Thursday, September 27, 2012

The light at the end of the tunnel...


So, as at this moment, my service year will be over in approximately 3 weeks! THREEEEE WEEKS! NYSC Lagos Secretariat sent out a letter to corps members - well, it's not like they mailed it to us, but I saw a status message on someone's BBM and got it sent to me. October 18th, 2012 is the day it'll all be over for me and I CANNOT WAIT!

I'll post the letter here, so you have an idea what the last couple of weeks are like for corps members. We're supposed to get our last 2-3 weeks off from our primary assignment (employers), so that we can take part in the various activities lined up for the end of our service year.

  • Final clearance - This is supposed to be a VERY tedious process. Some 2011 Batch B corpers had to report to their LGs on a Saturday and Sunday because their LGIs didn't complete the final clearance in the time allotted. Meanwhile, I have to ask - how does it make any sense to appoint 1-3 officials to cover 600+ corpers in 2 days? Especially when more than half of those officials are lazy and refuse to work for more than 3 hours per day! NYSC, you need a complete overhaul - I'm still saying it.

    Anyways, in this process, we're supposed to collect our final clearance letters from our employers stating that we completed our duties satisfactorily. In addition, we have to present our CD cards showing that we attended all our CDs (I think we're allowed 1 to 3 absences).

    And finally, they check to see that all our monthly clearance letters are complete and stashed in our folders.
  • Job Creation and Awareness seminars - Erm, are they joking?
  • Passing Out Parade rehearsals - Yeah, they're most definitely joking!
  • Passing Out and collection of NYSC certificates - I imagine there's a parade, with marching, and a whole bunch of corpers milling around anxiously, waiting to pick up their certificates and saying GOODBYE FOREVER!

As far as the 2-3 weeks off from our employers, at my office some supervisors generously gave breaks to their corpers throughout the year, so those corps members will have to finish out the month. I'm taking that option cos I can't sit at my uncle/aunt's house doing nothing, especially if there's no electricity. And I guess at the end of October, it'll be time to pack my bags and move them back to PH while I plot my next move.

Actually, I'm leaning more towards going back to Atlanta at this point, but we'll see.

Gotta run!
Have a pretty day with lots of berry thoughts.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Ta-na-na-na-na! Inspector NYSC, not Gadget

Yo yo!

Soooooooooo, guess what?!?!? My local government inspector's office staff came by where I'm doing my primary assignment for INSPECTION! Since I started serving, the LGI (Local Government Inspector) has stated that there would be routine/unexpected visits to our offices, to ensure that each corper was actively serving. Now, I'm passing out in a few weeks and nobody ever showed up, so these "threats" have generally been construed as idle...

Imagine my shock when the corper in our HR department sent a BBM letting me know that the NYSC officials were in the office and we all had to come and sign that we were present :-O. Like, FOR REALLY REAL? I don't think they did this for earlier batches at work, so it's seeming like NYSC's beginning to take things more seriously. Seriously enough that my LGI called my dad's phone, because I missed an activity, and my dad's noted as my emergency contact person (as for what I missed and why, it's a loooooooooooooong story that I can't get into on this blog - sawry).

Hmm! I just need the next 3 weeks to go by quietly and quickly, so I can get my certificate and be outta this mug.

*cough* On a non-NYSC note, I have a terrible sore throat and cold - IT SUCKS!!! But I had some chicken pepper soup this evening to help with it, so YAY me!

Kisses from Berry!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Almost there!!!!!!!!!!! What next for Berry?

Hey berryful ladies and gentlemen,

OMG!!! I am almost at the end of my NYSC journey! Gawsh, I'm MUCHO excited, and passing out day can't come quickly enough. Now, the question follows: What will you be doing after NYSC Ms. Berry?

Erm, at this exact point in time, the honest answer is I HAVE ABSOTIVELY NO IDEA! *insert BB straight face*

While a few months ago, I was 100% sure I'd leave Nigeria (see post here: The reason why I'm leaving Nigeria after serving) now I'm not so sure. Truthfully, I still balk at the idea of forever and ever in this country, but it's not the worst place in the world. I think for most aje-butters, a comfortable position is a healthy balance between living in Nigeria and outside. This is my humble opinion - feel free to disagree.

So here are my options...

  1. Get a GREAT job and stay in Nigeria

    The fact of the matter is that I will not be comfortable living in Nigeria with a mediocre job or mediocre pay. My standard of living is not outrageous or anything, but I need a lovely and pretty serviced apartment (constant electricity with clean water and maintenance service in case somn happens), with a nice car and driver (YES I want a driver), and the ability to travel every couple of months, maybe. Fine, maybe my head's in the clouds, but a girl wants what a girl wants. And to get what I want, mediocre pay will not cut it! At the same time, I wouldn't want to get all this money in a job I hate. I already told you how frustrated I've been during service (The life of a corper at work) and this is not something I wish to continue in my life.

    Now if I decide to stay in Nigeria, do I stay in Lagos or go back to Port Harcourt? If I stay in Lagos, I can FINALLY live ALL BY MYSELF!!! If I go back to Port Harcourt, I have to move in with the 'rents and that is nowhere near desirable - someone's mother believes you can't live separately from your parents if you live in the same city *insert BB straight face*
  2. Go back to the States and continue with my old job

    Going back to Atlanta means going back to my old job, as my employer has generously agreed to give me my job back. In addition, the company has an office in Abuja, so this would give me the opportunity to go back and forth anyways. My only issue here is there isn't much room for growth at the company, or career-wise. And I know within a year or two, I'd be complaining and wanting to do something else again. I feel like I need stability at this point in my life, so whatever decision I make should make sense and keep me content for the next 3-5 years. I'm not getting any younger, even though I look younger everyday.
  3. Go back to school - another master's degree or Phd?

