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All Posts By Adebola MBV

Make It A Habit To Visit A New Country Yearly.

You should always make it a habit to visit a new country.

I regret not documenting my stay in Singapore on a blog or a vlog. As many of you may know, when I moved to Singapore. I took it with both hands and also travelled to other countries in South East Asia. I am now and so will not allow the past to stop me from talking about my recent travels. For me, talking/writing about it brings it back to life – so you will all be doing me a favour!

as for me I regret to say that I forget ever boarding the plane there and even travelling to the other countries


Since I started travelling, I have made a conscious decision to travel home (Nigeria) every 1-2 years. And so far, I have achieved that. For me it’s been important to know my roots. Every time I do travel to Nigeria – which is well known for her rich culture and traditions. I learn something new about my family and the country. That’s hugely important for me. I have also, which brings me to the title of this blog post. Made it a command to myself that I travel to a new country every year. Not just a new country but a country that I would never ever expect myself to go to. Last year I visited Nigeria. Iceland, Spain, Germany and Morocco. All brand new to me (except Nigeria of course). 


Brand new; what does that mean to someone. What that means to me is that EVERY single time I make the horrid journey to the airport. Go through security and get some nice perfume or make-up from the Duty-Free Shop. There is something brand new about each journey. I notably always forget the experience of the airport which, believe it or not, I hate!  Yeah if you’re always the friend holding everyone – which I always am, it becomes a dread. 

Travel Memories

The things I do love more than compensate though:- the  different cultures, the different environments, the food. Which is mostly very new to me (I’m a pushover for trying new things – I’ve eaten duck feet before; don’t ask!). The architecture, the sense of a different identity, a different life somewhere else in another part of the world; heck even the political structure is usually completely different to my own here in the UK. 


I hope not to disappoint my readers so soon. But my travels will be coming to a slight default this year. Concentrating on more home grounded things and taking a hiatus on my travels . And taking a token off my friends book – “these countries are not going anywhere”.  I shall rekindle my travel-lust in the near future.


While I may not currently be travelling as I may have led you to expect. I do hope you learn the importance of going somewhere new – as often as you can.


What Have I Gained From Travelling?

The most important thing I’ve gained is that my character develops every time I go somewhere new. I always learn something new. I come back with an understanding of a particular moment in my life. That I didn’t get to understand when I was home. Interesting I know. But it might even be as little as learning something about the person you travel with or about yourself. All I know is that I always come back with something!


So I urge you to join me and travel somewhere different this and every year. Open yourself up to learn something new about the people around you and most importantly, about yourself – yes, this self!

So, where are you hoping to go this year? Wishing you an adventurous journey of discovery!

Also Read: MyBreakingViews 10 Travel Hacks In Seeing The World

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8 Things To Know Before Studying Abroad.

Being at University seems a long distant memory, when in actual fact it was only a few years ago that I was taking my last exams on my study abroad and getting ready for graduation. I remember it all like it was yesterday. The most memorable part of my University experience was studying abroad in Singapore.

On January 14th 2013, I left the UK on my study exchange adventure for 7 months, to the Lion City – Singapore.  It was a dream come true and actually one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life so far. In other posts you will learn exactly why studying abroad changed me! But for now I want to share some tips on studying abroad.

Now I know it was a while back but I still think there are some lessons that can be learnt from my study exchange.

1) Homesickness

Believe me it’s real, even though I thought that I can brave it out. I couldn’t. Studying abroad can lead to homesickness.

Hang on, before you judge me! I lived at home with my amazing family when I was at University and as much as I loved living in Singapore, there were plenty of times when I couldn’t wait to get home to gain a sense of normalcy. I remember that the first week was the hardest for me (except the sun and clubs of course). My room key wasn’t working, I didn’t like the food, my laptop broke 3 days before I left and I was having issues with just adjusting to the time difference (Singapore is 8 hours ahead of the UK). So, you can imagine my stress levels!

However, after a few weeks I settled in really well, adapted to the time difference, made friends with the locals who showed me where to eat, my Auntie sent me my fixed laptop and my room key was also fixed. I started to enjoy the beauty of the country and her people.

2) Keeping On Top Of Your Studies. 

I must admit that keeping on top of my studies was extremely difficult for me. Being in a new country in the heat made me feel like I was on holiday for a long time and made it almost impossible to stay motivated to study; but as I was in my final year and with a Dissertation due at the end of the year, I knew I had to snap out of holiday mode.

It’s important when you’re abroad, to know the modules you are taking and how they are marked back home. You don’t want to be like me and later find out that an A grade is a B grade back home! Trust me I wasn’t impressed!

Devise a plan of work that you need to do and stick to it – because you don’t want your school work to get on top of you.

