Chronicles from Lagos - Eating at a fully fledged vegetarian restaurant and other things to do in Lagos City 

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Caught one of the many graffiti works in Lagos while in transit 

Happy New Month Beautiful people,

This is my second last update on my mental health awareness tour in Nigeria (you can catch all the other updates via the links provided at the bottom of the tour announcement post).This is trip is an actualization of a meet up I hint on in this post on things I did and those I found interesting while in Nigeria for the first time. Besides the amaaaazing successes seen in my tour, I have also had the opportunity to experience so much of the country and its people, get a few more local non alcoholic drinks, places to get vegetarian meals and a few vegetarian food options other than Jollof that I can mix up - I just need a third trip and I will definitely do a 'being vegetarian in Nigeria' post. On today's post, I will share about Lagos and the things I loved (read my list of things to do in Abuja and its environs)

1. Wednesday live music at Rapsody, Ikeja Mall 
We sat at the back booth to celebrate my birthday and sing along to familiar tunes 

My 33rd bday happened to fall on one of the Wednesdays so the JCI Nigeria team decided to keep my phone busy by calling me all day with wishes and culminated it all with a dinner at Rapsody, Ikeja Mall.I enjoyed their salad and pasta which had to be customised for me because everything on the menu had meat. I had lovely conversations with almost everyone who came through as we sang along to familiar tunes.

I am so excited to be 33... I am at a good place in my life after a very shaky transition from a lot of things. Has taken a lot of inner journey work and clearly defining who and what matters to me as I practice a lot of mindfulness and being present ... When I went to bed that night, I had so much to be thankful for including the best bday gift from God,  celebrating my birthday doing what I was born to do - travel, teach/speak and write about mental health...cant wait to see what else God has in store for me at 33.

My camera failed me but our smiles don't lie...Girls Trip was the BUSINESS!!!

2. Movies at Ikeja Mall
I know movie theatres aren't the first place anyone wants to 'experience' when travelling but I loooove that Nigerians show their own movies at the cinemas as a way of promoting local content. By the way, friend Asurf has a movie titled Hakkunde that has been showing from August 4th, so if you are in Nigeria, go catch it. Asurf is an amaaaazing self taught film maker I met when I won the Google Africa award...he was in Kenya then shooting for Google West Africa and we have been great friends ever since, watching each other grow in our self taughtness of the work we do. His movie, Hakkunde is an edutainment type, think that's what they are called, on unemployment and follows a guy who just finished university but finds it hard to gain employment. I however didn't watch it when I went to the movies because I was to meet Asurf later in my trip and I wanted to see his movie with him as I told him how so very proud I am of him. So when we went to the movies we watched Girls Trip - which is the most hilarious movie ever...y'all need to go catch some of that after you watch Hakkunde...i loved Girls Trip so much, I emailed my sissy, as she has insisted on tagging us, to tell her we need to go to either Essence Festival or New Orleans in the very near future. Dear God let someone on the Essence Festival team see this post or hear about me and invite me as a speaker or panelist or something.

PS: I once posted about wanting to meet Vikram Patel and Elyn Saks because I looooved their TED talks on Mental health and I got to hang out with Vikram when he came to Kenya and was in conversation with Elyn Saks during my month long USA speaking tour aaaand because God is soooo awesome, I also got to do my own TED Talk so Essence Festival, here I come.

 3. Drive through the art gallery that is Lagos city 
Hanging Big foot piece is my title for this piece...Lagos is full of art pieces, it is an art piece in itself

Lagos is one big art gallery which I cannot get enough of...It always reminds me of Accra which I visited in 2013 and can't wait to go back (because I am all about sending my vibes out - any Ghanaians following me or people looking to work in Ghana, can we make my mental health awareness tour happen there?)
Apologies my pictures are all caught in transit but who decides to have boats on the highway, Lagos you ROCK MY BOAT!!!

 4. Freedom Park, Lagos

After criss crossing Nigeria for my 6 state awareness tour, I finally got time to hang out with Asurf. Unfortunately, the cinema timings for his movie didn't coincide with when we were both available so we didn't catch it together as I had planned. But because he knows I am all about outdoor gigs, he took me to Freedom Park Lagos for - in his words 'an afrosomething something, you know those things you love listening to'. Dear God, thank you for friends who understand me. (PS: it's Asurf who took me to Fela's Shrine to see Seun Kuti perform last time I was here)

Freedom Park is a colonial time slave prison turned museum and events place.
Entrance to the cells

Since we went at night, we didn't get to experience it in its entirety (already added to my third Nigeria trip bucketlist alongside the Zuma rock in Abuja Palace in Benin City and Olumo Rock in Abeokuta) but we got to see the cells.
Inside of cell
It was good catching up with Asurf and just hearing his process of getting his first movie to the theatres. Last time I was here, he'd just finished shooting it and in the almost one year time span, he was in post production, marketing and promotion. I shared about my mental health awareness tour in Kenya and now Nigeria. It is always a pleasure hanging out with him and just sharing life, ambition and so much more plus laughter and stupidity.

A post shared by Oluseyi Asurf Asurf100 (@iamasurf) on 

5. Veggie Victory
This deserved a mention of its own...during my last visit to Nigeria, it was hard for me to get food and I just settled for a lot of tinned food - mostly chilli beans. Sweetlings, I am excited to announce that I discovered a fully fledged vegetarian/ vegan restaurant in Nigeria, Veggie Victory. When we were in Secret Garden, Abuja with Oluchi I was excited that they had a full page of vegetarian pizza options - normally we get a small corner...imagine my joy at Veggie Victory when I got a menu with nothing but vegetarian options.

My overfilled plate

Veggie Victory is located inside Freedom Park. I tried the tofu and vegetable meat suya...yes there is something like vegetable meat. Suya is a Nigerian meal of meat marinated with spices on a options were tofu and veggie meat. I also had eforiro which is a Nigerian meal of veggies mixed with different types of this case, vegetable meat and for starch, I had the concoction rice which was a mix of all types of rice - fried, Jollof and mixed...from this meal choices, which I now feel were really greedy choices, you can tell I was too excited I wanted to order everything on the menu. My best thing there was the tofu suya.

I leave you with this beauty I caught in was so amazing...and that shade of grey is on another level.

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