The driver, a wiry balding middle-aged man, whistled to a tune from “sweet mother”, a popular high life music playing on the stereo of the Toyota Sienna mini-van. He seemed unperturbed by the screams and rants of the passengers, most of whom like me were making their first-ever visit to the hilltop, as the car sped along the torturous road with its sharp bends.
A wave of nausea hit me, making me clutch the head rest like it was a life line. I closed my eyes and moved my lips in a silent entreaty to God, asking Him to see me safely to my destination. “We have just passed the devil’s elbow. The mother of all bends”, announced an excited old timer in a deep baritone voice that would have made any choir proud.
A few minutes later, with my eyes still closed, I felt the car jerk to a halt. Not sure whether to open my eyes or not, I held tight to the headrest, fighting the nauseous feeling that was threatening to overwhelm me. Someone tapped me on the shoulder and my eyes opened to behold a pretty faced lady, dressed in an olive green turtle neck sweater and a pair of printed pants, smiling at me. I managed a weak smile back at her, embarrassed she had seen me in my not so good moments. “You may want to come down now, sir”, said the lady, seeming not to notice my embarrassment. I mumbled a thank you and alighted from the mini-van.
Taking in deep breaths of the clean and fresh mountain air, helped to quell the nauseous storm that was brewing inside of me. After checking in, I changed into a pair of shorts and boots. Armed with a pair of binoculars, a camera and a back pack, I set out to explore the resort. The journey to the Obudu Mountain Resorts had first begun the day I watched a documentary on the resort and all its beautiful features. Now standing here looking at the idyllic scenery of one of the most the most magnificent tourist destinations in the world today, situated deep in the tropical rain forest of the Cross River State of Nigeria, I knew that the media had been right when it dubbed the resort: “an abode of the gods”.
The air was filled with the sweet scent of flowers in bloom. There was this peace and serenity about the place that made you feel like you were one with space. Time simply did not exist at that moment. From the canopy walkway, situated in the trees, that allowed visitors to have a thrilling close up of birds in their natural habitats high above the ground. To the breathtaking waterfall with it beautiful streams, to the arc of rainbow (this I learned from the locals was a frequently occurring phenomena) that made the forest burst into a myriad of colors. Everything seemed like a plot from an enchanted story. The thrill did not stop there. I rode the 4 km long cable car and visited the bee farm, where pure honey was produced on the resort and exported to other countries.
My visit to the mountain resort was an exhilarating experience that taught me so many amazing things about nature and I also learned to respect and appreciate it. Like everything that has a beginning, my stay at wonderland had come to an end and I was ready to embark on my journey back home but not without the beautiful memories of a time well spent.
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