3) Expenses 

Moving to Singapore worked out well for me. I lived at home so I had saved so much money from working part-time, but I know other people’s circumstances might be different where they live away from home. My only advise would be to plan your finances accordingly.

Some study abroad exchanges do allow their students to work on a student visa but in Singapore that was not permitted. If you can work on your study exchange go for it. If you can’t, good planning and strict budgeting is key.

4) Another travel base 

Living in Singapore was amazing. There were also so many other countries around Singapore that I could travel to. Countries that seemed a world away form the UK – like Australia – became so accessible for me to travel to… so I did.

I travelled all of South East Asia – which wouldn’t have been so accessible to me without the study exchange programme. Places like Cambodia, Thailand, Laos and Vietnam where under £100 round trip!  The prices would have been over £500 if it had been from the UK! If you are looking for cheap travel, this is the best way to go about it.

5) Applying And Preparing Can Take So Long… 

Wooow. If I remind myself of the application process, I may just say to anyone thinking to do a study exchange to forget it! I first had to write why I wanted to do a study exchange, then keep my grades to an acceptable level (this bit was the easy part for me).

Once I was accepted, I then had to apply for my student visa, accommodation, pay for my accommodation, flights, meal plans, etc, etc….. the list was endless! I was lucky enough to have my family and friends behind me who supported me all the way; and it was all worth it once it was all done.

The process is long and tedious, but well worth in the end!

6) Friends across the world for life. 

Do you like travelling? Studying abroad is a must!

Well now you have your friends places to stay when you travel. Studying in a new University does mean you will inevitably meet new people. Some people you will never see again (trust me, these people you don’t want to see!) but some people you will be able to build lifelong relationships with.

Even today, I have a friend from Malaysia whom I call whenever I need to speak to her. She has also come to visit me in the UK and spent Christmas day with my family and I.

Such friends are friends for life and it’s always great to meet up with them whenever you go travelling!

7) Embracing Another Culture 

Living in Singapore as a study abroad student showed me different types of culture – nothing like the UK! For one thing, the country has so many laws that I honestly couldn’t keep up with by myself!

Chewing gum is banned! Drugs, public affection, the usual jay walking, littering and even eating on public transport were and are most probably still all forbidden! Trust me, even my friend got caught and fined for eating ice cream on the metro (tube) –  to which she was later charged to court!

Whichever laws there are, obey them!  You don’t want to get charged to court, trust me!

8) Learn A New Language 

Now let me just stop you there and say that Singapore speaks English so I never learnt a new language.

Although I learnt Singlish (which is broken Singaporean English), i never learnt any specific languages and I’m afraid I didn’t make any attempt to but I do have friends who have also done study exchanges and have learnt new languages. So if you can learn a new language, go for it!

I do hope these tips help you and if you have also done a study exchange, do not hesitate to share the tips you have learnt from your experience.Find out where to do a study abroad here.

Also Read: The Perfect Tools on How To Apply for a Study Exchange

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ROYAL ASCOTS 2017 TBT VLOG!!!

Hope you have been enjoying the sun. I most certainly have! Recently attended the Royal Ascots 2017 and it was absolutely amazing! I have been wanting to attend the Ascots for so long and when one of my closest friends said she also wanted to go I knew I had to make it happen! I thought you may want to see my very short clip of the day especially if are thinking about going next year of the year after.

What am I wearing

Fascinator & Clutch: http://uk.accessorize.com/

Dress: http://www.chichiclothing.com

Shoes: https://www.zara.com/uk/

Makeup: done by moi

(if you would like a video leave a comment below) As usual – Comment, Like and SUBSCRIBE!! ❤️

While you are here have a read of 5 Things You Need To Know About The Royal Ascots …

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My First Nigerian Wedding Experience In Nigeria!

As I have been writing about my stay in Nigeria check it out on Nigerians Travel Too – Tales from Lagos -an IJGB’s Version

I thought I should carry on by sharing my cuz wedding that I attended last year. It was the first Nigerian wedding that I had been to in Nigeria and it was Ammmmazzzzzing! It was quite an experience for me as most; if not all Nigerian weddings I have attended have been in the UK so going to a Nigerian wedding in Nigeria and being a bridesmaid – well it was just an absolute honour.

The Big Day

The wedding started from the day I arrived in Nigeria, which was a day before the actual event lol (I know I’m terrible)! My cousin and his wife had lots of last min prep as you can imagine.

Fast forward to the BIG DAY!!….. The wedding was in Ikeja so we stayed in a hotel near the venue, the night before.

We was all supposed to be at the venue from 7 am in the morning,  (that was not happening) but I woke up at 6:30 am so clearly we didn’t start on time (don’t judge me please I was very tired).  I still had the audacity to make time for breakfast, don’t ask me how.

