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Cabo Verde: My Island Way

Cabo Verde: My Island Way

Cabo Verde

A wild card decision and the quest for adventure sends Wuraola Fagbamiye to beautiful Cabo Verde and opens the doors to experiencing life the Island way. An experience that begins with unlearning some things learned and she introduces this Portuguese colony to us…But first, her journey there.

I was sitting down in the general waiting area at an airport in Casablanca, Morocco. Not one word of English was being spoken. Only Arabic, French, Portuguese and I don’t even know what else. What on earth was I doing here? I asked myself. I was supposed to take a flight in the next nine hours to Cabo Verde. How did I get here on my way to the country famous for its numerous islands, off the coast of Senegal?

Let’s backtrack a little…

It all began when I applied for an unpaid Marketing position in Cabo Verde, through AISEC an NGO I am part of. Once accepted I began to learn Portuguese and started speaking to some people who lived in Cabo Verde, trying to figure out how I was going to survive.

Cabo Verde is a country just off the coast of Senegal. It is comprised of 100 islands and is referred to as an Archipelago. The main Language is Kriolu, which is the pidgin of Portuguese. So once you learn Portuguese you should be able to communicate.

The Country is one of the few colonized by the Portuguese, this is why English or French isn’t the dominant language. It is actually part of ECOWAS and as such one of the Countries, which a Nigerian does not need a Visa to visit and stay for at least three months.

It is a very small country with a population of just over 500 thousand people and the majority live on the island of Santiago. Praia the capital is also located in Santiago.

It is called Cabo Verde and not Cape Verde because they have chosen not to translate the name to English for all their official purposes.

I chose to fly Royal Air Maroc which turned out to be quite a circuitous trip, but it was the best option, remember I wasn’t being paid… All the other airlines were way too expensive. Why on earth would a ticket to somewhere in West Africa cost almost $2000? I paid $700 instead.

The only downside though was that the departure time for the flight was 5.30 am. I was definitely not going to move around Lagos by 3.00 am, so I opted to go spend the night at the airport. I couldn’t sleep though. Apparently people steal luggage in the airport as someone tried to steal mine. So I ended up pulling an all-nighter.

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It was a long, tiring and boring night and by the time we boarded I was already regretting my decision to leave Nigeria for such an unknown.


Continue reading all about Waraola’s adventure when you purchase the January 2019 edition of the TW magazine, here.

Cabo Verde


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