After many stories , tales and experiences shared by those who had been to this open but respected and most sought-after shrine, I finally found myself at the much talked about New Afrika Shrine also known as KALAKUTA SHRINE, located in Ikeja, Lagos .
On 1st October, as part of the independence celebration, an event powered by Jameson Irish Whiskey was organised to bring together the people to celebrate and carouse.
Two days before the day, I won a ticket online by answering a puzzle. I wasn’t expecting it because I don’t believe in all those social media pop questions with the offer of rewards. I only answered because I knew the question. I picked up the ticket same day.
I actually put up the ticket for offer on my Whatsapp status, trying to give it to any lucky friend but those who were willing couldn’t meet up. so….
Looking at the event, I knew this is WHISKEY night and I’m a “PARTIAL TEETOTAL” lol but something came to my mind that this is the time for me to visit the shrine and tell my story.
Yes, I set up to visit the shrine and truly I had a Shrine-Like Experience.
As I was stepping on the street, I was greeted with the cloud of smoke oozing out from different angles coupled with offensive odor of snuffs.
For my mind, I said ” Lekan are you sure you can stay here? Well, I asked for this and there is no going back”
Gradually, I was moving closer to the entrance with large numbers of people hanging around the venue. Maybe some of them couldn’t get the gate pass.
As I was going I could see many of them whisking to me if I’m interested in buying Cigarette, Marijuana or other hard substance.
I frown my face just like a guy already high on gum, I gave them a death stare. This paved way for me because I used the LAW 21 given by Robert Greene in his book, 48 Laws of Power: You Need To Play A Sucker To Catch A Sucker.
At last, I came in and I was welcome with an empty cup which I would use to collect drinks inside. I collected it and went inside.
I looked around searching for Coca-Cola, Malt or water but I couldn’t. So what do I do? I’ve never tasted this whiskey before so I shouldn’t try what I won’t finish.
I held my cup for like four hours, sipping what was not.
As I was sipping the empty cup, my mind told me if I saw my choir master here, what would I say. Actually what would my choir master be doing in this decorated but idolized shrine? I also felt like we should even meet so we can shake hands and drink WHISKEY together. Lol.
As I entered the hall, I couldn’t see anything because of the smoke until few minutes. It was a real smokers’ shrine and a disco podium.
When I saw people smoking heavily without caution, my eye gazed at the wall where I noticed inscriptions on the wall like: Beware Aids Is Real. United We Stand Divided We Fall Africa Must Rise. No Smoking. Please No Recording Order By Management. Etc
The rules were broken as I could vividly see under 18 smoking ORIGINAL WEED with erotic dance in some corners. Note, if you are asthmatic, the Marijuana licensed Hub is not for you because the smoke may even affect your unborn children.
Weed smoking is against the law in Nigeria but I can assure you that the only place where people smoke WEED without fear or harassment is the SHRINE. In short, you are above the law when you find yourself in the shrine.
This is a place where the poorest and the richest can share lighters for smoke as MARIJUANA becomes their uniting factor.
I kept changing my location within the arena to avoid notice that I wasn’t drinking anything from the cup while peeping through the walls and corners.
After 4 hours and the party wasn’t going to end, I took my leave, this time, it was dark outside as the people outside were still in serious and dedicated SMOKING SECTION.
The shrine is a good place to relax with sound of beautiful music and live performances. However, you can get yourself addicted to life there if you are not careful. It is a new world entirely.
Someone asked if I can still visit the place. Sure, I have to answer the call of duty as my job is tied to moving around. Lol .