Dominicans Are So Laidback, Banks Close By 2 p.m. – Abroad Life

November 13, 2020

The subject of today’s Abroad Life is a 25-year-old woman who lives and studies medicine in Dominica. She talks about how she got the admission, the fact that there are a lot of Nigerians there, and why she wants to leave once she’s done with her programme. 

First things first, where are you right now?

I’m in Dominica.

Dominican Republic?

Haha I knew you would say that.  No, they’re different. Dominican Republic is the more popular one. You know when people say they’re going to the Carribean, Dominica is one of the countries there. 

Cool. What’s happening in Dominica?

I’m a student. I’m studying medicine.

Why all the way in Dominica?

First of all, it’s cheaper to study medicine here than in the US. Secondly, I don’t get to spend six years like I would somewhere else. It’s four years here. 

Cool. So when did you get there?

May 2019. It’s been more than a year.

How did you choose to study at Dominica?

Pop-up ads. Obviously I did some investigation, but I saw that it was cheaper and I was like, “Let me just try this.” I also saw that there were some scholarships for international students. It was a long shot but I tried it anyways. I got admission into the school, but we still didn’t have the money so I was already forgetting about it. But at some point, the money suddenly came in and I just left. 

Did it take long to process your visa?

I didn’t get a visa until I got here. It was super easy. 

Awesome. Are there many Nigerians there? 

A lot. Dominica is smaller than Ibadan and its total population is 70,000 people but Nigerians are everywhere. After actual Dominicans, the most popular people here are Nigerians. 

Do you know why?

It’s because of the schools. I can’t see why Nigerians would be here if not for the schools. 

Did seeing so many Nigerians make you forget that you were abroad?

I have missed home, but it’s not bad. I always have someone to talk to. There’s a strong sense of community here among Nigerians. 

What’s the typical Dominican lifestyle like?

First of all, there’s light every time. Their major language is Creole but everyone speaks English so that’s great. About ninety percent of the people here are Christian as well so that’s nice for me. I attend RCCG here. Oh and my house is by the water! 

Cool! Food?

I don’t think I can ever understand their food combinations. In Nigeria, we eat rice, stew with plantain and chicken. But here you can see rice, mac and cheese, yam, boiled plantain and bananas with gravy all in the same plate and you wonder why they don’t separate it. 

Or why don’t they use it as a sacrifice to the gods.

Exactly, it just needs palm oil.

Are they nice people? 

They are obviously not as friendly as Nigerians, but they are okay. It’s not like they’re welcoming you with open arms, but they’re not pushing you away. 

Do you still want to stay there when you’re done?

No, Japa!!

Why? What do you not like about Dominica?

It’s a small island and there’s just one major hospital here so there aren’t that many opportunities. They’re too relaxed over here and I fear that if I stay for too long, I might catch that complacency fever. 

So they’re not hustlers?

They close their banks by 2pm everyday of the week except Fridays when they close earlier. 

Interesting. Coming from a hustling environment into a complacent one, how was fitting in for you?

On my first day here, I didn’t eat. It was a public holiday and they don’t open stores during holidays. I just came in and there was no food anywhere so that was a major shock for me. My housemate that came before me had garri so we had to drink garri before we could get someone to bring food for us the next day. But I adjusted.

Do a lot of tourists come around?

They do. Cruise ships come around. There are some nice tourist attractions here. But I think I’ve only been to one or two. I’m too busy doing doctor stuff. It’s a different mindset when you come here specifically for a vacation. There wasn’t a lot of movement for a while because of COVID though

How did the entire COVID-19 time play out?

Everyone was super scared, but I loved how they tackled it. Once they heard about the first case, they closed the airport and seaport. The country didn’t have up to 50 cases because they acted fast. 

What’s social life like in Dominica?

They like partying on Fridays but I’m always indoors Netflix and chilling. 

What’s one story you always like to tell people about your experience in Dominica?

I felt the Earth shake.


Last year. It wasn’t an earthquake, it was a tremor. I could feel the Earth shaking violently. It lasted for an entire day. It would just come and go. I was super scared. People were just going about their business like nothing was happening. They said “Oh it happens”.

What do you miss the most about Nigeria?

Food. Pounded yam. 

Have you heard about the EndSars protests?

Yes,  but haven’t they scrapped the unit now?

They do that every year. Is there a buzz about it there

Yes. A lot of Nigerians here are putting it on their WhatsApp statuses. But there are no marches. The Nigerian embassy is in Barbados. 

Nice. How easy is it for you to go to other countries in the Caribbean?

You’d have to take a plane. You need a visa.


One thing about living here that scares me is the roads. They are so tiny and slopey. And some drivers here are crazy.

Apart from being a medicine student, what else do you do?

