Sunday, 16 June 2019


When I started driving, I had three guiding principles –
1.      Top up my fuel at half tank
2.      Always buy full tank when I drive into a fueling station
3.      When broke, buy fuel - at least I can still move around.

Topping up my car at half tank made it easy to mentally calculate the true value of the fuel I bought😁 (Yeah, I sometimes use excel but I have to know at the pump)

One day on my way out, I decided to top up my fuel which was a little above half tank but something weird happened. The cost was over my usual spend and my tank was far from full. I told the station attendant to stop when it was a 1,000 above my average spend then challenged him. “Madam your gauge might be bad o, “he said. While driving out, I told him he just lost a customer.

I wasn’t paying any attention to the fuel meter because I was trying to get out the keg I use to fuel my generator. “Your money is 5,000 she said, this one is 1,500 and the one I sold into the car is 3500” The station attendant said. But why did you clear off the previous one before showing me?” I questioned. As we were going back and forth, my colleague emerged from the car and said, "no, I saw everything, you sold 2,650 into the car". Then the station attendant began to stammer. While giving her 5,000 I told her she just lost a customer. Trust my colleague to collect my change on my behalf.

I started defaulting on my first guiding principle because I had to buy fuel from a tested and trusted fueling station

Over the years, I have marked a couple of fueling stations never to return to because of dubious transactions. I also have my regular petrol stations.

One day, I went to one of my regular fueling stations but the bill for a full tank did not make any sense. At a similar fuel level with my previous purchases, it was about three thousand Naira above my usual spend. I kept going back to the station and switched attendants then realized it was a particular one. Without concrete evidence, I couldn’t report him, but I challenged him and told him I wasn’t going to buy from him again. It was at that point I said to myself “Maybe it is not the fueling station, maybe it is the attendant”

Last year, I decided to return to the 5,000 fueling station, it is one of my best budget decisions

Do you have an ‘Ile-Epo” story to share? We would love to hear from you.

Ile - means "house" in Yoruba

Epo - means "petrol" or "palm oil" in Yoruba

Ile-Epo is also the name of a market in Lagos state, Nigeria 

This post was edited by Dolapo Ajayi

Wednesday, 22 May 2019


Maybe he doesn’t know, but you never asked.
Maybe she doesn’t have, but you never asked. 

You assumed you know her, but her appearance is far from her struggles.
I couldn’t help but notice she wasn’t properly dressed for salaat. I tried to focus on the lecture, but I kept thinking about her. When I finally had the opportunity to speak with her, she said “I don’t like coming to the mosque because people stir at me like I have done something wrong”. I asked her why she was dressed the way she was, but her answer shocked me. “This is the only scarf I have,” she said. A year or a two before that, I had 50 scarfs, it had never crossed my mind that there are people who do not have scarfs for salat.

“Asake, she’s fasting but never joins us in congregational prayers. Today, I challenged her, but her response shocked me”, Musa said.

“I don’t have a Khimar and our uniform is a short sleeve with jeans, so I pray when I get home” She replied. The lady works in Musa’s office as an office assistant.

Asake, I greeted the ladies before proceeding to the pharmacy section of the supermarket. I asked the pharmacist for pregnancy strips then the ladies switched to their local dialect. “Imagine this small girl already sleeping around, how old is she that she allowed a man to knock her up,” one of the Ladies said. “Poor girl, I pray the test is negative, so she can plan better in future,” the second lady said. 

On my way out, I greeted them again and they smiled. I turned to them and spoke in their local language “I finished University more than 7 years ago and I have been working since then, I have been married for a while and we have been trying to conceive so I pray the test is positive.” Jade narrated.  Known for making excuse on behalf of people, Jade concluded with “I guess it is because I don’t wear a wedding band”.

Till next time, before you jump into conclusions, give the benefit of MAYBE 

This post was edited by Dolapo Ajayi

Saturday, 18 May 2019

Self encouragement

It’s been a long while. 

I have written several posts in my head but it’s a constant battle between what I think I should share on my blog and what I shouldn’t. Not much has changed between my last post and now, but a lot has changed.

I am hoping with the post, I encourage myself to write on this blog again.

Till next time, don’t give up on yourself

Monday, 2 July 2018

I failed

I couldn’t remember the last time I woke up with so much confidence.
I knew only one person who had passed it the first time.
Those who had passed recently had done it more than once.
I was determined to take and pass it the first time. I think I was fixated on passing it the first time.
I followed most of my usual routine and I was very sure it would work. The only time it had not worked was when I was emotionally stressed but this time I was emotionally neutral.