Getting ready

First thing was hair and make-up and traditional outfits, which was for the traditional wedding. In short, the traditional wedding is a tradition for Nigerians (it can vary between tribes) It usually involves both families meeting each other (the bride and the groom). The groom comes to the bride’s family and asks for her hand in marriage, with lots of gifts. The bride usually takes her time at this point to arrive at the venue (gotta keep the man waiting lol) It’s usually ends with lots and lots of dancing; music and of course lots of money hahaha !

The second stage of the wedding is where we do the white wedding. For me this is when we Turrrrrrn Up! This is where we do the traditional blessings, or English marriage ceremony.

Here are a few pictures from the wedding #MayD17 #MayD2017

❤

Congrats to Mayowa and Dipo

I hope you enjoyed the pictures.

I will be writing a post on why I think it’s important to go home (Nigeria for me) and some things you can do in Nigeria so stay tuned…

In the meantime, I would love to hear about any traditional weddings you have been to in the world.

Please do share in the comments below!

Video : @ladimilanfilms

Planner: @mimiluxe_events

Wedding Dress: @tubo_

Makeup: @arabridals

Suit: @kimonokollection

Hair: @jodyscurlbox

Bridesmaid Dresses @elpismegalio

Also Read: Interview|NigeriansOfEngland

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Tales from Lagos -an IJGB’s Version | Nigerians Travel Too

See original article here – Tales from Lagos -an IJGB’s Version 

NTT: Do you feel like Nigeria is home? 

MBV: Yes and No. When I go to Nigeria, I do feel like I am home. It’s a weird feeling though. I belong as regards my skin colour- I’m black and the majority of the people in Nigeria are black so that really feels like home. I enjoy the food, Yam and Egg for breakfast to be exact! (Could literally eat this for breakfast everyyyy dayyyyliterarily!) Egusi and pounded yam for lunch and my cousin makes this amazing Indomie noodles with peppers and other ingredients, so I would have that for dinner.

I ENJOY the sunshine! And I love just feeling like I am home. Nigeria is funny because when you are there there’s a sort of “Wooow everyone looks like me” (Well, kind of) and then I open my mouth to speak and then you see it- You see how they look at you differently. I know the locals know I’m not Nigerian. They usually call me Queen of America – which is always amusing and annoying because I’ve never lived in America.

IJGB

I’m British born and bred. So I know that they don’t know where I’m from, but they know I’m from abroad. They know that I’m not really one of them. They give you a look like yeah this one ‘Just Got Back’ which I believe is a thing now? #IJGB A.K.A I Just Got Back! They know that I am not one of them and in that moment I speak, I am reminded that I’m not really home. In my head, I pretend that I’m home and that’s usually up to 3 weeks and my time is up!

So do I feel like I am home when I visit Nigeria? Yes and no again. I’m in a place that I wish was better, more socially acceptable, shined as much as it should because Nigeria has so much going for her. I wish I could call it my home but really and truly, I know I have to swallow the hard pill and accept that it’s not really ever been my home and most likely never will be.

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Nigerian Sunshine Suits Me. ☀️??

A post shared by Adebola of #MyBreakingViews (@mybreakingviews) on

NTT: What issues infuriate you about Nigeria?

MBV: What doesn’t infuriate a fellow Nigerian about Nigeria? The last time I visited, I was there for my cousin’s wedding #MayD2017, which was in Lagos and then I decided to stay for Christmas. This is the longest I’ve ever stayed in Lagos. I usually stay in Delta state which is another ball game compared to Lagos. Delta for those of us who have never been is very quiet and civilised compared to Lagos.

Anyway, there was petrol scarcity, not to mention the traffic. As much as I could see this infuriate my cousins, I don’t believe it affected me as much, because they ensured that I was still able to go out and have fun. One thing I noticed was that Uber fares had gone up because of the petrol scarcity, but being from the UK, I think the taxi fares were still considerably cheaper when compared to London prices. The only thing that really really really infuriated me and yes I have to say “really” 4 times because it’s the only thing that drives me mad – is mosquito bites!! Oh my gosh! They’re devils! (I feel like they are secretly plotting for my next return as I write this LMAO!) I truly believe the mosquitoes in Nigeria are on steroids; they love my blood. I’m sure it’s “fresh blood” for them as the locals call it when they see my bites! Truly, the marks they leave on my skin are on another level. I literally complained everyday about mosquitoes! It must have driven my family mad!

The ultimate winner ..

NTT: What challenges do you face when relating with locals?


MBV: I don’t feel like I have faced any real hard challenges when relating with locals to be honest. When I hear the stories that my cousins tell me, I know I haven’t faced anything to be honest, but I do know that once they hear me speak, they think they can try and bump prices. I know most of us can agree. Luckily enough, most of us come from a home where we know how to bargain, so I know when to use it and that time is always in Nigeria. However, sometimes I can allow it, other times, I have to let them know that I drink garri and water for breakfast, lunch and dinner back home (home being the UK). The best way to get around having to deal with locals is knowing roughly the prices that things should be.

