Often when you travel to countries or continents that are different from your own things that shock or surprise you at first soon (usually within a week) become the norm.
Here in Uganda – as in other countries in Africa many people wear sandals which are made from old car tires (not the norm in Canada or the US).
Here it the sandal ‘factory’ in Lira.
Other things which have become the norm in a short time are the following (although I’m certain the list is longer)!!
Eggs and (cold) toast for breakfast, cold showers (not by choice), uncomfortable pillows, mosquito nets, no street lights, random power outages, lack of wifi, everyone has a mobile phone, smiling faces, bumpy roads, red dirt, bicycles, motorcycles, nobody wearing helmets, people wanting to touch you, being followed by children as you walk the street, 4 people on a motorcycle, 4 people on a bicycle, bicycles and motorcycles being used to transport almost anything (goats, chickens, crates of tomato’s, chairs, bed frames, rebar, wood ….), incredibly helpful people, rice, potatoes, tea, ‘thank you’, ‘you’re most welcome’, a hundred (ok maybe not that many) people in the back of a truck, feeling safe, crazy traffic, shaking hands, touching people when you talk, laughter and MORE laughter —— but, most of all KINDNESS.
I landed in Uganda on July 13th – I felt instantly at home.
I now feel like I have a family here.
I will be leaving Lira on Monday, knowing that I will be back next year to continue to get to know the country and the people even more.
On the 5th of August I will venture to Kenya – a country where I have visited twice already.
This time I will stay with my ‘sister’ Margaret – many of you have had the opportunity to meet her. I am very much looking forward to spending a week with Margaret and her family and the staff of her school. This will be a reunion of sorts for me – as I spent a week at Limuru Girls School (where Margaret is the Principal) almost 2 years ago.
Wishing you an incredible Tuesday afternoon – for me the day is almost over and as I look outside the sky is full of stars – for this I am grateful, as I just finished a tub of hand washing which is currently drying on my balcony!!!
My BFF (Charles – my driver) and I are sharing tea while using the wifi at the ‘fancy’ hotel (where they serve cereal for breakfast)!!!
(the picture:Yesterday we went to town for an adventure throughout the streets of Lira Bruno and Sarah volunteered to take us around town. Bruno is one of the students who is sponsored by Kirabo and Sarah has become my personal photographer!! Bruno decided that he would be my ‘sherpa’ and took it upon himself to lug my (700 pound) backpack throughout the journey!!)