After missing 7 editions, I finally attended the 8th on Saturday 28th June at Omneka Gallery, Ikoyi. (I can’t believe I missed 7 whole editions! So much for being a natural. Smh). A couple of weeks before, Ibukun asked me to man the registration point with her which I gladly accepted. Since it was my first time, I didn’t think it was a bad idea at all except that my coverage would suffer. I wouldn’t be able to take sufficient photos because I would obviously be working. So I asked Dunni to tag along so she could take photos and play pranks together. We both cleared our schedules and planned for the day down to our outfits, hairstyles, directions to the venue and whatnot.
The day arrived and I made sure I was properly prepped with the essentials. Left my house an hour thirty minutes before (I absolutely hate been late to anything). Got to Dunni’s house. Turns out she wasn’t able to make it. I knew I had to manage one way or the other. Luckily for me, I found my way easily. It was quite straightforward with a slight hitch and so I arrived at 12pm thanks to a minor traffic on the way.
I got to Omneka Gallery, quickly introduced myself to the not-so-anonymous Natural Nigerian and her sister. Apparently I was a tad too early (The program started around 3). The few vendors around were busy setting up their goods and services(I don’t know how I didn’t take pictures then. These little things matter). I was directed to my work station and given the materials I would use. Few minutes later, Ms Isioma arrived with her sister Uche who doubled as backup so to speak; we actually ended up working together because Ibukun was running late.
Guests as well as more vendors began trooping in and before I could say Jack Robinson, all the tables were occupied. The program still didn’t start (which I later got to know that another event was going on in the gallery and so we had to wait). At that point, I had given up the idea of actually attending the event. The Registration point wasn’t something I could just leave hanging. I had to do my part even though we eventually took shifts to take pictures and buy stuff so we aren’t totally left out. In the meantime, whilst registering people, I met and recognized a few people, blog readers and colleagues. Shout out to the eccentric Berry Dakara who’s also a colleague at AN. She tried to keep me company initially and had me in stitches in the process. Crazy girl, that one. It’s amazing how we bonded almost instantly. Oh and I met her husband Cakes who’s tres cool.
And then Detuke Morgan. Immediately I saw her,she looked awfully familiar. Apparently she dropped a comment here prior to then and her unusual name stuck.Yes people, I know my blog readers and visit their blogs as well. Also Simi of Those Natural Curls. I didn’t even know how I recognized her. Lol. And then Atilola, my boss @ AN whose first comment was ”So you’re short like this?” says the person I’m slightly taller and bigger than.
The staff at Sizzelle were so enthusiastic and excited to see me especially the manager. You needed to see her reaction when I introduced myself as a blogger for Sizzelle online. Lool! Hilarity! I think she called Dr Fromsky, who was absent immediately. The other guys were quite hospitable and……I was impressed really. I felt part of a team. These were my virtual colleagues whom I’ve never met before but were excited to see me. I couldn’t ask for more really.
Also the soft-spoken Ifeyinwa Ojekwe of Ajali was great as well. I absolutely love her accent. I could listen to her speak all day. Yes I have a thing for eloquence and accents!
Yes and not forgetting Dabs of Savvy Hair and Hub. She immediately recognized me too. Kemi Lewis of KLS Beauty Salon. Her top gave her up easily. Omozo of ONaturals. The fascinating Dr Egypt and her son Ocean– can’t remember her daughters’ name now.
In the midst of all the bonding and buying, the rain came and tried to mess things up. It came down real bad that we had relocate from under the canopy to a shade. It was so heavy that the whole place was literally flooded and guests were still coming in even though the numbers had reduced and we still had to register them. It was crazy really.
I tried to escape a bit to take photos. It was either then or never but returned shortly to help Uche. Ibukun had sort of ditched us to make her hair. There was a free styling session from Apples and Oranges Unisex Salon.
As I said earlier, I couldn’t partake in the main event but I managed to capture a couple of moments towards the end.
After all was set and done, Ibukun and I were ready leave together since we were heading to the mainland but the rain refused to stop and so we’re literally stranded. We had to wait for Atilola to pack up and drop us on the way because of the other Locs Appreciation event she had to attend. Sigh. It was quite a day really but as always I’m glad I attended. I got to buy a few things but most importantly meet people and take photos. When I got home, I realized I took over a hundred photos which was just sufficient for this post.
Looking forward to attending the next one before the end of the year.