I write this with a heavy heart. I will be leaving Lagos. This city of blinding lights, and relentless hustle, that have become my home. Cities that I have learned to love, hate, tolerate, survive and thrive.

The Christmas is upon us all, and since I’m a big fan of family and brotherly hugs, I’ll be rushing home the first chance I get, and somehow, no matter how much I’ve cried and yelled at Lagos, raved and ranted at the injustice and discourteous attitude of the streets, some things still remain special.

I will miss the early morning rush and scramble for commuter buses, the traffic jam, the endless BRT queues, and the dried expectant eyes of intending passengers. I will miss the street spectacles. The fights, the drama, women grudgingly clinging onto the garments of drunk men, and the curses in Yoruba.

I will miss the crude lack of grace from the Agberos, their menacing stares had awaken my deep societal longing for massive change. I will also miss the omnipresent smell of Marijuana and Indian hemp. They’re bad scents to me, but reluctantly have I learned to accept them, and live with it.

I will miss the women. Those gentle species with a heart of glass, and sharp eyes for a good guy. They come in all shapes, sizes and dispositions, and Lagos has given me my fair share of woman drama. Surprisingly, I miss the whores, and sex workers, who never fail to offer me a chance to smash my genitals against theirs.

I always reject, but appreciate the gesture.

Above all, I will miss my job and my readers. You guys have been the best. Running around the state, chasing the ‘celebrities’, and being right at the thick of the news has made me a better person. I have seen Davido reach puberty, 2face become a proper man, Don Jazzy lose his  arrogant aura, and Tonto Dikeh deceiving the Nigerian public.

These few months were a splash of relative happiness sprinkled with a confetti of  achievements. I have not made a fortune of cash, or found a stash of gold. But I have found souvenirs. These memories of a lifetime, my mental pictures of everything. These are my souvenirs.

Here’s to Lagos. Here’s to the bright lights. Life is happening, and nothing lasts forever. I am Joey Akan, an Ajebutter stuck in the winds of Lagos. You have followed my story, and thankful I am.

Have an amazing festive season! I will miss you all!