As I drove to the testing center, I mentally composed my success SMS.
Usually, I don’t review my answers once I am done with an examination, but I wanted to ensure I got way higher than 300 and that I had reviewed each and every question more than once.
As I raised up my hand to notify the test administrator of my completion, I hurriedly completed the survey so that the congratulatory message can appear. I was thinking of the appropriate time to update my LinkedIn profile when my score appeared - 297

To this day, I am super grateful that I failed that examination. It was an eye-opening experience that taught me humility and the importance of surrounding yourself with the right support system.

I toyed with the idea of rewriting the examination. I thought about picking up another goal to achieve but this was the final examination before I would become certified. It was no longer about passing the exam. It was about achieving a set goal but then the thought of failing again scared me. It paralyzed me. I initially gave myself different excuses for not paying for the examination then one day, I decided to give it all my all. I paid for the examination. I still remember whose card I used and where I was at that moment. I bought the highly recommended reference books on Amazon and my friends brought them to Nigeria. I studied the dictionary, bought an online quiz and I reached out to colleagues who had passed to guide me. One of them even gave me one of his notes. I took some time off work and stayed at my parents’ home.

Then the scored appeared – 299! I was petrified. I cried!!! It was painful. In case you did not know, the pass mark is 300.  I planned to write the following month, but I wasn’t psychologically ready. I had moved into a new role in a different department and the certification was no longer as important as it was in my previous department. However, the final paper was applicable in every department and the certification was part of my goal.

I gradually started reading again, posted my dilemma on the examination online networking site. Someone reached out to me, shared some resources and relevant tips. I also evaluated my use of technology, I sometimes get distracted by work-related task (the beauty of agile working) or social media during studying period, I guess the iPad I got as a gift came in handy as I moved all my study materials there.  Just like the previous module, I decided to take my examination a few hours before going on vacation but this time around, I sincerely asked Allaah for help. When I opened my eyes, I saw the highest mark in my CPIM journey.

Till next time, remember “Failure is so important. We speak about success all the time. It is the ability to resist failure or use failure that often leads to greater success. I’ve met people who don’t want to try for fear of failing.” – J.K. Rowling

This post was edited by Lerato Ndlovu of

Saturday, 11 February 2017


I cannot remember which match it was but I remember he sped like an Okada.

He was one of the reasons I started watching football.

I listened to Brilla FM and read Complete sport just to know how he was doing. I spoke about him as if we were related.

I remember hurrying out of my GCE Mathematics examination just to watch the World Cup qualifier. Even though he scored twice we did not qualify.

When he moved to England and my team played against his team, I could not decide whether to support Chelsea or Newcastle.

When I had the opportunity to travel, I would look around for him at the airport – waiting to get a photograph with him that I can finally put it up with a caption – Guess who was star struck today?




This post was inspired by the @africanwriters February challenge - day 10 title is Star struck.

Edited by Lerato

Friday, 10 February 2017

New beginnings

There was no sunshine or moon light. I am certain there were no stars. I could hear sounds but it seems far away. It was always dark and I wanted to leave everyday but at the end of the day I find myself exactly where I started.

Today I decided to run. I kept running till I reached a dead end, previously I would have turned back but today, I decided to hit the surface that always prevented me from going further. I thought it was a hard wall and I would get injured but surprisingly it was a wooden door and I broke it down.

For the first in a very long time, I watched the sunset, the moon glow and the stars glittering. Today is my new beginning, the day I decided to break the top of every tunnel so that whether it is sunny, the moon is out or the stars are shining I can always find my new beginning.



This post was inspired by the @africanwriters February challenge - day 9 title is New beginnings.

Thanks Lerato (blvbookclub) for editing this post 

Thursday, 1 December 2016

BLVbookclub's post: BE A SMART MONEY WOMAN

I am one of those people who never finish reading a self-help book or a biography but buys them whenever I am going through one of those low moments. I cannot remember when I started following Arese on Instagram, but I think I clicked on her profile from a post Nimi Akinkugbe put up. Arese’s “The Smart Money Woman” book launch/tour flooded my IG timeline frequently, but I thought it was another self-help book and that thought brought back memories of how I struggled to complete “Rich Dad Poor Dad” while in University. I am one of those people who pride myself in saving before spending so when my friend Bukola handed over Arese’s book to me as a late birthday gift, I was wondering what more I can learn. Click to continue

Edited by Lerato Nkanyezi  Ndlovu 


When I started driving, I had three guiding principles – 1.        Top up my fuel at half tank 2.        Always buy full tank when I...