Today we visited our local beach (Bar Beach) with buckets in tow to collect some sand for our sand table. Bar Beach was recently cleared off squatters in preparation for a huge construction project (Eko Atlantic) and it all looks quite inviting. Acres of golden sand leading out to the sea.
Anyway we ran into a group of area boys who are territorial young men you generally have to ‘dash’ a few hundred naira (a few dollars) to get safe passage. So I brought my Naira but honestly when we rolled up at the beach, I didn’t feel comfortable even with our driver present. Oh and they wanted a few thousand naira for access. And I had a feeling by the time we’d collected some sand they’d want a bit more naira on top. Anyway we turned around and scuttled off home.
These guys used to ‘manage’ the beach back when there were squatters so you can see their disgruntlement at having the rug rudely pulled from beneath their feet by politicians. It’s not like any provision was made for them. Also it’s pretty much what happens with more children out of school than any other country.
Ru-bear cried his eyes out. Pampered child of the West that he is, he thought area boys were a cuddly cartoon gang like the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and didn’t understand why they wouldn’t let us access the beach. Time to wake up and smell the slave-labour produced coffee, Son.
Looks like we’ll have to find another beach.