On my way back from church yesterday, my eyes flashed through an obituary as the commercial vehicle I boarded slowly crawled- by. I was forced to alight from the vehicle so I could confirm what I saw and behold *drums rolling* my eyes zoomed to the part of the obituary that read “Aged: 223yrs”. I was taken aback, I couldn’t believe my
223yrs old! I screamed, seriously! I just couldn’t help it.
Immediately I tried finding out the year she was born and it dated back to 1790,
Do humans still lived this long? Is this for real? How come I have never read about this
woman anywhere before now? Why is she not on the Guinness books of records?
All these questions begging for answers flashed through my
crazy curious mind. I
never realized I had spent close to 20 minutes staring at this obituary with my
mouth agape. Not until an elderly man beckoned to me.
My mouth snapped shut when he drew nigh and he continued “buroda ki lo shele mo ti wo yin lati aro, se ko si oo” (I have been watching you stare at this obituary, hope there is no problem). He said some others things which I never understood because my Yoruba wasn’t that good enough- how I wished I hadn’t skipped those classes when I was in high school.
I replied the little way I could and he offered me water. Although my throat were dry, but I was thirstier for answers to my questions; how I wish I had met the old lady. She would have had answers to some of my questions, questions I might never get answers to.
Nevertheless, the old man told me some things about her, he even said she could still use the toilet herself before her demise. When I asked how she died, he replied saying she called all members of the family (great-great grandchildren inclusive), took turns to hug them and died right on the “apoti” (stool) she was seated.
When I asked if I could get some of her photos, the old man took a deep breath and said something which I never understood. He finally opened his mouth to say something I understood, he said the woman never had a photograph apart from the one they used for her obituary and they were actually surprised when she told them she wants to take a photograph.
When she was asked why she needed a photo of herself? She said she wanted them to always have her around after she is gone to join her ancestors. And not more than a week after this event, she passed on.
This woman practically lived before Nigeria was formed; she was about 170 years old when we got independence. She practically knew the foundation on which this ‘great’ nation of ours was built. She even experienced both world wars. She lived all these things I have read in journals and books- from slave trades, to the civil war blah blah blah…. she was a living museum.
I couldn’t help to think about how life looked back then- there was no internet, (at least not in this part of the world), cell phones; technology was still dragging its feet then.
If many of us were to time-travel back to that century with the kind of exposure we have now, I doubt if we would last a day.
Yet with all odds on our side we still f**ked!
We are exposed to more information daily than our fore-fathers have been exposed to throughout their life time and instead of us leveraging this technological advantage, we prefer
f**king sitting back with our legs crossed relying
on the achievement of others.
It is our duty to keep evolution going and we can only be at our best when we create a landmark so the next generation coming after us can appreciate what we had achieved and continue from where we stopped.
Life is very weird. We might not have the chance to live
1000yrs like the old woman
did, but we have something greater, something she never experienced.
We have something greater than a thousand years; we have all the necessary materials in place to get us wherever we wanna go if only we could tap into them.
What do you wanna be remembered for when you are long gone? Why settle for less when you know you are much better than what you are doing right now? Why not pursue your dreams in a context of happiness?
Let these crazy questions run through your mind.
Life is not as long as 223yrs any longer.
You can only manage it by living each day as if it were your last.
Don’t you wanna die doing what makes you happy?
Life is crazy….
Sadiq Daniel is an
crazy Nigerian hustlerpreneur and public speaker that blogs about life, marketing and branding. You may pursue him on twitter: @sadiq_daniel where he tweets daily on how you can make billions per hour
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