In my last post I had explained that I managed to swap my Hong Kong flight to go to Kuala Lumpur which I was incredibly excited about. However the day before I was coming back to Dubai from Manchester after 6 days at home when I checked my roster to see I had been pulled from my KUL flight to go Abuja, Nigeria… Obviously this wasn’t what I wanted but this can happen for operational needs and I thought it’s a new destination and its better than a turn around?
It was a light load on the way over and a lot of customers were fasting for Ramadan so it was a relatively breezy flight on the way over. We landed into Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport at 3pm and it was around an hours drive to the hotel which we stayed at. I’d asked a few of the crew if they had plans to do anything but I was told it was pretty unsafe to leave the hotel which I gathered from the drive as an armed officer followed behind us in the bus. Although I had really wanted to go and visit Aso Rock which was one of the things Google recommended, however going solo was probably not a good idea so I passed up on it.
The drive over to the hotel really surprised me about the landscape of Nigeria. It was much much greener than expected and also had a lot of individual hills. It was actually an interesting drive just to watch out the window, although that may just be me after years of being a Geography student and learning about places like this. There were a lot of garden shops on the side of the roads and many women walking past carrying huge amounts of things on their heads and incredibly skinny cows and I think goats dotted about. Along the roads there were many of the country’s flag painted onto rocks and wherever possible but also so much armed police and we had to either stop or slow down many times as the police monitored the roads. You sometimes take for granted what a safe place you live in!
That evening after checking in, I spent it in my room where I ordered room service, watched some TV and skyped my parents.
I slept for a much needed 12 hours then woke to see I had missed breakfast so ordered some spaghetti bolognese and then went for a little wander around the hotel to try and get a view of what Abuja is like.
There was a little art gallery in the grounds of the hotel and I stopped to look at some of the paintings and got talking to the owner who happened to be from Manchester!
I then headed back to my room to start getting ready for work and go back to the airport. It was a full load on the way back and also Iftar time (when you can break your fast) so it was a super busy non stop flight the whole way home, much different from the way there!
We landed back into Dubai at 4am and I was very ready to get home and crawl into bed. A very uneventful trip (I’m sorry, I feel like its been a few of those recently) hopefully my next months roster will be a bit more action packed – again I’m impatiently waiting for it!!
My next trip is to Sydney which I am super excited for! Its a city I’ve always wanted to visit and I’m going to be able to see my friend Sophie who I haven’t seen in 18 months! It is going to be an incredibly quick 30 hour layover!!