I remember a few years ago, I told a friend that a lot of things that were socially acceptable in other states weren’t in Warri. e.g. If you follow certain kinds of fashion trend, an old lady your grandma’s age wouldn’t mind screaming at you because she feels you are strangely (indecently) dressed. That’s how amusingly intrusive they could get.
Life in Warri is rather a subjective concept; to some people it might be a boringly conservative one. There’s no baseless display of class. It’s either you have your house or you are a tenant. It’s either you own your car or you use a bus or better still you ‘fly okada'(I just love the rush of fresh air when on a bike). We ‘no’ dey form for anybody’, even if you want to make it obvious to others you are way above their league, it would be a waste of time because sincerely nobody cares, Hahaha!
Yet, It’s comfortable for me, no hassles, no ‘gra-gra’ hustling. Thus, I find it alluring when I go to other states and see the rowdy cheerful crowds.
It might not be as fabulous as Lagos, no galleria, malls or easily accessible beaches and cool restaurants, though there is room for better structuring and planning which would lighten up the city…but yet we make do with what we have.
Watch ‘Nite of a thousand laughs’ and all you hear is ‘waffi nor dey carry last’, hahaha, ‘we dey carry last well well o’…a lot of misconceptions about us that we are RAZZ…truth is, there are actually a lot of nice people here like me and we are not all out to cause ‘gbege’ or ‘wahala’.
We are a multi-faceted people. United in our diversity and trust me when I say Warri solidarity does pay, (ohh I just love it when I find a stranger and we can instantly click because we discover that we are Waffarians!)
We have a range of meals we like to eat, predominantly, garri and a variety of soups. Also, road side snacks like boli and groundnut, roasted corn and coconut or ube(pear).
It is also true that recently there was an epidemic of kidnapping and other social vices. Whilst, some persons are quick to vehemently and polemically criticize them, no one is asking ‘what has the government or anyone done to ameliorate the onslaught of social decadence and youth restiveness?’ Your response is as good as mine!
Despite all this, I still find Warri a safe haven, a very warm place where if you are honest enough you would definitely succeed. Even though I could choose other states where I would like to stay, none would compare to the comfort and serenity I have experienced here within the nation’s big heart.