This previous week marks the 26th anniversary of the transition of Mudashiru Babatunde Tiamiyu Lawal.
How time flies. The world has simply moved on unperturbed, not lacking a beat, not even for Muda, a real African soccer legend, the most effective midfield gamers Nigeria has ever produced, one which served the nation within the nationwide crew for nearly ten years, with 5 appearances on the African Cup of Nations beneath his belt, adorned with two nationwide honours and given the official place of Nigeria’s official Soccer Ambassador.
I bear in mind him fondly, and pray that he continues to relaxation peacefully within the bosom of his Creator.
The transfers round Europe
I’m critically in a daze.
The rumours, the intrigues and the speculations across the actions, the wheeling and dealing, and the transfers of gamers round Europe have left me dizzy.
I’ll nonetheless take my time, wait and look ahead to the scenario to cool down earlier than commenting and enterprise any significant projections and evaluation on the strengths of the groups within the coming new season.
For now, it’s best to easily siddon and look.
Carl Ikeme And The Author’s Block
I plead to be granted a ‘get-out-of-jail’ card, a literary license that rescues me from the barrenness of the author’s block this week, and grants me the freedom to go exterior of soccer, and, certainly exterior of sports activities right now, to feed my thirst for something however soccer to take me away from the unhappy and stunning information of Carl Ikeme’s coming down with Leukemia, an ailment that has come from the blues to aim to shatter the nice younger goalkeeper’s soccer goals, and to jeopardise his nation’s plan to place ahead its finest eleven towards Cameroon in 4 weeks’ time.
Sadly, Carl is not going to be within the line-up to bolster Nigeria’s probabilities.
Solely our Creator understands why issues occur the way in which they do. So, in religion I pray that with this early detection he’ll defeat the illness, and can stay lengthy sufficient nonetheless to see his off-springs even to the third technology.
I pray that the therapeutic hand of God will contact him and heal him shortly.
So, to distract me from sports activities right now, allow me to publish what I drafted in an plane in 2004.
THE FROZEN WAVES OF THE SAHARA!
The Pilot has simply introduced it. We’re 31,000 ft above sea degree.
I’m on a flight from Cairo going again to Lagos on the finish of the Gamers’ Committee assembly of the Confederation of African Soccer, CAF, of which I’m a member.
I look out of the window. There may be not a single cloud in sight. The scene earlier than my eyes is of the clearest blue sky.
Beneath the clear blue sky at eye degree and the expansive view under, so far as the eyes can see, is a baked earth of sand and extra sand, a sea idle and immobile. It’s not like something I’ve ever seen earlier than.
Phrases freeze in my ideas, insufficient and inappropriate to seize this superior, bewildering, magnificent and delightful scene earlier than me.
Nothing is stirring or transferring. Nothing! Even time has to point out some respect and stand at consideration.
The solar is at work, blazing and baking the land, forming little darkish shadows behind 1,000,000 little dunes of sand – an eerie spectacle of uncompleted waves frozen in mid-action!
All of a sudden, my eyes catch a motion, a flash of one thing on the nook of my imaginative and prescient. Rooftops? Sure, a cluster of roof tops down under within the distance. A little bit settlement of some type. An oasis?
I’m staring laborious. A skinny straight line seems from the huddling huts, cuts by way of the sand and into the space, vanishing into the static waves of extra sand. A magician is at work right here.
I cool down to look at extra of the unfolding still-life drama. Seconds flip to minutes, and the image stays the identical – an ideal portray etched in an ideal day.
All of a sudden, the set modifications! We’re transferring over a darker terrain. The sandy mounds develop lengthy shadows. Some mild travels by way of the skinny clouds, revealing the views under them of slow-waltzing shadows on the desert flooring.
Larger sand dunes emerge winding by way of the brown scorched earth just like the snakes on the pinnacle of Medusa the Gorgon.
A big rocky mountain vary comes into view slowly swallowing the sandy setting. Oh, the magician is at work once more, altering the set.
We’re flying by way of thicker white clouds now that mark their presence with larger shadows forged upon the rugged mountain.
That is the assembly level between the sand, the ocean within the distance and the rocky mountain with grooves lower into it just like the dry beds of a river, hundreds of them meandering and cascading down the slope of the mountain to the underside of cliffs, gorges and valleys, their story buried in unknown and untold historical past. Can these be the Atlas Mountains?
The magician is operating out of time. He’s now in a rush and modifications his set as soon as once more.
The plane conspires and dips decrease to disclose lacerations on the perimeters of the jagged mountain, with a easy and featureless plateau of sand on the high. This view lasts just for a short time, as little pyramids of sand seem all of the sudden from nowhere to take over on this show of nature’s masterpiece.
I stare in utter reverence and surprise. At this second, there may be not a extra magnificent view on this planet. 1000’s of little cones of earth and sand adorn the panorama in all instructions. The nice builders of historical Egyptian civilisation should have derived their inspiration for the pyramids from this pure setting.
Night is approaching, the shadows are rising longer, and on the high finish and sides of every pyramid is a shadow forming, of an arch within the sand scooped out as if with a large spoon by a grasp craftsman. The arches quickly flip to craters, good hollows lower out from the highest of every pyramid. Solely nature might have created this good piece of a singular structure. The craters remind me of images of the floor of the moon, or another planets displaying the scars of earlier cataclysmic upheavals.
Nothing stirs as I stare at this limitless stretch of desolation with my senses dulled by the monotony of the silent drone of the plane effortlessly gliding by way of the clear afternoon skies. If some alien had been to land on this a part of the earth, as we now do on Mars, the moon and another planetary our bodies, what would they consider it?
The voice of an air hostess interrupts my reverie.
I’m trying on the display in entrance of me with its altering maps of our location en route. The knowledge on it tells me we’re nonetheless some 2000 kilometers from our ultimate vacation spot – Lagos.
I make a tough calculation. For the previous two hours we now have been flying over the Sahara Desert.
The steward leans over me and pulls down the shutter of the window beside me. It’s time to both bunker down, or watch a film.