Notoriously Inhospitable roads

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It took me 50 minutes to get home today (it should take 10minutes), I decided to share pictures of the bad roads made worse after the rain :).

Thanks A lot Rain 🙂

Have a great week everyone..

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Hurray!! Finally Found 15 Hotels With Websites That Function In Abuja. :)

Aside

Two men are shot down in Vietnam and imprisoned in the infamous Hoa Lo prison. They are isolated, chained to cement slabs, and continuously beaten with rusty shackles and tortured for information. Yet all through these men are receiving the same abuse, they form radically different beliefs about their experience. One man decides that his life is over, and in order to avoid any additional pain, commits suicide. The other pulls from these brutalizing events a deeper belief in himself, his fellow man, and his Creator than he’s ever had. This experience was used to remind people of the world the power of the HUMAN SPIRIT to overcome virtually any level of pain, ANY CHALLENGE, or any problem.

I just realized that whenever I think of booking hotels for holidays in Europe, I tend to jump on the Internet for hours looking for the best available deals. But for some reason I realized that after relocating to Nigeria, I haven’t gotten on the Internet to make local bookings of any kind. My colleague and I who are in charge of making bookings for members of staff in our organization tend to make calls directly to the hotels or third party agents. We decided to set ourselves a challenge –  for a month all hotel bookings we need to make will be made online, (no exceptions) through the hotels or third party booking agency website.

Challenge! Challenge!! Maybe because my subconscious has been made to believe for some reason that booking hotel rooms online in Nigeria is bound to be an arduous task, maybe it is because most of them don’t work (puzzled look). I cannot still pin down the reason for the change; I was however willing to give the ‘one-month’ challenge a good go. I decided however not to cheat on the challenge and went ahead to start the journey of making bookings for 13 colleagues without actually making any calls to the hotel or some travel agency and to be honest it’s been ‘different’. Whew! Sticking to our budget and a bit of standard, I was able to make the bookings for the 13 colleagues on day 3- whoop! Whoop! I observed as feared that some websites do not function, some do, some get you up until a point then functionality evades you. I won’t lie; it did my head in a bit, but I ended up getting what I needed and I proved to myself that although it is evident that the Nigerian hospitality industry is in dire need of ‘Totesphere.com” (lol!) the industry is slowly becoming a 21st century enterprise. In due time the industry will gradually join the rest of the world in the jet age. Bookings will be made easy, check-in procedures will move past writing down peoples names on a piece of paper and the industry will grow and create diverse businesses.

While making the bookings, I also did a little bit of pointless researching and ran into the picture below:

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I mean the above picture is discouraging; it has to be very bad publicity for the Nigerian travel industry as a whole… Ooh well! Thanks a lot Trip advisor!!!(sarcastic smile)

Much ado about nothing anyway :), below are 15 hotels in the Abuja Metropolis with functioning websites you can check them out for ideas on daily rates and service offers. I have also added two good third party booking hotel websites in Nigeria. Have a lovely day all.

Agura Hotels http://www.agurahotel.com

Bolingo Hotels & Tower http://www.bolingohotel-tower.com

Bolton White Hotels http://www.boltonwhitehotel.com

Chelsea Hotel http://www.chelseahotelabuja.com

Dannic Hotels http://www.abuja.dannichotels.com

Dayspring Hotels http://www.dayspringhotel.com

Denis Hotel http://www.denishotelsabuja.com

Grace Point Resort http://www.gracepointresorthotel.com

Gracious Hotel http://www.gracioushotel.com

Hawthorn Suites http://www.hawthornabuja.com

Hotel De Bently http://www.hoteldebently.com

Hotel Rosebud http://www.hotelrosebud.com

Nicon Luxury Hotel http://www.niconluxury.com

Nordic Villa http://www.thenordicvilla.com

Protea Hotel Apo Apartments http://www.proteahotels.com/abuja.html

Wakanow http://www.wakanow.com Hotel Nigeria http://Www.hotelng.com

There are no more pizza boxes, What! How! in a pizza shop? Lol!

A few things infuriate the ‘average man’, one is definitely offering to pack my pizza into a supermarket like paper bag(tesco bags) or nylon bag as it is referred to around here.

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So I decided to get two boxes of pizza from my favorite pizza place in Area 3, Abuja (Pizza Inn). I couldn’t wait, pulled up in front of pizza inn, walked in and ordered a meaty feast and a pepperoni pizza, rubbing my hands in anticipation, I waited patiently for my pizza to be properly cooked.

