour flight. The plan was that J will meet us at Lagos airport and then we will fly together to Abuja airport. Got off the plane, went through all the people smoothly, when they ask for passports and I gave them 4, they just let me through without looking inside. Got outside Lagos airport, it is hot, very hot and the humidity is very high. I didn’t have contact with J, phone doesn’t work in Nigeria, so we waited for him. The kids were tired and hot, I was tired, hot and frustrated. After waiting for about half an hour, a lady came up to us and had a piece of paper with my name on it, she works at the domestic airport and J knows her, so he phoned her to come and fetch us, there was problems and he was to late at Abuja airport to get a flight to Lagos. He phoned her and told her that she must go and fetch his wife, kids and the other guy at the international airport, she just have to look out for a lady with purple, pink hair.
We all got into a taxi then to go to the domestic airport. What a ride we had, the people here drives like crazy. You just pray to get safe to your destination. So we arrived at the domestic airport, went to the desk, gave tickets, then they told us that our tickets wasn’t booked to go to Abuja, that is where the nightmare got worst, they then had to book us flights to Abuja and J had to pay the tickets at Abuja, he was at the airport, waiting for us there. Then they took there time to do that and then we missed the last plane flying to Abuja. So there we sat at the airport, with 3 hungry, thirsty, tired kids. I had 1 bottle of water with me, one packet of Cheddar cookies and that was it. No money, no cellphone, nothing. I just sat there and cried, I couldn’t do anything else. I was actually considering going back to the international airport and fly back to SA. J phoned Blessings, the lady who helped us and believe me, she was a real blessing, J asked her to go and book us in at a hotel and he will then come through to Lagos in the morning and settle everything. Got in taxi again, prayed all the way for our safety until we arrived at hotel. All I will say about the hotel is that it was clean, I didn’t took any photos in hotel, I just didn’t thought about taking photos during the whole trip. We were so tired and I was so gatvol, that we just climbed into the bed and slept. Me and all 3 girls on one queen size bed. In the morning we waited for J, he only arrived after 11:00. He settled all the bills. We then went to the airport again. Booked tickets to Abuja and waited, Christie had a nasty cough, she had much phlegm on her chest and she threw up while we waited. When we heard them calling a flight to Abuja, J went to find out which flight it was, it was a cargo flight, but then they told him that our flight already left 5min ago, they didn’t call the flight number. I was just so gatvol by then. J went to change the tickets, it took forever to do that. Then we waited again, at the door this time, so we wont miss the flight again. J got us some cooldrink and something like croissants to eat. It was after 17:00 when we eventually got on the plane to Abuja. When to plane started to move Christie threw up again, luckily J was holding her, don’t think I would’ve been able to handle that too. She did threw up again sometime during the flight, but luckily J had a bag ready. Before I lost my marbles totally we landed, it was just an hour flight. J’s driver was waiting for us, so we immediately got into the car with aircon and I just gave a sigh of relief. It wasn’t totally over yet, we still had to get our suitcases which was on the plane that we missed, it was just at another terminal, but J and the “Engineer” went to get them. Finally we were on our way to the farm. All 3 kids fell asleep in the car.
We really had a terrible trip to get here. But we are finally together as a family and that makes up for it.
I will put some photos up in time, the internet connection here is just terrible and I must do it in J’s office and there is no aircon there. I will also make another post of how it is to live here.

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