I remember visiting Nigeria a few years ago, I wanted wash my hair. Me being a typical observer I asked my aunt before I left the house how much it should be to wash my hair and she gave me a rough figure of no more than N500. I got to the closest salon and the woman told me N2500. I turned around to leave and she begged me; asked how much I was willing to pay and I said N600. Guess what? She was absolutely fine with the payment and she even styled my hair! The cheek! To be honest I don’t blame them. They clearly hear my accent and think I’m rich LOOOOL, which I will be of course!

NTT: What spots would you recommend as must visit in Lagos?

MBV: There are so many spots for one to hang at in Lagos. I’m afraid in Nigeria, the only thing I know is partying and eating Egusi soup! I also love Afro-beat a bit too much actually and for some reason, Afro-beat sounds much sweeter in Nigeria – you know with the heat and everyone there is just so gingered LOL!

No honestly, I went to the Lekki Conservation Centre with a friend, which was absolutely amazing. I would go there again. There are beautiful animals, a tree house and the Longest Canopy walk in Africa!! My cousin also took me to Takwa Bay beach, which was quite an experience indeed. There are lots of beaches and sites to see, so I know I still have plenty to do when next I’m there. Nigeria is an amazing man!

NTT: Any life hacks for IJGB

MBV: Any life hacks for #IJGB babes? not really, just enjoy life! Go out every night when you are there, turn up and enjoy the sunshine. Carry some mosquito repellent though.

Turn up at every given opportunity

Thank you to Ade (My Breaking Views) for an honestly beautiful interview, I can definitely relate!

My over all hack for IJGBs is to always have some change on you (lower denominations) because nobody ever  has change. They play this game so often you realise later that you’re parting away with your money because you just need to get back on the road. I paid a taxi man in his own coin and he ‘never esperedit’.

I had a 200 naira change with him and he told me he had only 100 naira. I luckily had 150 naira and offered him. Within a twinkle of an eye he produced my 200 naira. It was okay for him to take my 100 naira but it wasn’t alright for him to part away with his 50 naira! Imagine! Always prepare for your visits to Nigeria, You can never be too prepared!

For what you can get up to in Nigeria, stay glued for our next post. You’ll be inspired.

For travel plan support as an IJGB, please talk to us for a trouble free trip- Info@Nigerianstraveltoo.com.

Read also: Could Nigeria Be Home Permanently?

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My 6 Thoughts On What Makes A Good Friend.

What actually makes a good friend? Read below on My 6 Thoughts On What Makes A Good Friend.

1. Listen to your friends

Please note this may not apply to everyone. I’ve witnessed people do the absolute opposite. But thankfully I’m not friends with them, so I’m ok. 

No seriously, do you listen to your friends? Do your friends listen to you? Sometimes I can get so caught up in myself that I forget to actually just listen to my friends and find out how they are and what have they been doing – even if they haven’t done anything. 


2. Honesty

 Oh my gosh, this is a big one. I’ve had people that I classified as friends in the past and thought that they had been honest with me. Nah, actually I knew when they lied and that’s why we are no longer friends. Honesty is a huge factor in friendship. If you don’t have it you have to ask yourself why? Why are you not honest with each other. 


3. Loyalty

 This is also of huge importance for me. I need to trust your loyalty. Don’t get me wrong, there are times when this is tested but I have to know you are very a loyal person, seriously. I am very careful when I meet people. I find myself testing them (unconsciously). If my spirit doesn’t take to them, then I just don’t trust them. It’s not foolproof but it’s a good start.


  4. Respect

Respect or the lack of it is a major sign for things to come in any relationship.  A person who does not respect you enough or not at all is telling you that he or she places little or no value on you! ……and what happens to things of little or no value? They end up in the trash bin! So if you hang around such people, don’t be surprised when they start treating you like trash!

5. Personal Space 

I always need my space. I crave for it and luckily I have good friends who understand and respect that. In the past, I’ve met people who didn’t like it and take it completely the wrong way but it’s about understanding someone’s personality and recognising that we are all different in some ways. It’s about understanding your friends.


6. Forgiveness 

forgiveness

This is something I have learnt the hard way, seriously. Forgiveness is so important. There’s so much power in forgiveness. People do make mistakes and if you can forgive them, it can sometimes make the relationship stronger and better. There are people who may no longer even be your friends but just forgiving them for their wrongdoings towards you is the peace of mind for you; release for them. 


Believe me, Try the 6 guidelines above.

Now I am not an expert in relationships or making friends. I promise you, but I have seen several people come and go; and I can finally confidently say that I have been blessed with the most loyal and trustworthy people around me, thank God!

Also Read:  How To Keep In Contact with Your International Friends & Family Around The World

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