I make cakes. I have a really nice customer base and I’m selling really well. I bake at home, so it’s easy for me. 

Do you live alone?

Yes, I’m supposed to have a roommate but she ran away. 

What do you mean “ran away”?

When COVID came, she Japa’d back to Canada. She’s Canadian. I wish I could easily do the same. I miss home. But the journey here cost about one million naira. And it took four days.  

Join The Conversation

Bring a friend.

You'll like this

November 28, 2019

Nigerians can make anything popular; if we all get behind a brand, that brand is made for life. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that some brands are used as a generic term for certain products or services because of how popular they’ve become. Here’s a list of some of them: 1) NEPA: Long before […]

December 24, 2021

Abroad Life tells the stories of Nigerians who japa’d, but many times, the stories have a shocking twist.

From jaw-dropping stories of grand-scale internet fraud to heartbreaking stories of family betrayal, these are the top 10 most-read Abroad Life stories of 2021.


Now on Zikoko

Recommended Quizzes

how much of an ajebutter
February 12, 2020

Are you an ajebutter or not? Well, if you’ve gone through life blissfully unaware of its harshness, then you probably are. Now, we want to know just how high you rank on that ajebutter scale, using your food preferences as a (very accurate) measure. Take to find out:

November 25, 2019

We already guessed how many people you’ve slept with, and y’all were out here denying the truth. Anyway, we won’t hold that against you. This time, however, we’ve created a quiz that predicts who you’ll sleep with next — so you can either prepare or try (unsuccessfully) to prevent it. So, take and see:

how tall are you
March 11, 2020

Did your parents give you enough beans when you were growing up? If they did, then you’re probably around 6’0″ and above. Either way, we created a quiz that can guess your current height (pretty accurately, if we do say so ourselves). Take to see if we nailed it:

More from General

March 10, 2022

Offers opportunity for young changemakers from Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa to join the Global Citizen Fellowship Program for a year-long, full-Time, paid placement International advocacy organisation Global Citizen has today announced that application for the 2022/23 Global Citizen Fellowship Program powered by BeyGOOD is now open until 29th April 2022. Fifteen young African changemakers: […]

March 8, 2022

Triller, the AI-powered, open garden technology platform for creators, has joined #BreakTheBias, the global campaign in honor of  International Women’s Day (#IWD2022) on Tuesday, 8th March.  All Triller platforms will feature stories from 30 incredible women in the music and entertainment industry who are working to end gender bias, along with a specially curated #BreakTheBias […]

March 4, 2022

In view of the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, MTN has announced it will be offering free international calls and SMS to all existing prepaid and postpaid customers, effective immediately. This offer is aimed at supporting customers to stay in touch with their loved ones while eliminating associated International Direct Dialing (IDD) costs due to high […]

March 3, 2022

ASUS has released its new Zenbook 14 Flip OLED (UP5401EA) and Vivobook Pro series (N7600/N7400). Pre-orders are available now. The Zenbook 14 Flip OLED (UP5401EA) is a slim, light and ultra-versatile convertible design equipped with a 4K OLED HDR NanoEdge touchscreen, having a 16:10 aspect ratio to give you a bigger visual workspace. The Asus […]

February 26, 2022

FairMoney Microfinance Bank, a leading fintech firm is currently revotionalizing  the digital banking space in Africa. The firm known for its dominance of micro lending in Nigeria has  transitioned into  a full fledged credit led digital bank. With this new height reached, comes a promise to provide Fair banking for all. FairMoney prides itself as […]

Feature image
February 26, 2022

Ensuring that Valentine’s Day fell within ten-day chocolate marketing period may have been a masterstroke for Ghana’s chocolate marketers. But they were also helped because a campaign launched 15 years ago to encourage local consumption of chocolate is beginning to bear fruit. By Zubaida Mabuno Ismail, bird story agency. “I have run out stock of […]


Trending Videos

Zikoko Originals

December 14, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
November 2, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
October 26, 2020
A collection of videos documenting some of the events of the EndSARS protests.
June 22, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
June 22, 2020
Hacked is an interesting new series by Zikoko made up of fictional but hilarious chat conversations.
June 4, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
June 2, 2020
Quickie is a video series where everyone featured gets only one minute to rant, review or do absolutely anything.
May 14, 2020
Isolation Diary is a Zikoko series that showcases what isolation is like for one young Nigerian working from home due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
March 12, 2020
Life is already hard. Deciding where to eat and get the best lifestyle experiences, isn't something you should stress about. Let VRSUS do that for you.

Z! Stacks

Here's a rabbit hole of stories to lose yourself in:

Zikoko amplifies African youth culture by curating and creating smart and joyful content for young Africans and the world.