 

Catching a glimpse of the tv and probably tweeting about my pizza wait the attendant gave me a shout after about 15minutes, Sir I have your pizza ready. I went to the counter and found the attendant visibly worried while looking around frantically for something, I took the time out to count the cash out and placed it on the counter and waited.

 

Hello I said, can you pack my pizza in the boxes I need to head home now. He turned and said ermm Oga (sir) we don’t have any pizza boxes left, my boss has not ordered new boxes and he has gone home.

 

Wow! Wow! What do you mean you do not have boxes so where am I supposed to put my pizza, in my palms I suppose arghhh. He responded Sorry Sir, I can pack it into our nylon bags (paper bags). Do what you like I said and went to seat back down.

 

He packed it into the bags, grabbed my money off the counter and came over to where I was sited and handed the bags over to me. He even instructed me on how to carry the bags properly to avoid the content squashing. ‘OGA NO VEX’ (please don’t be upset sir) he repeated as I exited the building.

 

Looking back now, I find it so funny that a pizza shop can run out of boxes. Even after running out they still decided to sell to customers without offering any discounts or at least informing them before they placed their orders.

I still haven’t forgiven them so I have decided to stay off pizza for at least another five months. I’ll change my mind though if I get offered vouchers for free pizzas or massive discounts for those months. Hehehe J

 

Have a lovely weekend all.

Blucabana Restaurant & Cafe

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A new restaurant and club opened recently in Abuja called Blucabana. You will find it if you are on your way to Life Camp, Blucabana is located in  Mabushi District, on the road between Setraco Head office and Next Supermarket.

It is fully equipped with a gym and olympic-sized swimming pool, with excellent service and reasonable prices. There is also a children’s playground, it will surely serve all those whose kids are on long summer holidays.

I have been there once and it is a nice enough experience, I recommend it.

 

 

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Touring the Calanques of Cassis

Thirdeyemom

One of the highlights of any trip to Cassis is a must-see tour of the spectacular Calanques. Like Norway’s steep-cliff fjords, the jagged creamy-white calanques dotting the Mediterranean coast of Provence are a sight to see.

Following our delicious lunch of Salade au Chèvre Chaud paired with tart, fruity Vin de Cassis (one of the best wines in all of Provence) at an outdoor cafe along the lovely harbor of Cassis, it was on to our tour of the world-famous Calanques. The Calanques are steep-walled inlets that have developed through time along the Mediterranean coast. The largest, most popular stretch of calanques lies between the coast of Marseille and Cassis. This range stretches for 20 kilometers long and a narrow four kilometers wide. Arguably the most beautiful stretch as well, the wide, rugged and gorgeous “Massif des Calanques” is made primarily of creamy white limestone.

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Captivating Cassis: The Best Kept Secret in the South of France

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Thirdeyemom

“Qu’a vist Paris e noun Cassis a ren vist.”  

“He who has seen Paris and who has not seen Cassis can say … I have seen nothing.” Frédéric Mistral (1830 – 1914)

I had taken the short train ride from Marseille to Cassis, a small seaside fishing village, over twenty years ago. It was a sunny morning when we boarded the train and hopped off at the St. Charles train station, a 2-3 kilometer walk to town.  If I close my eyes, I can picture the lush verdant greenery of the rugged countryside of Provence, the brilliant blue seaside and the reddish-orange terra cotta tiles of the rooftops.  I also remember the beautifully colored buildings and boats of Cassis and how magical a place I had found. Would her colorful, playful buildings still dance atop the turquoise sea?

Like many places in the world, I never believed it would take me…

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The Best Hotel Room Ever (psych)

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Who doesn’t love to travel and stay in a hotel at the expense of a big business (buhuhahah)..

So after a 7hour trip by road to Anambra State, eastern Nigeria and some meetings after we arrived our destination, I couldn’t wait to jump on my bed and order room service.

Finally after about 9hours it was time to head up to my room- opened the door and found wires sticking out of the electricity switch.

Arghhhh, I don’t like this.

I called the front desk they immediately sent a nice gentleman up, he smiled and said Sir don’t be scared nothing will happen to you.
The gentleman probably did not realise that my issue was not ‘fear’ but anger that they had the nerve to sell the room in this state.

It took two days for the wires to get tucked back in. Whew!

I also found a cockroach in my bathroom, I should have taken a picture lol! I did not complain this time, I just let it slide and happily shared my room with the roach 🙂 .

Cannot wait to head back home…..