    Well, I've flirted with this idea on and off for a while. BUT what do I go back to school for? My first degree was scientifically-inclined, and I got an MBA a few years later. I worked in a marketing function for almost 4 years - I'm actually doing that part-time right now (in addition to serving - shhhh, yet another secret to keep from NYSC). Because my MBA was not focused on anything in particular, and my first degree was completely different, I think I might want to study Marketing. On the plus side, there are scholarship opportunities from my state, but would going back to school hold me back? And is it really necessary? 
What option has more promise? What do you think? Gawsh, making life decisions is sooooo frustrating. I wish I had God's "The Life of Berry" handbook so I can cheat and make all the right decisions. 

K, going to think now. At least my resume's been polished off :)

Love ya,

Friday, September 14, 2012

NYSC 2012 Batch C Timetable

Hi guys,

Seems like people are going to my post on Batch B 2012 timetable, so let me make life easier so nobody gets confused. The link to the schedule is at NYSC 2012 Batch C Mobilization Timetable.

Pre-mobilization Workshop Meeting 4th- 6th September, 2012
Registration of Foreign-trained Nigerian Graduates 1st August- 5th October, 2012
Submission of Masterlist. Screening/Vetting by Mobilization Officers 12th - 21st September, 2012
Action by the Computer Centre 12th - 21st September, 2012
Delivery of Preliminary Printouts 25th - 27th September, 2012
Return of Corrected Printouts by Institutions to NYSC NDHQ 3rd - 5th October , 2012
Action by Computer (Coding, Corrections etc) 3rd - 23rd October, 2012
Sorting and Packaging of Call-up letters 24th - 28th October, 2012
Delivery of Call-up letters to Institutions / NYSC Secretariats 29th - 31st October, 2012
Briefing of Prospective Corps Members 29th - 31st October, 2012
2012 Batch ‘C’ Orientation Course aka CAMP 6th - 27th November, 2012

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Nigerian Blog Awards - Nominations/Votes Needed


I seem overly excited, don't I? Well, yes I am. And why is that, you ask? Well, I shall tell you right now. Someone who commented on one of my posts, and my "cousin" separately said they'd nominate me for a NIGERIAN BLOG AWARD!!!!!!!!!!!! Woooooooooooooo hoooooooooooo! *does victory dance*

So, now I gotta publicize it and ask y'all to join in please! It'd be so awesome to win somn for this blog. OMG, I'm going to write a speech just in case! And I wonder if there's an actual award ceremony. There's this dress I got made for my sister's wedding last year that I never wore and... Ok, Berry calm down! *whew, I kinda started getting carried away there* Sawry :)

Okay, so how do we get this thing done? Please note the deadline is September 23rd!!!
  1. Click on the following link: Nigerian Blog Awards Nominations
  2. Fill out the form - name/email
  3. Nominate me for the categories you think I fall under, by pasting "" in the appropriate boxes.
  4. Click the Submit button at the bottom of the page
  5. Go to your email inbox (or spam/junk folder) and click on the link sent by Nigerian Blog Awards, so that your nomination counts
  6. Voila! You have done a BERRY good thing and will be infused with BERRY love forever, whatever that means.
I went through the list, and the ones I think pertain to this blog are:
  • Best Humour Blog -  Blog that is amusing or lighthearted in nature.
  • Best New Blog - not NEWS Blog o -  Blog established in August 2011 or more recently.
  • Best Topical Blog -  Blog with a clear niche that is not represented in any of the other categories. 
  • Best Tutorial Blog -  Blog that focuses on teaching its readers through the use of step-by-step instructions.
  • Nigerian Blog of the Year -  Best overall blog by a Nigerian or best blog with a strong focus on any aspect of Nigeria.

Truth is I'm not 100% sure which of the categories are appropriate. But the Nigerian Blog Awards staff will remove the nomination from the incorrect categories, so hey.

Preeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeetty please nominate me!!! I'll make berry smoothies for you and send authentic berry kisses to you if you do :)

Berry Latte

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Word on the street is... Batch C 2012 registration has started

Hey y'all,

Soooooooo, I've been stalking and re-stalking the NYSC official website for the Batch C 2012 timetable. All to no avail! BUT someone who frequents THIS site said she heard they already started registration!!! Although she went to the Lagos Secretariat and was turned back, she knows someone who completed registration. If this is the case, and going by last year's schedule, foreign grads registration will be over mid-October.

For registration tips, go to my post on Registration for Aje-butters.

PLEASE if anyone has indeed registered, and can get the timetable directly from NYSC HQ, send the info to me! It is URGENTLY NEEDED!


It's out now! Click here for the link to NYSC 2012 Batch C Mobilization Table. Can I just say that it's kinda *rhymes with BILLY* to post the timetable over a month AFTER registration has started! Can someone please show my Letter to NYSC post to a bigwig at NYSC?

Thanks to my lovely reader who gave me the info in the first place - you totally RAWK!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I know you're gonna kick butt for Batch C!

Tenks a bunsh - Oh lawd, I'm losing my Aje-butter cred!